Day 2, and Jarrett Degen is still alive. He kicked off his tournament in style yesterday morning with a 9-5 win over the #13 seed, Colton McCrystal but then fell 7-5 in the second round to the #4 seed, Troy Heilmann of North Carolina. Now that he’s in the consolations there is no margin for error - one loss and he’s done until next November. But his draw continues to give him a shot as he has a path to reach tomorrow’s All American rounds without having to beat anyone seeded higher than #12.
Where: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio
When: Thursday March 15th - Saturday March 17th
TV/Stream: All matches, all mats on WatchESPN plus coverage on a mix of ESPNU, ESPN2, and ESPN. Details below.
Friday, March 16th
10AM: Quarterfinals, Consolation Round 2, Consolation Round 3 | WatchESPN & ESPNU
7PM: Semifinals, Consolation Round 4, Round of 12 | WatchESPN & ESPN
Saturday, March 17th
10AM: Consolation Semifinals, 3rd, 5th, & 7th Place matches | WatchESPN & ESPNU
7PM: Finals | WatchESPN & ESPN2
Team Scores After Day 1
Post Session 2
|12||South Dakota State||11|
|41||Army West Point||3|
|41||North Dakota State||3|
|54||Franklin & Marshall||1|
|65||Southern Illinois Edwardsville||0|
Iowa State Lineup
Degen will start the day in the consolations against unseeded (ranked 17th or 16th depending on where you look) Steve Bleise of Minnesota. To get to this point Bleise opened up yesterday with a 7-11 loss to the #3 seed, Grant Leeth of Missouri and then picked up a 6-3 win over unseeded Cole Martin of Wisconsin in last night’s consolation round. Looking at their overall record, best wins, and common opponents I think this is somewhere between a tossup and Degen being a slight favorite. The biggest differentiator in their resume’s is that Bleise wrestled Colton McCrystal of Nebraska twice this year and came up short both times, while Degen just knocked McCrystal off yesterday in the opening round. If Degen comes out and wrestles this morning like he did on Thursday morning I think he’ll pick up the win and keep himself alive for another round.
Since the number of possible opponents grows with each new match, if Degen wins this morning I’ll provide updates in the comments with analysis for any additional matches.
Choo Choo! When brackets first came out I tweeted out about how good of a draw Degen had received. And with #15 seeded Perry knocking off #2 seeded Sorenson last night his draw opened up even more. Degen’s most likely path to AA at this point involves beating an unseeded guy, the #12 seed (who despite being seeded higher than McCrystal is ranked below him in every ranking), and then the #15 seed. The seas have parted for Degen. But that’s only half the battle. Even with a great draw you still have to earn your way. I think Degen has about a 50% chance of still being alive when the day is over. I see two possibilities for today - either he goes 1-1 with a win over Bleise and then a loss in the next round to #12 Blees of Virginia Tech or unseeded Krivus of Virginia, or he goes 3-0 on the day and makes a run all the way to Saturday.
We’ll have a recap, and hopefully also a preview, up on Saturday morning.