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NCAA Wrestling Championships Day 2 Preview/Open Thread

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Day 1 Recap

Iowa State couldn't have asked for too much to go better on Day 1.  All six wrestlers are still alive and the Cyclones have three wrestlers in the Quarterfinals on Friday morning.  Iowa State is in 9th place at the end of the first day on the strength of 10 team wins and, more importantly, a trio of pins.

Top team scores:

1. Penn State (26.5)

2t. Minnesota (21.5)

2t. Oklahoma State (21.5)

4t. Iowa (20.5)

4t. Oklahoma (20.5)

6. Ohio State (19.5)

7. Edinburo (18.0)

8. Wisconsin (15.5)

9. Iowa State (15.0)

10t. Cornell (14.0)

10t. Nebraska (14.0)

10t. Virginia Tech 14.0

As with Yesterday, all matches will be streamed online via ESPN3.  Session III will also be on ESPNU and the Semifinals on Friday night will be on ESPN.

Friday's Schedule:

10:00AM: Championship Quarterfinals and 3rd round consolations ESPNU/ESPN3

7:00PM: Championship Semifinals and 4th round consolations, ESPN/ESPN3

Session III Preview

125 Pounds

Earl Hall wrestled at the top of his game on Thursday, knocking off the #13 seed and following it up with a dominating 8-1 win over the #4 seed.  Next up for Hall is #5 seed Dylan Peters of UNI in the Quarterfinals.  Peters owns two wins over Hall this season, a pin at the Vegas invite in December and an 11-2 win at the UNI dual.  But the matchup isn't quite as bad as it looks.  Hall was beating Peters handily in Vegas before getting caught with a cowcatcher.  And the Hall we saw on Thursday was the best we've seen him since that tournament in Vegas.  Peters will be favored but if Hall takes his shots rather than sitting back on his heals like he did during the dual there's no reason he can't pull the upset to push himself into the Semifinals.

141 Pounds

Dear Gabe Moreno,

My bad.  I shouldn't have doubted you.

Sincerely,

grappleCy

Gabe started off on Thursday by knocking off an opponent who had beaten him by a combined 23-0 this season.  And he ended his Thursday with a defensive pin during a scramble against the #16 seed.  Friday will start off in a similar situation for Moreno.  He will be matched up against the #15 seed, Anthony Collica of Oklahoma State (30-9).  Much like Lester on Thursday morning, Collica is 2-0 against Gabe this season.  However, the matches against Collica were much closer, with Gabe falling 0-4 at the Oklahoma State dual and 4-2 at Big XIIs.  Collica is the obvious favorite, but so was Lester, and so was Spisak.  Gabe is on a roll and hopefully he keeps it going on Day 2.

A win over Collica would likely give Gabe the #7 seed Zach Horan from Central Michigan (32-6) in the third round consolations.

165 Pounds

Cael Sanderson's chosen one, David Taylor, will be Moreno's opponent in the Quarterfinals.  Taylor beat Moreno by major decision at the All Star Classic to start the season and hasn't slowed down since.

Hopefully Moreno is channeling his inner David Owings Friday morning.  Especially since upsets elsewhere in the bracket means a loss to Taylor would put him in a brutal R12 match against either the #6 seed Mock of Chattanoogaor the #5 seed Moore of Iowa.

174 Pounds

Weatherman will get unseeded Austin Gabel of Virginia Tech (15-9).  They have not met this season but Weatherspoon beat Gabel 3-1 in Vegas.  So there's no reason for Weatherman not to get a win and take another step towards R12 or better.

A win against Gabel would give Weatherman either #14 seed Mark Martin of Ohio State (29-13) or #16 seed Matt Miller of Navy (23-6).  Like Gabel, Martin has not met Weatherman but Weatherspoon beat him 4-2 in Vegas. Miller of Navy hasn't met either of our 174 pounders and in has common results against all of the common opponents he has with Weatherman.

Weatherman will wrestle on Friday morning against wrestlers with similar resumes and accomplishments.  As long as Weatherman rises to the occasion like he did last year in Des Moines he should still be alive into the evening sessions.

184 Pounds

Weatherspoon was impressive in his victory on Thursday night.  Hopefully he saved some takedowns for Friday morning, because an upset on the championship side of the bracket has pushed the #4 seed, Max Thomusseit (20-4) down into the consolation bracket against him.  So what had been looking like a fairly easy ride to the round of 12 suddenly is a whole lot tougher.  My advice is he rubs Gabe Moreno's head for good luck.  Gabe clearly has enough to share.

