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Wrestling: For Rutgers and B1G it's Tourney Time

The dual match season is over. It's tournament time in America.

Roy DeBoer - used with permission

The big story in college wrestling this past week has been the NWCA National Duals at Iowa.  It was a battle as the last two uneaten teams in the country faced off.  At the end of the day, it was 24-0 Missouri topping Iowa by an 18-12 score.

The match was broadcast live on BTN, a coup for the network and a treat for wrestling fans.  The championship is the first in Missouri's history and the Tigers become just the seventh program to claim a National Duals title, joining Oklahoma State, Minnesota, Iowa, Penn State, Cornell and Iowa State as event winners.

Iowa head coach Tom Brands said it was just tough, hard-nosed wrestling. "They rode tough on top and they control tied us to death. They weren't rides where they have tricks. They are hard, driving forward type rides. They came in to beat us and they did at six weights."

Five matches featured two wrestlers ranked sixth or better, and Missouri won four of the six, starting at 125 where second-ranked Alan Waters reversed fifth-ranked Thomas Gilman in the first tiebreak to win 5-4.

Rutgers Final Dual

Bonus-point wins at 141, 149, 157 and 285 pounds provided all the firepower necessary for the No. 23 Rutgers wrestling team last Thursday night in a convincing 28-9 win against Drexel at the Daskalakis Athletic Center.  The victory closed the Rutgers dual season at 14-7, as the Scarlet Knights will now rest and prepare for the 2015 Big Ten Championships from March 7-8 in Columbus, Ohio.

"I liked the way we wrestled," said head coach Scott Goodale. "I think we wrestled really, really good on top. Our guys are starting to believe in that top-game and we're winning matches there."

A pin by 141-pounder Anthony Ashnault in the second match of the night set the bonus-point trend and gave the Scarlet Knights a 6-3 lead they would not relinquish. The No. 9/7/11/9-ranked Ashnault, who has won six-straight, built upon his team-best overall and dual record entering the postseason, as he closes the regular season 23-4.

A bout later, No.18/14/16/19 149-pounder Ken Theobold turned his oppnent twice in the third period for five near fall points and a 9-1 major decision. The win allowed Theobold to surpass his career-best win total from last season, making him 23-5 on the year.

Redshirt junior 157-pounder Anthony Perrotti continued his resurgence with his sixth win in a row in the form of a 15-0 tech fall.  Perrotti is now 18-6, 13-5  in duals.

No. 15/17/19/13 heavyweight Billy Smith made it two wins in a row with an 11-2 major over Drexel's Alex Foley, his second victory against Foley on the year. Smith (14-6, 11-6 Duals) is now three wins shy of the 70-victory mark for his career.

Along with the bonus points, RU registered a trio of wins by decision, the first coming at 174 pounds from redshirt sophomore Phillip Bakuckas, where he connected on a takedown 29 seconds into sudden victory for the 2-0 decision.  Also earning wins by decision were junior 197-pounder Hayden Hrymack and 125-pounder Josh Patrick.

Roy DeBoer used with permission

The Scarlet Knights enter preparations for their first trip to the Big Ten Championships, scheduled for March 7-8 in Columbus, Ohio.

No. 23 Rutgers 28, Drexel 9

133: No. 15/14/16/14 Kevin Devoy Jr. (DU) dec. over No. 17/15/NR/16 Scott DelVecchio (RU), 4-2

141: No. 9/7/11/9 Anthony Ashnault (RU) wins by fall over Andrew Mauriello (DU), 2:52

149: No. 18/14/16/19 Ken Theobold (RU) major dec. over Matt Cimato (DU), 9-1

157: No. 13/18/10/16 Anthony Perrotti (RU) tech fall over Noel Blanco (DU), 15-0

165: Nick Elmer (DU) dec. over Mikey Simmons (RU), 3-1

174: No. NR/19/NR/NR Phillip Bakuckas (RU) dec. over Stephen Loiseau (DU), 2-0 (SV)

184: Alex DeCiantis (DU) dec. over Anthony Pafumi (RU), 4-2 (TB2)

197: Hayden Hrymack (RU) dec. over Brandon Litten (DU), 7-2

285: No. 15/17/19/13 Billy Smith (RU) major dec. over Alex Foley (DU), 11-2

125: Josh Patrick (RU) dec. over Zach Fuentes (DU), 7-5

Rankings (-/-/-): InterMatThe Open MatWIN Magazine/ Flo Wrestling (Feb. 17)

Rutgers in the Rankings

As a team, the Knights are ranked as high as No. 21 in the USA Today/NWCA Coaches poll.  It is the second time in three years that Rutgers finished in the top 25.  Rutgers also moved up one spot to No. 22 with Intermat.

Individual Rankings

Intermat

The Open Mat

WIN Magazine

FloWrestling

Scott DelVecchio 133 lb  (18-8, 12-6 Dual)

17

17

NR

16

Anthony Ashnault 141 lb (23-4, 19-2 Dual)

9

7

11

9

Ken Theobold 149 lb (23-5, 17-3 Dual)

18

14

16

19

Anthony Perrotti 157 lb (18-6, 13-5 Dual)

11

17

9

16

Phillip Bakuckas 174 lb (19-11, 12-9 Dual)

NR

18

NR

NR

Billy Smith 285 lb (14-6, 11-6 Dual)

15

18

19

13

Records through 2/24

NCAA Coaches Panel

The next round of coaches' panel rankings will be released in conjunction with the RPI on Thursday, February 26 along with the NCAA releasing the number of qualifiers per qualifying tournamen.  The coaches panel is a factor in seeding at the NCAA Tournament.

