Jan. 14, 2006
Cedar Falls, IA – The University of Iowa wrestling team competed in day one of the N.W.C.A/Cliff Keen National Duals Saturday at the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. The Hawkeyes were upset by Nebraska in the first round but bounced back to win three straight matches and will face Big Ten foe Michigan for fifth place Sunday afternoon.
Iowa’s day started on a sour note against the Cornhuskers, who recorded pins in the first two matches to gain an early 12-0 lead. Paul Donahoe pinned Lucas Magnani (125) and Patrick Aleksanyan pinned Daniel Dennis (133) for the early advantage. Alex Tsirtsis (141) recorded Iowa’s first points with a 7-5 decision and Ty Eustice (149) followed with a 12-4 major decision to put the match score at 12-7. Joe Johnston (157) recorded Iowa’s third straight decision of the match but Nebraska won four of the final five bouts, including wins over Eric Luedke (165), Mark Perry (174), Paul Bradley (184) and Dan Erekson (197). Matt Fields (Hwt) picked up a decision for the final three points of the match.
Next up for the Hawkeyes was Northern Illinois in the wrestleback bracket and they came away with a 24-6 victory. After Magnani (125) fell 2-5 to Pat Castillo, Iowa tallied seven straight decisions. Winning wrestlers included Dennis (133), Tsirtsis (141), Eustice (149), Johnston (157), Luedke (165), Ben Stedman (174) and Bradley (184). Derek Hunsinger from Northern Illinois broke the Hawkeye winning streak, defeating Erekson (197), 4-6 but Fields (Hwt) followed with a 6-3 decision.
Iowa moved on to face Oklahoma and defeated the Sooners, 21-15. Magnani (125) was defeated by Sam Hazewinkel to give the Sooners an early 3-0 advantage but a major decision by Dennis (133) gave Iowa a 4-3 lead. Oklahoma’s Teyon Ware followed with a 3-2 win over Tsirtsis (149) to give the Sooners a 6-4 lead. Eustice (149) gave the Hawkeyes a boost with a 25-9 technical fall and Johnston (157) gained a 21-8 major decision for a 13-6 Iowa advantage. Jarrod King of Oklahoma defeated Luedke (165) to pull the match within four points but Perry (174) pinned Cody Hilburn and Bradley (184) picked up a decision to seal the win for Iowa.
Iowa faced its second straight Big 12 opponent in Missouri for a chance to wrestle for fifth place and defeated the Tigers 31-12. The Hawkeyes won the first five bouts and jumped out to an early 18-0 lead. Magnani (125), Dennis (133), Tsirtsis (141) and Eustice (149) all picked up decisions while Johnston (157) pinned Missouri’s Michael Chandler. The Tigers recorded their first three points when Matt Pell gained a 6-3 decision over Cole Pape (165) and Ben Askren pinned Stedmen (174) to pull the Tigers within nine points. Raymond Jordan of Missouri defeated Bradley (184) with a last second takedown and the Tigers were down only six points with two matches left. Erekson (197) sealed the win for Iowa with a pin and Fields (Hwt) also recorded a pin in the final match.
The Hawkeyes and Wolverines will face off at 1 p.m. Sunday in Cedar Falls for fifth place.