WHAT: 2018 Big Ten Wrestling Tournament
WHERE: Breslin Center (East Lansing, MI)
Session I: Saturday, March 3, 9 AM CT
Session II: Saturday, March 3, 3:30 PM CT
Session III: Sunday, March 4, 11:00 AM CT
Session IV (Championships): Sunday, March 4, 2 PM CT
TV: none (Sessions I-III), BTN (Session IV)
STREAMING: BTN Plus ($), Flowrestling ($)
BRACKET: available here
Yeah, that sucked.
SESSION II RESULTS
125: #3 Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State) DEC (2-1) #2 Spencer Lee
149: #2 Brandon Sorensen DEC (7-2) #3 Ryan Deakin (Northwestern)
157: #4 Micah Jordan (Ohio State) FALL (5:48) #1 Michael Kemerer
285: #1 Adam Cool (Michigan) FALL (2:13) #4 Sam Stoll
This was where things went well and truly pear-shaped for Iowa at the 2018 Big Ten Wrestling Tournament, as Iowa doubled down a fairly underwhelming quarterfinals performance with an outright miserable semifinals performance, going 1-3. Spencer Lee got things started with a narrow 2-1 loss to Nathan Tomasello, reversing the result of their dual meet match. Once again, Lee was unable to get a takedown on Tomasello; this time it proved costly. Brandon Sorensen provided the only bright spot for Iowa in the semis, recording a decisive 7-2 win over Deakin thanks to a pair of third-period takedowns. Michael Kemerer got pinned in the third period against Micah Jordan in the 157 semis and Sam Stoll followed that up by getting pinned in the first period by Adam Coon. Good times.
141: Vince Turk DEC (3-1) Sal Profaci (Michigan)
141: Vince Turk DEC (5-4) #4 Chad Red (Nebraska)
165: #2 Alex Marinelli DEC (9-3) #9 Te'Shan Campbell (Ohio State)
165: #2 Alex Marinelli DEC (11-4) #6 Nick Wanzek (Minnesota)
174: #7 Joey Gunther DEC (2-1) Logan Ritchie (Michigan State)
174: #7 Joey Gunther DEC (5-4 OT) #6 Devin Skatzka (Indiana)
184: Mitch Bowman DEC (6-4 OT) #5 Nick Gravina (Rutgers)
184: #8 Brandon Krone (Minnesota) DEC (11-7) Mitch Bowman
197: #3 Cash Wilcke DEC (6-3) David-Brian Whisler (Maryland)
197: #3 Cash Wilcke DEC (4-2) #7 Zack Chakonis (Northwestern)
The only saving grace for Iowa in Session II was in the consolation bracket, where Iowa wrestlers went 9-1. Turk, Marinelli, Gunther, Bowman, and Wilcke also all secured auto-bids for the NCAA Tournament, which is a very good thing in the case of Turk, Bowman, and Gunther, as their wildcard cases were of varying levels of strength. Turk and Bowman provided the most impressive wins of the consolation bracket, with Turk edging by #4 seed Chad Red in his second match of the consolation session and Bowman defeating Gravina in sudden victory. Red has been a ranked guy at 141 most of the season, so that's probably Turk's best win of the season. Likewise, Gravina has been a fringe Top 10 guy at 184 for the past two seasons, so that's definitely Bowman's best win. And it was must-win as well, because a loss there would have ended his tournament and left him hoping for an at-large bid. I think Bowman might have gotten one, but much better for it not to be an issue at all.
Beyond that, Alex Marinelli responded well to the disappointment of his narrow loss to Taylor Massa in the quarterfinals, cruising by both Campbell and Wanzek. Joey Gunther was able to grind out a pair of close wins to keep rolling along at 174, while Cash Wilcke won a pair of matches, too.
SESSION III + IV
149: #2 Brandon Sorensen vs #1 Zain Retherford (Penn State)
Iowa's lone finalist is Brandon Sorensen, who's facing Zain Retherford. As you probably know, Sorensen has never ever beaten Retherford. Unless a meteor hit the Penn State team's hotel overnight, I don't expect that result to change today.
125: #2 Spencer Lee vs #4 Sebastian Rivera (Northwestern)
141: Vince Turk vs #2 Nick Lee (Penn State)
157: #1 Michael Kemerer vs #6 Andrew Crone (Wisconsin)
165: #2 Alex Marinelli vs #4 Richie Lewis (Rutgers)
174: #7 Joey Gunther vs #5 Johnny Sebastian (Northwestern)
184: Mitch Bowman vs #7 Ricky Robertson (Wisconsin) [7th Place Match]
197: #3 Cash Wilcke vs #4 Kevin Beazley (Michigan)
285: #4 Sam Stoll vs #6 Conan Jennings (Northwestern)
Iowa has a whopping eight wrestlers still going in the consolation bracket, so huzzah for that? It's better than being eliminated from the tournament, I suppose. All but Bowman are guaranteed at least a sixth-place finish. If Lee, Turk, Marinelli, Gunther, Wilcke, and Stoll win their opening matches today, they'll wrestle for third later in the day. If they lose those matches, they'll wrestle for fifth. Bowman is locked into the seventh place match. Just win, Iowa. Try to end this disappointing tournament with the best result possible.
Kemerer will medically forfeit to sixth place. Ugh.
Michael Kemerer will medically forfeit to sixth place. He'll share the sixth-place award stand with Jason Nolf.
— Hawkeye Wrestling (@Hawks_Wrestling) March 4, 2018
1) 137.5 -- Ohio State
2) 124.0 -- Penn State
3) 100.0 -- Michigan
4) 78.0 -- Iowa
5) 57.0 -- Minnesota
I don't think Iowa can finish any worse than fourth -- it's highly unlikely that Minnesota can make up that 21-point deficit on Iowa -- but I also don't think they can probably finish any better than fourth, either. It's also highly unlikely that Iowa can make up that 22-point deficit on Michigan. They would probably need to finish 3rd in as many weights as possible, rack up bonus points along the way, and hope Michigan whiffs in pretty much all of their finals.
The usual rules apply.