Hawkeyes Take No. 2 Seed to Final Four

Feb. 14, 2012

Weekly Release

The University of Iowa wrestling team competes in the final four round of the NWCA/Cliff Keen National Dual Tournament on Sunday on the campus of Oklahoma State. The tournament regional begins at 2 p.m. inside Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla. Iowa will be the #2 seed and face #3 Minnesota. Top-seeded Oklahoma State will wrestling #4 Illinois in the other semifinal dual. The winner of each semifinal will meet at 6 p.m. for the National Duals title. Consolation finals will also begin at 6 p.m.

The dual tournament will be broadcast on AM-800 KXIC and streamed online at hawkeyesports.com via Hawkeye All-Access. Steven Grace and Mark Ironside will have the call live from Gallagher-Iba Arena.

Live video streams are available at okstate.tv and livesportsvideo.com.

For the first time in tournament history, the National Duals began with 24 teams split into four regional tournaments. The winner of each regional tournament advanced to this week’s final four event to compete of the National Duals title. The Hawkeyes advanced to the final four site by winning the Iowa State Regional on Feb. 12. The Hawkeyes defeated Virginia Tech (31-3) in the semifinals before topping Oregon State (22-14) in the regional finals Illinois advanced to the championship site by winning the Cornell Regional. Minnesota won the Rutgers Regional and Oklahoma State won its host regional.

Including this season, Iowa has wrestled in 18 National Duals and has a 68-10-3 all-time record in the tournament. Iowa has won the title six times (1992, 1995, 1996, 2008, 2009, 2010), placed second three times (1994, 1997, 1998), third six times (1990, 1993, 2001, 2002, 2003), fifth once (2007) and sixth once (2006).

? Iowa has a combined 133-76-4 dual record against the tournament field.
? Iowa owns a 68-10-3 all-time record in 18 national dual appearances.
? Iowa has won the last three National Dual tournaments it has participated (2008, 2009, 2010).
? Iowa is 2-1 this season against the tournament field. That includes wins over Illinois (20-13), Minnesota (19-17) and a loss to Oklahoma State (17-16).
? Iowa has won three duals in a row against ranked opponents, raising its season record to 6-3 against ranked foes.

The Hawkeyes have met all three final four qualifiers once this season. The Hawkeyes have a 2-1 record against the tournament field, with wins over Illinois (20-13) and Minnesota (19-17). Oklahoma State defeated Iowa, 17-16, to hand the Hawkeyes their first loss in 84 duals.

Matt McDonough is on a 17-match winning streak, his longest such streak since winning 32 straight to start the 2009-10 season.

Matt McDonough, the top-ranked 125-pounder in the nation, is scheduled to face No. 2 Zach Sanders in the semifinals. McDonough is 5-0 in his career vs. Sanders, including a 7-1 decision less than one month ago when Sanders was ranked No. 1 and McDonough was ranked No. 2. Illinois’ Jesse Delgado is also in the tournament field. Should Illinois and Iowa meet after the semifinals, McDonough will have an opportunity to avenge his lone loss of the season. Delgado, currently ranked No. 6, upset top-ranked McDonough, 11-7, in overtime on Dec. 2. Delgado was ranked No. 15 at the time. McDonough earned a 14-4 major decision over Oklahoma State’s Jon Morrison earlier this season. He is 2-0 in his career vs. Morrison.

The 133 and 174-pound weight classes will each consist of four wrestlers ranked in Intermat’s top 10. Tony Ramos, ranked No. 3 at 133 pounds, will face Minnesota’s eighth-ranked Chris Dardanes in the semifinals. The winner advances to face either top-ranked Jordan Oliver (OSU) or No. 4 B.J. Futrell (Illinois). Ramos is 3-0 with wins over each opponent this season.

Ethen Lofthouse, ranked No. 8 at 174 pounds, will face Minnesota’s fifth-ranked Logan Storley in the semifinals. Storley beat Lofthouse 5-3 in their only meeting this season. The winner will face either No. 3 Chris Perry (Oklahoma State) or No. 9 Jordan Blanton (Illinois). Lofthouse lost to Perry 3-2 in overtime in their only meeting this season. He is 2-0 against Blanton, winning 6-1 in this year’s dual meeting and 8-6 in the Midlands’ semifinals.

#1 Seed — OKLAHOMA STATE (14-0)
? Oklahoma State leads the all-time series 18-26-2.
? The Cowboys have eight wrestlers ranked in Intermat’s top 20.
? Oklahoma State ended Iowa’s 84-dual unbeaten streak with a 17-16 win Jan. 7, 2012 inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The teams split 10 bouts (16-16), but Oklahoma State was awarded the decisive team point based on the third tiebreak criteria — match points (54-51).
? Iowa and Oklahoma State have met in the championship of the National Duals three times. Oklahoma State defeated Iowa in the finals in 1994 (17-15) and 1997 (21-13). The Hawkeyes defeated Oklahoma State 31-3 in the 1995 finals.

#3 Seed — MINNESOTA (12-3)
? Iowa leads the all-time series 69-24-1.
? The Hawkeyes have won seven straight in the series, including a 19-17 win Jan. 29, 2012 inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
? The teams split 10 bouts in their first meeting this season. Minnesota won a pair of major decisions but Iowa recorded a major decision (Moore, 157) and a pin (Evans, 165) to earn the two-point victory.
? Minnesota has seven wrestlers ranked in Intermat’s top 10.
? Minnesota’s last win in the series was a 29-13 win on Feb. 18, 2007.

#4 Seed — ILLINOIS (16-2)
? Iowa leads the all-time series 46-26-1.
? The Hawkeyes have won the last three meetings, including a 20-13 win Dec. 11, 2011, in Iowa City.
? Illinois has six wrestlers ranked in Intermat’s top 20.
? Head coach Jim Heffernan was a four-time All-American at Iowa from 1982-87. He won the 1986 150-pound NCAA title while wrestling for the Hawkeyes.
? Illinois’ last win in the series was a 24-13 win on Feb. 10, 2006.

Iowa’s overall dual meet record is 905-218-31 (.797) in 101 seasons. The Hawkeyes have won 23 national titles and 34 Big Ten titles. Iowa’s 51 NCAA Champions have won a total of 78 NCAA Individual titles, crowning six three-time and 15 two-time champions. The Hawkeyes’ 104 Big Ten champions have won a total of 188 conference titles. There have been seven four-time, 18 three-time and 27 two-time Iowa winners. Iowa’s 144 All-Americans have earned All-America status 291 times, including 17 four-time, 29 three-time and 38 two-time honorees.

The Hawkeyes saw their 84-match dual unbeaten streak end Jan. 7, 2012, when Oklahoma State topped Iowa, 17-16. The two teams were tied at 16 after splitting 10 bouts, so officials used the NCAA tiebreak criteria inserted during the offseason to determine a winner. The first tiebreak is match victories (5-5) and the second is falls/tech. falls (0-0). Oklahoma State eventually won on the third tiebreak criteria, match points (54-51).