For the first time in program history, Rutgers has a finalist at the NCAA Wrestling Championships. Nick Suriano will take on Iowa's Spencer Lee tonight at 8 pm on ESPN. He can continue making history if can win tonight’s bout.
Scott DelVecchio finished up in sixth place at 133 after a stunning and grueling run through the consolation brackets that saw him earn his first All American recognition.
Nick Suriano is the star right now for Rutgers. He is the face of the program with Anthony Ashnault on the sideline. He faces three seed freshman Spencer Lee (25-2) for the NCAA title. Lee won the Northern Iowa Open and took fifth at the Midlands, the tournament Suriano won back in December. The two have never met in college but have previously in high school (video here).
Scott DelVecchio (31-11) has been a warrior in this tournament. He came into the tournament unseeded, a virtually impossible position to be in to make the podium.
After losing his first match to 14 seed Korbin Myers, DelVecchio ran off five straight wins in the wrestlebacks before losing to NC State’s Tariq Wilson and going into the 5/6 consolation against Kaid Brock of Oklahoma State; Wilson won by major, 10-1. He scored 12.5 team points with his sixth place finish and bonus points. But DelVecchio’s efforts earned him a spot in Rutgers Wrestling history.
Congratulations, Scott DelVecchio, who is just the fourth Scarlet Knight since 1979 to go from unseeded to All-American, placing sixth in his weight class at 133 pounds.#RUWR | #RelentlessPursuit pic.twitter.com/6QzTxHkl4g— Rutgers Wrestling (@RUWrestling) March 17, 2018
Unseeded and wrestling an opening pigtail, Eleazar Deluca moved quickly to wrestlebacks. He won his first two bouts in the wrestlebacks. He finished 2-2, did not place and scored one team point.
John Van Brill was in an unexpected position of being on the verge of All American status, coming out of the 15 seed to win his first two bouts, including a revenge win over UNC’s Kennedy Monday. He ended up going 2-2 and scoring four team points. More importantly, JVB picked up some very big experience at the national level, pointing to a positive senior year next season.
Richie Lewis came in with a good seed and an early strong performance. He was pushed back into wrestlebacks where he won an additional two bouts. He finished 3-2 without placing and scored three team points.
Nick Gravina won his first but then dropped his second to three seed Ryan Preisch. He won his first wrestleback but finished 2-2, did not place and scored 1.5 team points.
PRESSER: Nick Suriano meets the national media after tonight's semifinal win over No. 1 Darian Cruz. pic.twitter.com/g3l8abdV0G— Rutgers Wrestling (@RUWrestling) March 17, 2018
Big Ten Results
Penn State....Ohio State....Penn State....Ohio State....Penn State....Ohio State
They came in as the two best and the results were just that as they battled back and forth with Penn State pulling ahead after Friday’s results.
After five sessions:
Rutgers is not locked in to tenth place. A wn in the finals scores four team points and Arizona State has a finalist and could, if Suriano doesn’t win, pass RU. In 2017, Rutgers finished 19th with 24.5 points. Twelve of the twenty wrestlers in the finals are from the Big Ten and there are four all Big Ten finals. At 197 it is an all ACC match.
The Finals Pairings
125: No. 4 Nick Suriano vs. No. 3 Spencer Lee
133: No. 1 Seth Gross, South Dakota State vs. No. 2 Stevan Micic, Michigan
141: No. 1 Bryce Meredith, Wyoming vs. No. 3 Yianni Diakomihalis, Cornell
149: No. 1 Zain Retherford, Penn State vs. No. 15 Ronald Perry, Lock Haven
157: No. 1 Hayden Hidlay, NC State vs. No. 3 Jason Nolf, Penn State
165: No. 1 Isaiah Martinez, Illinois vs. No. 3 Vincenzo Joseph, Penn State
174: No. 1 Zahid Valencia, Arizona State vs. No. 2 Mark Hall, Penn State
184: No. 1 Bo Nickal, Penn State vs. No. 2 Myles Martin, Ohio State
197: No. 4 Michael Macchiavello, NC State vs. No. 3 Jared Haught, Virginia Tech
285: No. 1 Kyle Snyder, Ohio State vs. No. 2 Adam Coon, Michigan