Following their 44-3 drubbing of Chattanooga in the quarterfinals, Iowa followed up that performance with 24-8 beat down of Cornell. Iowa Thomas Gilman responded in a big way after his loss to #10 Boyle in the quarterfinals, and Mike Evans hit the 100 career victory milestone adding to the fact that Iowa would be wrestling for the National dual title tomorrow.
Thomas Gilman opened things up at 125 against #3 Nahshon Garrett with a 3-1 victory. With the match tied 1-1 in the final period Gilman hit the match winning takedown, and followed that with a big mat return to finish the rideout to get the win for the Hawkeyes. Cornell coach Rob Koll spoke after the match that Gilman was able to shut Garrett down, which was something his wrestler needed to see before nationals.
Cory Clark came out at 133 in what was expected to be a tight match between him and #16 Mark Grey. Clark and Grey each traded takedowns, but Clark’s high pace forced a stall point, and was also able to get out from bottom which what was the deciding factor separating the two wrestlers.
Josh Dziewa added a close 5-3 win at 141 which led to the second top five match in the dual between Brandon Sorensen and Christopher Villalonga at 149. Sorensen was relentless in pushing the pace as he had five pushouts before he finally was able to secure his first takedown in the second. Sorensen picked up additional points from an escape, stalling, and riding time to have the decisive 5-3 final giving Iowa the second potential swing match.
Brian Realbuto and Dylan Palacio each picked up wins at 157 and 165 for Cornell to make the score 12-6 after six weights. Kelly was able to stay with the top ten ranked Reallbuto through the first period trailing only 4-3, but after surrendering a pair of takedowns in the second he was never able to get back in it and lost 10-7. Moore was forcing all the action in the third trailing 5-3, and was eventually awarded a stall point, but wasn’t able to get a takedown which would’ve won the match.
Mike Evans then won 3-0 over Duke Pickett, which was the 100th win in the Hawkeye’s career. Evan led 1-0 after the first, and Pickett opted to go neutral, which is when Evans hit the takedown which gave him his milestone win. At one point during the match Evans and Pickett got chippy on the edge, which sent both team benches into an uproar, including the coaches. Cornell was docked a team point, which to Cornell Koll’s understanding was because of a wrestler’s actions, not a coaches.
Gabe Dean then got the third Big Red win for Cornell when he beat Sammy Brooks 6-2 to cut the Iowa lead 15-8 at 184. Nathan Burak provided the dual clinching win over #9 Jace Bennett 3-2 making it 18-8 at 197.
With the dual out of reach, Cornell’s coach decided to forfeit heavyweight rather than risk the only heavyweight he has on the roster re-injuring himself. A move that did not satisfy Bobby Telford. “I’m surprised, it’s national duals you figure they would send someone out. It’s big boy wrestling.” When he was told that the Cornell heavyweight was held out to prevent injury he responded, “Good for them.”
Missouri comes in after securing two wins on the day. The Tigers are a very good team, coming in ranked number two in the country, only behind Iowa. They bring in eight ranked wrestlers, with five in the top five.
“[I’m] excited, the way my team has been consistant all season,” said Missouri Head Coach Brian Smith after the win over Lehigh. “Real please with how we competed today.”
Missouri picked up their second win on the day over Lehigh in the semifinals. Lehigh got there by upsetting #3 Ohio State 21-18 in a dual that was tied at 18 going to their heavyweights. Douglas Vollaro eventually got the takedown in the second sudden victory period to secure their dual win.
The Tigers really took it to the Mountain Hawks, winning all but three of the matches, including two by major decision. However they won’t have as easy a time with the Hawkeyes. The dual will feature eight matches between ranked competitors, including three top five matches and two with the sixth ranked wrestler.
But the Hawkeyes won’t roll through the Tigers either. Missouri is a solid squad and Coach Smith has been at Missouri for 17 years, and this is arguably his best squad yet. He credits his seniors for his teams consistency this year.
“I have five seniors in the lineup that have been through some battles and [are] a very mature group that have a lot of success and then when you add in some really good sophomores, they’ve grown really close.” Smith said of his squad. “I think that when you have great leadership on a team, I know I’m going to have a great team.”
You can check out the full projected lineups below, as well as Iowa and Missouri’s semifinal results. We have pictures from todays action (mostly from the Cornell/Iowa dual) up on our Flickr page, which you can find here. The dual tomorrow can be seen live on the Big Ten Network, it starts at 11:30 and we’ll have a live play by play thread going as well, so be sure to check back!
#1 IOWA 24, #5 Cornell 8
125 – Thomas Gilman (IA) dec. #3 Nahshon Garrett (C), 3-1; 3-0
133 – #6 Cory Clark (IA) dec. #16 Mark Grey (C), 6-2; 6-0
141 – #6 Josh Dziewa (IA) dec. Dylan Realbuto (C), 5-3; 9-0
149 – #2 Brandon Sorensen (IA) dec. #5 Christopher Villalonga (C), 4-1; 12-0
157 – #6 Brian Realbuto (C) dec. #16 Michael Kelly (IA), 10-7; 12-3
165 – #11 Dylan Palacio (C) dec. #9 Nick Moore (IA), 5-4; 12-6
174 – #3 Mike Evans (IA) dec. #18 Duke Pickett (C), 3-0; 15-5*
184 – #1 Gabriel Dean (C) dec. #8 Sammy Brooks (IA), 6-2; 15-8
197 – #6 Nathan Burak (IA) dec. #9 Jace Bennett (C), 3-2; 18-8
285 – #4 Bobby Telford (IA) won by forfeit; 24-8
*Cornell lost a team point following the 174-pound match
#2 Missouri 23, #11 Lehigh 9
125 – #2 Alan Waters (MU) won 6-3 over Scott Parker (Lehigh)
133 – #12 Mason Beckman (Lehigh) won 9-4 over Zach Synon
141 – #5 Lavion Mayes (MU) won by major decision, 11-3, over #20 Randy Cruz (Lehigh)
149 – #4 Drake Houdashelt (MU) won by major decision, 10-2, over Drew Longo (Lehigh
157 – #17 Mitch Minotti (Lehigh) won 2-0 over #12 Joseph Lavalle (MU)
165 – Mike England (MU) won 6-1 over Marshall Peppelman
174 – #5 Jon Eblen (MU) won 4-2 over Santiago Martinez (Lehigh)
184 – #3 Nathaniel Brown (Lehigh) won 7-3 over #14 Willie Miklus (MU)
197 – #1 J’den Cox (MU) won 4-0 over #10 Elliot Riddick (Lehigh)
285 – #16 Devin Mellon (MU) won 5-3 over Douglas Vollaro (Lehigh)
#1 Iowa vs #2 Missouri
125 – #5 Thomas Gilman vs. #2 Alan Waters
133 – #6 Cory Clark vs. Zach Synon
141 – #6 Josh Dziewa vs. #5 Lavion Mayes
149 – #2 Brandon Sorensen vs. #4 Drake Houdashelt
157 – #15 Mike Kelly vs. #12 Joey Lavaliee
165 – #9 Nick Moore vs. Mikey England
174 – #3 Mike Evans vs. #5 John Eblen
184 – #8 Sammy Brooks vs. #14 Willie Miklus
197 – #6 Nathan Burak vs. #1 J’den Cox
285 – #4 Bobby Telford vs. #16 Devin Mellon