The University of Iowa once again came out on top in their third straight top ten dual matchup against Illinois. Iowa won seven of ten matches, with two wins coming by bonus, but the message after the dual was clear, coach Tom Brands is still not satisfied. “We got the Arctic Plunge tomorrow night, and that’s going to be the only thing that cools me off.” Brands said in the after dual presser.
Thomas Gilman got things going for Iowa with his 18-6 major decision at 125, but even he was not satisfied with his end result, “We needed a tech fall, and I didn’t quite get a tech fall..I let the guy lay there a bit. I was working on top, but maybe not enough.” This was the beginning of the message that Iowa felt like they left points out on the mat.
Illinois then got on the board at 133 when Zane Richards won a rematch from the Midlands final against Cory Clark. Clark was pushing the pace in the third period and at one point had the match tied 5-5, but with a little over :30 seconds left Clark cut Richards to go for the win. Brands mentioned that Clark needs to get to his offense in the first period, and not put himself in a position where he needs to come back in the final period.
Iowa scored back-to-back decisions at 141 and 149 to put Iowa out front 10-3. Senior Josh Dziewa got vengeance over Steve Rogrigues after dropping his quarterfinals match at the Midlands to the Illinois wrestler. Big Ten wrestler of the week Brandon Sorensen added six points in the third period, but was unable to get bonus points for Iowa.
Illinois made their run at 157 and 165 as they scored back-to-back bonus wins to take the lead from Iowa for the first time of the night. Isaiah Martinez came out and hit several throws to Mike Kelly’s back at 157 to score a 21-6 technical fall.
At 165 8th rated Jackson Moore put a 12-1 major decision against backup Logan Thomsen and Illinois had the team lead 12-10.
Alex Meyer provided late match dramatics again (remember the Michigan State dual anyone?) this time at his natural weight of 174, where he got the fall against the #6 ranked wrestler in the nation, Zac Brunson. “Most people dream of about being up 10 or 12 points and then sticking him, but getting a fall is huge, and getting the crowd on their feet is awesome.” Meyer said.
Meyer trailed late into his match (5-3) and with very little time he had earned a stall warning on Brunson. With his relentless pressure and constant attacks he hit an ankle pick that would have tied the match, but Meyer caught Brunson on his back to earn the fall, one second before time expired.
The last three took care of business with Sammy Brooks (184) winning 7-1, Nathan Burak (197) winning 3-2, and Bobby Telford (285) 4-0, all winning decisions to bring the final tally to a 25-12 Iowa victory.
Tomorrow, the Hawkeye wrestling club will be doing their Arctic Plunge out at Brown Deer golf course, and the Hawkeyes will retake the mat next Friday against the Northwestern Wildcats, in Iowa City.
#2 IOWA 25, #9 Illinois 12
125 – #5 Thomas Gilman (IA) major dec. Dominic Olivieri (ILL), 18-6; 4-0
133 – #5 Zane Richards (ILL) dec. #4 Cory Clark (IA), 6-5; 4-3
141 – #8 Josh Dziewa (IA) dec. #13 Steven Rodriguez (ILL), 3-2; 7-3
149 – #3 Brandon Sorensen (IA) dec. Kyle Langenderfer (ILL), 11-5; 10-3
157 – #5 Isaiah Martinez (ILL) tech. fall #15 Michael Kelly (IA), 21-6; 10-8
165 – #8 Jackson Morse (ILL) major dec. Logan Thomsen (IA), 12-1; 10-12
174 – Alex Meyer (IA) pinned #6 Zac Brunson (ILL), 6:59; 16-12
184 – #8 Sammy Brooks (IA) dec. #20 Nikko Reyes (ILL), 7-1; 19-12
197 – #5 Nathan Burak (IA) dec. Jeff Koepke (ILL), 3-2; 22-12
285 – #1 Bobby Telford (IA) dec. Brooks Black (ILL), 4-0; 25-12