Dec 17, 2017
On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, Saturday night’s scores and more here on Short Time Shots, I’m your host Hall of Fame wrestling writer, broadcaster and announcer Jason Bryant and baby, it’s cold outside. Anyone ever actually listen to the lyrics of that song? This day and age, conduct like that would get you fired and tarred and feathered on social media. What the heck is that guy’s problem? Anyway … cliché warnings are walking around this winter wonderland tonight.
It was hardly a silent night in college wrestling as one of the nation’s best tournaments, the Midwest Classic, completed its first day of action. I’ve always said there’s more to college wrestling than just the Division I teams and the Midwest Classic is a stellar event. Some might put it as say the Midlands or Southern Scuffle of Division II, despite there’s more than just Division II teams competing. Anyway, we’ll ring-a-ling, hear them ring right into the semifinals as UW-Parkside leads the field after the first day of competition with 68 points, followed by Findlay with 59.5, McKendree with 57.5 and Ashland with 57. Central Oklahoma isn’t far behind with 54.
What’s astounding about this is there are 22 different schools represented in the semifinals out of the 30 teams in the field. Parkside and Findlay each have five, while Ashland has four. Central Oklahoma and Maryville have three each.
You might remember Maleek Williams of Upper Iowa. Two years ago, he had a stroke ... and then later qualified for the NCAA Division II championships. Yes, the same season. Crazy. Anyway, he's into the semifinals for Upper Iowa where he'll face Sebastian Vidika of Ashland. Upsets disrupted things down low as ninth-ranked Carlos Jacquez will face freshman Joe Arroyo of Parkside in the bottom bracket semi.
At 133, top-ranked Dustin Kirk of King moved into the semis where he'll face Darius Bunch of West Liberty. Ninth-ranked Arik Furseth of Parkside will face Mary's Tate Barnhardt in the semis. Barnhardt knocked off seventh-ranked Naquan Hardy of McKendree 8-7 in the quarterfinals.
A pair of ranked wrestlers meet in the top bracket at 141. Darren Wynn of McKendree, ranked No. 1 in Division II will face Maryville's Will Roark, whom some of you may remember from Fargo. Roark is ranked No. 9 in Division II. Down low, Robert Mason of Ashland faces third-ranked Brandon Ball of Fort Hays State in the semifinals.
Parkside's Frank Yattoni knocked off second-ranked and top-seed
Rudy Guillen of Mary in the quarterfinals 2-0 at 149 pounds
Down low, Will Steltzen picked off fifth-ranked Logan Grass of Mercyhurst in the quarters. Steltzen will face second-seeded but top-ranked James Krischke of Maryville in the semifinals. Wild weight class there.
Shakeups were also around at 157 where Ryne Cokely, yes, THAT Ryne Cokely of Fort Hays State pinned third-ranked Ryan Strope of McKendree in the second round, but then fell to Parkside's 12th-ranked Pernevlon Sheppard in the quarterfinals. Sheppard will face unraked Austin Palmer of Newberry. Palmer beat fifth-ranked Heath Lange of Indianapolis 10-6 in the quarters. Up top, seventh-ranked Byran Dutton of Central Oklahoma will face NAIA runner-up Cam Tessari of Lindsey Wilson -- yes, THAT Cam Tessari.
Top semifinal will come in the bottom bracket at 165 as fourth-ranked Alonzo Turner of Findlay will face off with Lake Erie's Nick Vandermeer. Third-ranked Bret Romanzak of Ashland is up top facing off with Seton Hill's Zach Voytek.
Parkside's Nick Becker -- yes, another Becker still at Parkside -- is up top facing Nathan Vandermeer of Findlay, while down low, unheralded Miaden Vasilev of Maryville rolled into the semifinals beating two ranked foes, including sixth-ranked Brandon Supernaw of Western State Colorado. Yes, the full name of the school is now Western State Colorado University, not Western State College. Vasilev will try to take out his third straight ranked opponent -- fourth-ranked Nick Foster of McKendree in the semis at 174.
Lake Erie's Tyler Hughes and Findlay's Brad Metz will meet in the bottom bracket at 184 pounds. Both are ranked in the top eight in the country.
At 197 pounds, Limestone's fourth-ranked Matt Rudy will face seventh-ranked Wes Phipps of Mercyhurst in the top bracket semifinal, while 11th-ranked Konnor Schmidt of Western State Colorado will matchup with unseeded Armani Robinson of Findlay.
Second ranked Logan Hopp was injured in his second round bout and was forced to default out of the tournament. That left ninth-ranked Mimmo Lyttle of Findlay to face off with Dalton Weidl of Newman in the top bracket semifinal. Indianapolis, the hosts of the event, gets its lone semifinalist with eight-ranked Dylan Falkenberg. He'll face fourth-ranked Caleb Cotter in the semifinals. This one's streamed live on Trackwrestling and it's one helluva tournament.
The dual meet side of things had a very shiny nose, too. Ok, that … was not amusing.
Lock Haven improved to 4-0 after picking up three wins in the Bald Eagle Duals in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The 22nd-ranked Bald Eagles cruised past Division II Wheeling Jesuit 32-11 and Division III Messiah 34-6 before dispatching with EWL rival Bloomsburg 37-2 in the nightcap. Ronnie Perry knows when you’ve been sleeping, he scored three technical falls while Chance Marsteller, who knows when you’re awake, picked up a fall and two techs.
Central Michigan opened up its MAC schedule with a ho-hum 34-6 win over Northern Illinois on Saturday night. The 23rd-ranked Chippewas earned five bonus victories en route to the win. Heavyweight Matt Stencel scored a fall in 36 seconds for CMU. Cold never bothered him anyway.
A pair of old EWL wrestling foes tangled on Saturday with Clarion upending Pittsburgh 24-20. Trailing 14-9 with four matches left, Clarion went big with back-to-back falls by Dominic Rigous and Greg Bulsak put Clarion in position to win. Dustin Conti rocked the corncob pipe and button nose on the way to a tiebreaker victory over transfer Kellan Stout was the clincher.
No. 1 Johnson & Wales went over the river and through the woods to New York and smacked around a pair of junior colleges with both the A and B teams. The Wildcats beat Nassau 36-9 and Camden County 46-6.
Gator Boots Duals Nashville
Sleigh bells ring, are you listening Loras College? The fourth-ranked Duhawks improved to 7-0 on the season with three wins at the Gator Boots Duals in Nashville, take me to another place, Tennessee. Wait a minute, Tennessee isn’t a Christmas song. Anyway, Coach T.J. Miller’s team outlasted eight-ranked Baldwin Wallace 18-13 and also picked up another top-ten win, beating No. 9 Ferrum 34-7. Loras’ Jimmy Davis rocked around the Christmas tree, topping nationally ranked Collin Saunders at 149 pounds. In other action down there, Luther, which serves as the host of the event, went 4-0 beating Lakeland, Huntingdon, UW-Oshkosh and the University of the Ozarks. Wheaton swept the Jim Fox Duals in Dubuque beating host Dubuque, Concordia -- of Wisconsin -- and Nebraska Wesleyan.
I came across a roadkill dear … and that’s all I’ve got for Saturday, December 16.
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