197 Pounds

Gadson had a very Kyven-esque 5-3 win on Thursday night against returning All American Taylor Meeks of Oregon State and that pushed him into the Quarterfinals against #4 seeded Scott Schiller of Minnesota.  Schiller is the only wrestler to beat Gadson this season, though Gadson avenged those losses with a 6-4 win over Schiller at the Minnesota dual.  Schiller has fallen apart a bit at the seams in the last month of the season so I look for Gadson to pick up yet another of his tight 3-1 type victories to push his way into Friday nights semifinals.  Though since Kyven's career record against Schiller is 1-3 he might want to check in with Gabe Moreno for some of that good luck before stepping onto the mat.  Iowa State's hopes of a decent team finish will be resting heavily on the outcome of Kyven's match.

Session IV Preview

125 Pounds
Hall will be matched up against #15 seed Anthony Zanetta of Pitt (23-11).  Hall and Zanneta have not met this season and looking at their common opponents they seem very evenly matched.  But Hall has been wrestling extremely well in this tournament and as long as he comes out and wrestles Zanneta like he wrestled against Martinez and Peters he should have no trouble picking up a win and pushing himself into the medal rounds.

Their paths to get to the Round of Twelve:
Hall 7-3 over #13 Silver of Stanford
Hall 8-1 over #4 Martinez of Air Force
#5 Peters of UNI 4-2 (OT) over Hall

#15 Zanetta WBF (3:44) over Conor Youtsey of Michigan
#2 Nahshon Garrett of Cornell 6-0 over #15 Zanetta
#15 Zanetta 3-1 over Petrov of Bucknell
#15 Zannetaa 11-1 over Kory Mines of Edinburo



165 Pounds
Moreno will be matched up against #14 seed Dylan Palacio (35-9).  Moreno holds a 9-4 win over Palacio from the Vegas tournament back in December.  Which is a good sign.  However, Palacio has been putting together a great tournament and escaped a brutal set of consolation matches to reach the Round of Twelve.  There's no doubt that Palacio will be coming in to this match believing he can get a win.  But as long as Moreno gets back the fire and offense he had on Thursday he should be able to get the win and his second All American honors.

Their paths to get to the Round of Twelve.
#8 Moreno  WBF (2:31) over Ramon Santiago of Rider
#8 Moreno 8-5 over #9 Joe Booth of Hofstra
#1 David Taylor WBF (3:19) over #8 Moreno

#14 Palacio 11-0 over Harrison Hightower of Ohio
#3 Sulzer of Virginia 12-6 over #14 Palacio
#14 Palacio 5-2 over John Staudenmeyer of North Carolina
#14 Palacio 8-1 over #5 Nick Moore of Iowa



174 Pounds
Tanner gets the toughest matchup of the team tonight, #7 Tyler Wilps of Pitt (32-7).  Wilps owns an 11-7 win over Weatherman at the Southern Scuffle.  Tanner reached the Round of Twelve last season so he has at least matched that performance.  But it is going to take an exceptional performance, and probably a little bit of luck, for Tanner to reach the All American rounds. Tanner has not been wrestling at his best so far in this tournament so hopefully he was saving himself for the later rounds.

Their paths to get to the Round of Twelve:
#12 Weatherman WBF (2:09) over Levi Clemons of Chatanooga
#5 Matt Brown of Penn State 6-1 over #12 Weatherman
#12 Weatherman 4-3 (TB-1) over Austin Gabel of Virginia Tech
#12 Weatherman 4-3 over Mike Dessino of Bloomsberg

#7 Wilps 4-2 over Bradley Wukie of Penn
#7 Wilps over #10 Mike Ottinger of Central Michigan
#2 Andrew Howe of Oklahoma 5-2 over #7 Wilps



197 Pounds
Gadson #9 seeded Christian Boley of Maryland (28-6).  Boley and Gadson have not met this season and don't have any common opponents of note.  This match will likely come down to how Gadson responds to getting knocked out of the championship side of the bracket.  If he comes out wanting to win he should have no problem.  If he mopes from his earlier loss then Boley might send him to the showers. If he puts together a run tonight and tommorow morning there's a good chance he'll get another crack at Schiller in the 3rd place match.

Their paths to get to the Round of Twelve:
#5 Gadson 6-1 over Abram Ayala of Princeton
#5 Gadson 5-3 over #12 Meeks of Oregon State
#4 Schiller of Minnesota 6-4 over #4 Gadson

Cody Reed of Binghamton 3-1 (SV-1) over #9 Boley
#9 Boley 9-3 over James Fox of Harvard
#9 Boley over #7 Travis Rutt of Oklahoma by Medical Forfiet
#9 Boley 5-1 over #15 Braden Atwood of Purdue

Despite the disappointing morning, Iowa State is still in a good position to get 2-3 All Americans.  The brackets cleared out with upsets to give all four wrestlers in the Round of Twelve a shot at glory.