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Iowa locks up their first NCAA title since 2010, Oklahoma State trails Penn State for second by two points after Saturday morning’s medal round

by Mike Willis, USA Wrestling

Feature photo of Iowa heavyweight Tony Cassioppi courtesy of Larry Slater

St. Louis, Mo. – Hawkeye fans won’t need to wait until tonight’s finals to start celebrating, as the University of Iowa clinched their 24th NCAA team title in program history during this morning’s medal round session. It is their first since 2010.

Leading the way for Iowa were third-place finishers Austin DeSanto at 133 pounds and Tony Cassioppi at 285 pounds. DeSanto downed Arizona State’s Michael McGee by technical fall, 19-4, in the consolation semifinals before taking out Virginia Tech’s Korbin Myers with a 10-6 decision for third. Cassioppi earned an 8-0 major decision over Wisconsin’s Trent Hillger in the consolation semifinals and then defeated Arizona State’s Cohlton Schultz for the second time in the tournament, 5-0.

Two other Hawkeyes who wrapped up their tournaments in this morning’s session were Jacob Warner, who finished fourth at 197 pounds, and Kaleb Young, who placed seventh at 157 pounds. Iowa has three wrestlers contending for individual titles in tonight’s finals including two-time NCAA champion Spencer Lee at 125 pounds, Jaydin Eierman at 141 pounds and Michael Kemerer at 174 pounds.

Penn State sits in second place with Oklahoma State hot on their heels, trailing the Nittany Lions by only two team points. PSU won both their matches in this morning’s session, with freshmen Michael Beard and Greg Kerkvliet finishing seventh at 197 pounds and 285 pounds respectively. Beard earned a sudden victory decision over Wyoming’s Stephen Buchanan, 8-6, while Kerkvliet claimed a decisive major decision over Ohio State’s Tate Orndorff, 13-1.

The Nittany Lions have four wrestlers in tonight’s finals, but only top-seeded Aaron Brooks at 184 pounds is favored. Roman Bravo-Young (133), Nick Lee (141) and Carter Starocci (174) are all seeded second, and will face the No. 1 seed in their weight classes.

Four Oklahoma State All-Americans concluded their tournament this morning. Boo Lewallen and Dakota Geer finished fifth at 141 pounds and 184 pounds respectively, while Travis Wittlake placed fourth at 165 pounds. No. 33 seed Wyatt Sheets, the last man into the 157 pound bracket, finished his improbable run to All-American status in eighth place.

The Cowboys have two wrestlers in the finals and are favored in both of their matchups. True freshman No. 4 AJ Ferrari takes on No. 6 Nino Bonaccorsi of Pittsburgh at 197 pounds. At 133 pounds, 2019 NCAA finalist Daton Fix will go head-to-head with Penn State’s Roman Bravo-Young in the first match of tonight’s finals, with team race implications looming large.

The finals begin at 6:00 p.m. CST and will be aired live on ESPN.

2021 NCAA Div. I Championships

At St. Louis, Mo

Team scores after Session 6 (Top 16 Teams)
1. Iowa 125.0
2. Penn State 97.5
3. Oklahoma State 95.5
4. Arizona State 74.0
5. Michigan 69.0
6. NC State 68.0
7. Missouri 64.0
8. Minnesota 60.0
9. Ohio State 46.5
10. Northwestern 45.0
11. Pittsburgh 40.5
12. Nebraska 38.0
13. Rutgers 37.5
14. Virginia Tech 36.5
15. Iowa State 33.5

Finals Matches
125: No. 1 Spencer Lee (Iowa) vs. No. 3 Brandon Courtney (Arizona State)
133: No. 1Daton Fix (Oklahoma State) vs. No. 2 Roman Bravo-Young
141: No. 1 Jaydin Eierman (Iowa) vs. No. 2 Nick Lee (Penn State)
149: No. 1 Sammy Sasso (Ohio State) vs. No. 2 Austin O’Connor
157: No. 4 Jesse Dellavecchia (Rider) vs. No. 3 David Carr (Iowa State)
165: No. 8 Shane Griffith (Stanford) vs. No. 3 Jake Wentzel (Pittsburgh)
174: No. 1 Michael Kemerer (Iowa) vs. No. 2 Carter Starocci (Penn State)
184: No. 1 Aaron Brooks (Penn State) vs. No. 3 Trent Hidlay (NC State)
197: No. 4 AJ Ferrari (Oklahoma State) vs. No. 6 Nino Bonaccorsi (Pittsburgh)
285: No. 1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota) vs. No. 2 Mason Parris (Michigan)

Session 6 medal match results
3rd – Patrick McKee (Minnesota) MD Drew Hildebrandt (Central Michigan) 5-3
5th - Taylor LaMont (Utah Valley) DEC Sam Latona (Virginia Tech), 4-1
7th – Killian Cardinale (West Virginia) DEC Eric Barnett (Wisconsin), 12-7

3rd - Austin DeSanto (Iowa) DEC Korbin Myers (Virginia Tech) , 10-6
5th – Lucas Byrd (Illinois) FALL Michael McGee (Arizona State), 6:17
7th - Chris Cannon (Northwestern) MD Louie Hayes (Virginia), 11-3

3rd -Tariq Wilson (NC State) MD Sebastian Rivera (Rutgers) 15-5
5th - Dylan Duncan (Illinois)DEC Chad Red (Nebraska), 3-0
7th -Zachary Sherman (North Carolina) DEC Clay Carlson (South Dakota State), 11-4

3rd - Yahya Thomas (Northwestern) DEC Boo Lewallen (Oklahoma State), 5-3
7th – Jaden Abas (Stanford) DEC Jonathan Millner (Appalachian State), 5-3

3rd – Ryan Deakin (Northwestern) DEC Jacori Teemer (Arizona State), 1-0
5th – Hayden Hidlay (NC State) MD Brayton Lee (Minnesota), 11-2
7th – Kaleb Young (Iowa) DEC Wyatt Sheets (Oklahoma State), 3-2

3rd – Keegan O`Toole (Missouri) DEC Travis Wittlake (Oklahoma State), 4-3
5th – Ethan Smith (Ohio State) DEC Zach Hartman (Bucknell), 7-5 (SV1)
7th – Cameron Amine (Michigan) DEF Anthony Valencia (Arizona State), MFF

3rd – Mikey Labriola (Nebraska) DEC Bernie Truax (Cal Poly), 8-3
5th – Logan Massa (Michigan) DEF Demetrius Romero (Utah Valley) (MFF)
7th – Daniel Bullard (NC State) DEF Jackson Turley (Rutgers), MFF

3rd – Parker Keckeisen (Northern Iowa) DEC over John Poznanski (Rutgers), 5-4
5th – Dakota Geer (Oklahoma State) DEC Brit Wilson (Northern Illinois), 6-0
7th - Hunter Bolen (Virginia Tech) DEC Lou Deprez (Binghamton), 6-3
3rd Place Match

3rd – Myles Amine (Michigan) DEC Jacob Warner (Iowa), 5-3
5th – Rocky Elam (Missouri) DEC Jake Woodley (Oklahoma), 9-3
7th – Michael Beard (Penn State) DEC Stephen Buchanan (Wyoming), 10-8 (SV-1)

3rd – Tony Cassioppi (Iowa) 13-3 DEC Cohlton Schultz (Arizona State), 5-0
5th – Gannon Gremmel (Iowa State) DEC Trent Hillger (Wisconsin), 10-7
7th – Greg Kerkvliet (Penn State) MD Tate Orndorff (Ohio State) 13-1