Individual Rankings

Coaches Panel

NCAA RPI

Scott DelVecchio

15

21

Anthony Ashnault

8

9

Ken Theobold

16

9

Anthony Perrotti

17

18

Phillip Bakuckas

19

21

Billy Smith

14

--

Around the Big Ten

At 17-1, Iowa not only won the Big Ten regular season title, it also had the best overall record of any B1G squad.  And it outscored its opponents in those 17 wins by an average of 26.3 points/match.  In its wins, Iowa was scoring almost 33 points/match while relinquishing just 6.4.

B1G Rankings  - Intermat

Imagine being the No. 10 wrestler in the country at your weight class....and knowing you have an uphill battle to try to win your conference championship.  That's what Illinois'  Zach Brunson has to face at 174 pounds.  Or how about being No. 8 in the country, yet knowing you might not get the top seed...or even one of the top three seeds...in your own tournament?  That's Michigan's Brian Murphy at 157.  Based on this week's Intermat rankings, that's what may happen with those wrestlers.  Such is life in the Big Ten.

The 2015 Big Ten Wrestling Championships will be held from March 7-8 at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Last season, Penn State won its fourth straight Big Ten Championships title, while Iowa leads all schools with 34 Big Ten Championships titles.

And what will top four seeds look like when the Big Ten Championships open?  Maybe something like this:


125



133


Likely Seed

Wrestler

School


Wrestler

School

1

Jesse Delgado

Illinois


Chris Dardanes

Minnesota

2

Thomas Gilman

Iowa


Ryan Taylor

Wisconsin

3

Nathan Tomasello

Ohio State


Jimmy Gulibon

Penn State

4

Jordan Conaway

Penn State


Cory Clark

Iowa








141



149


Likely Seed

Wrestler

School


Wrestler

School

1

Logan Stieber

Ohio State


Jason Tsirtsis

Northwestern

2

Nick Dardanes

Minnesota


Brandon Sorensen

Iowa

3

Josh Dziewa

Iowa


Hunter Stieber

Ohio State

4

Anthony Abidin

Nebraska


Zack Beitz

Penn State








157



165


Likely Seed

Wrestler

School


Wrestler

School

1

Isaiah Martinez

Illinois


Isaac Jordan

Wisconsin

2

Dylan Ness

Minnesota


Bo Jordan

Ohio State

3

James Green

Nebraska


Taylor Walsh

Indiana

4

Brian Murphy

Michigan


Pierce Harger

Northwestern








174



184


Likely Seed

Wrestler

School


Wrestler

School

1

Robert Kokesh

Nebraska


Sammy Brooks

Iowa

2

Matt Brown

Penn State


Dominic Abounader

Michigan

3

Mike Evans

Iowa


Kenny Courts

Ohio State

4

Logan Storley

Minnesota


Brett Pfarr

Minnesota








197



Hwt


Likely Seed

Wrestler

School


Wrestler

School

1

Kyle Snyder

Ohio State


Connor Medbery

Wisconsin

2

Morgan McIntosh

Penn State


Mike McMullan

Northwestern

3

Scott Schiller

Minnesota


Bobby Telford

Iowa

4

Nathan Burak

Iowa


Adam Coon

Michigan

National Rankings

Intermat Dual Match Ranking

RANK

SCHOOL

RECORD

CONFERENCE

PREV

1

Missouri

24-0

MAC

2

2

Iowa

17-1

Big Ten

1

3

Cornell

17-2

EIWA

5

4

Ohio State

13-4

Big Ten

3

5

Minnesota

12-3

Big Ten

4

6

Oklahoma State

12-3

Big 12

6

7

Penn State

11-4

Big Ten

7

8

Lehigh

13-4

EIWA

12

9

Iowa State

11-2

Big 12

8

10

Virginia Tech

14-2

ACC

9

11

Nebraska

14-1

Big Ten

10

12

Illinois

13-5

Big Ten

11

16

Michigan

8-6

Big Ten

17

17

Wisconsin

9-4

Big Ten

18

22

Rutgers

14-7

Big Ten

23

24

Purdue

10-8

Big Ten

24

Final B1G Standings / Records


Conference

Overall


W-L-T

%

W-L-T

%

Iowa*

9-0-0

1.000

17-1-0

.944

Nebraska

8-1-0

.889

14-1-0

.933

Ohio State

8-1-0

.889

13-3-0

.813

Minnesota

7-2-0

.778

12-3-0

.800

Wisconsin

7-2-0

.778

9-4-0

.692

Penn State

6-3-0

.667

11-4-0

.733

Illinois

6-3-0

.667

13-5-0

.722

Michigan

4-5-0

.444

8-6-0

.571

Purdue

3-6-0

.333

10-8-0

.556

Rutgers

2-7-0

.222

14-7-0

.667

Northwestern

2-7-0

.222

11-8-0

.579

Michigan State

1-8-0

.111

5-13-0

.278

Indiana

0-9-0

.000

4-10-0

.286

Maryland

0-9-0

.000

5-15-0

.250

Through Feb. 22.
* Big Ten Dual Meet Champion

Big Ten Wrestler of the Week

Mike Evans, Iowa, Sr. - Enola, Pa. - Blair Academy (NJ)

Hawkeyesports.com

  • Defeated two ranked grapplers and posted a pin en route to a 3-0 performance over the weekend
  • Posted a 3-0 win over No. 18 Duke Pickett of Cornell and a 4-1 victory over No. 5 John Eblen of Missouri
  • Recorded his sixth fall of the season over Chattanooga's Sean Mappes (4:44)
  • Guided Iowa to a second-place finish at the NWCA National Duals
  • Improved to 24-1 overall and 9-1 against ranked opponents