Three Buckeyes Advance to Semifinals of Big Ten Championships
March 3, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio– A trio of Buckeyes advanced to the semifinals of the 2012 Big Ten Wrestling Championships and the No. 7 Ohio State wrestling team is in fifth place with 36 points after the first session at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Ind. Logan Stieber (133 pounds), Hunter Stieber (141 pounds), and Nick Heflin (174 pounds), as well as the remaining Buckeye contenders will resume action in the second session at 5 p.m. Saturday.
Penn State leads the field with 78.5 points, while Iowa (69.3) is second and Minnesota (59.0) rounds out the Top 3.
L. Stieber, redshirt freshman from Monroeville, Ohio, began his first conference championship with a pin, downing Wisconsin’s Shane McQuade in 2:43. The Buckeye, who now leads the team with 26 victories as the No. 1 seed, scored another bonus point victory in his second match of the session, a 13-2 win over No. 8 Frank Martellotti of Penn State.
After receiving a first-round bye, No. 2-seed H. Stieber used a 6-3 decision against Brandon Nelsen of host Purdue to also qualify for his first-career appearance in the league championships semifinals. The younger brother of L. Stieber, H. Stieber is a true freshman with 23 wins on the season.
The 2011 Big Ten Championship runner-up, redshirt sophomore Heflin will face No. 1 Ed Ruth in the semifinals in a rematch of the championship bout from a year ago. The Buckeye from Massillon, Ohio, dropped an 8-5 decision to Ruth in that match. En route to the 2012 semifinals, Heflin, the No. 5 seed, first beat No. 12 Frank Cousins 14-3 before scoring a takedown with just two seconds remaining in the match to beat No. 4 Justin Zeerip of Michigan.
Seven Buckeyes – Johnni Dijulius (125 pounds), Cam Tessari (149 pounds), Josh Demas (157 pounds), Derek Garcia (165 pounds), C.J. Magrum (184 pounds), Andrew Campolattano (197 pounds) and Peter Capone (HWT) – will seek a third-place finish when they begin wrestleback action at 5 p.m. Saturday.
A true freshman from Aurora, Ohio, Dijulius suffered a 6-2 setback to Penn State’s and third-seed Nico Megaludis in his first match of the day and now will face Indiana’s Zach Zimmer this evening.
Tessari was victorious in his opening bout, pinning No. 12 Frank Baer (Wisconsin) in 3:19. However, the Buckeye freshman from Monroeville, Ohio, lost 6-5 to No. 4-seed Ivan Lopouchanski (Purdue) in his next match. Tessari, a fifth seed, will meet No. 11 Skylar Galloway of Nebraska next.
A first-round bye followed by a 7-2 loss to No. 4 Anthony Jones (Michigan State), sent No. 5 Demas to the wrestlebacks. The redshirt freshman from Columbus will contend against Wisconsin’s Shawn Perry in the second session.
Garcia began his initial Big Ten championships vs. tough competition, facing defending league and NCAA champion David Taylor of Penn State. Garcia, a freshman who hails from Sedro Woolley, Wash., lost 20-5 and will look to rebound tonight vs. No. 7 Cody Yohn of Minnesota in wrestlebacks.
A redshirt junior, Magrum went 1-1 in the opening session, defeating Michigan’s David Johnson 6-4, before dropping an 8-1 decision to Iowa’s Grant Gambrall. The Oak Harbor, Ohio, native and fifth seed will meet Robert Kellogg next.
A last second takedown by Penn State’s Morgan McIntosh prevented Buckeye freshman and sixth-seed Campolattano from advancing to the semifinals. Campolattano, a Bound Brook, N.J., native and McIntosh were forced into overtime where the Nittany Lion prevailed in the waning moments 3-1. Prior to his heartbreaking loss, Campolattano shut out Michigan State’s Nick McDiarmid 4-0. Campolattano and Northwestern’s John Schoen will meet later this evening.
Concluding the opening session of the championships, Capone advanced to the quarterfinals via a default by No. 8 Roger Vukobratovich (Purdue). The ninth-seed, Capone (Johnson City, N.Y.), then lost to No. 1 Tony Nelson (fall: 2:46). With third place still in sight, Capone will face No. 7 Adam Chalfant of Indiana.
2012 Big Ten Wrestling Championships