Wrestling returns at 6:30 God’s Time (7:30 Eastern) with twenty semifinal matches, live on the Big Ten Network. Consolation matches will also be going, likely up to the consolation semifinals, and those will be available on BTN+. We’ll get into those in a minute, but first, let’s recap the fireworks-filled first two rounds.
At 125 pounds, we kicked off with a massive upset, as 13-seeded Dylan Shawver of Rutgers knocked off Minnesota’s Pat McKee 6-5, holding off a late surge after going up 4-0. Shawver did fall to the 5-seed Rayvon Foley, who will wrestle Spencer Lee in the semifinals. Malik Heinselman, the 3-seed, will wrestle Devin Schroder, the 7-seed who used sudden victory to upset Nebraska’s Liam Cronin.
12-seed Kyle Luigs defeated Michigan’s Jack Medley at 133 pounds, but the most of the weight was mostly chalk as top-seeded Roman Bravo-Young will wrestle Chris Cannon, the 4 from Northwestern and the 2-seed Austin DeSanto will face the 3-seed Lucas Byrd. 141 was actually all chalk, as there were no seeding upsets on the championship side, and so we will get the Eierman-Red, Rivera-Lee semifinals we were promised.
149 was everything that 141 was not, as Ridge Lovett used an early throw to upset 2-seed Max Murin, Michael Blockhus beat 3-seed Griffin Parriott, and Kanen Storr won by three seconds of riding time after second tiebreaks to beat 4-seed Yahya Thomas. Top-seeded Sammy Sasso walked through Peyton Omania. So, semifinals will be Sasso-Storr, Lovett-Blockhus.
157 was fairly uneventful, with only 4-seed Kendall Coleman struggling against Brady Berge. He will face Deakin, while Kaleb Young and Brayton Lee will have their second battle of the year, with Young winning the first in sudden victory.
Peyton Robb shocked Danny Braunagel at 165 pounds to advance to the semifinals, reversing a 9-6 loss in their dual match a few weeks ago. He’ll face Ohio State’s Ethan Smith, the 2-seed, and top-seeded Alex Marinelli will face the fourth-seeded Cameron Amine.
Somehow 174 pounds will also have a 1-4, 2-3 semifinal, as Starocci was able to repeat his victory of Kaleb Romero, and Mikey Labriola outlasted Rutger’s Jackson Turley. Michael Kemerer will face Logan Massa, and the two aforementioned will wrestle to face the winner. Aaron Brooks overcame injury and Nelson Brands to advance to the semifinals at 184 pounds, where he will face John Poznanski, who pinned Owen Webster. Taylor Venz knocked off Layne Malczewski, dashing my hopes of a Malczewski-Poznanski (presumably all-Polish) final, and setting up a semifinal matchup with Chris Weiler.
197 pounds will also have a 1-4, 2-3 semifinals, as Schultz will face Cam Caffey, and Jacob Warner will face Myles Amine. Caffey and Amine both went to the wire, against Lucas Davison and Michael Beard, respectively. Christian Lance was able to reverse an earlier decision to knock off Luke Luffman, and Steveson, Cassioppi, and Parris all found bonus points. Cassioppi and Parris will face one another for the second time in their careers, and Gable Steveson will presumably eat Christian Lance, live on television.
Here’s a fun one for you statheads:
Semifinalists by school:— Big Ten Wrestling (@B1GWrestling) March 6, 2021
8 - @Hawks_Wrestling
7 - @HuskerWrestling
5 - @umichwrestling
4 - @pennstateWREST
3 - @GopherWrestling, @wrestlingbucks
2 - @wrestlingmsu, @NUWrestle, @PurdueWrestling, @RUWrestling
1 –@IlliniWrestling, @BadgerWrestling#B1GWrestle
I’m not cool like whoever does the football predictions, so I’ll just put our predictions out in plain text: (125) We all have Lee beating Foley. WSR, Kind of..., and HWAHSQB have Schroder, while I (Atinat) have Heinselman. (133) We all have RBY and ADS facing off, and while (141) we all have Eierman over Red, HWAHSQB and me have Lee while the Minnesconsin duo have Rivera. (149) Everyone has Sasso, while only WSR picked Blockhus to beat Lovett. School loyalty, I suppose. (157) We’ve all got Deakin over Coleman, and WSR and me have Brayton Lee avenging his sudden victory loss, while the other two have Kaleb Young repeating. (165) Everyone has Marinelli facing Ethan Smith in the final, and we’ve all got Kemerer at (174), but WSR alone has him facing Starocci. Everyone has Brooks v Venz at (184), which is a break of consistency in an inconsistent weight, so I’m sure we will be wrong. (197) WSR and I have Schultz, and WSR has Jacob Warner where everyone else has Myles Amine. Appreciate the confidence. Wish I could share it. (285) Everyone, of course, has Steveson, but I’m alone in picking Tony Pins to knock off Mason Parris.
Make your predictions below, and behave, I suppose.