Gilman, Sorensen and Burak Advance to Finals

Dec. 30, 2015


EVANSTON, Illinois — Defending champion Nathan Burak has once again earned his slot in the finals of the Midlands Championship at 197 pounds. The top seed solidified the berth with a 4-2 decision over Nebraska’s Aaron Studebaker, seeded fifth. The win advances Burak’s Midlands record to 14-1, with nine consecutive victories.


Iowa continues to lead the pack in the team race with 136 total points, followed by Nebraska (130), Rutgers (108), North Carolina State (85.5) and Iowa State (64).

Burak, along with Thomas Gilman (125) and Brandon Sorensen (149), are the three Hawkeyes to advance beyond the semifinals. Iowa also has three wrestlers competing for third place finishes.

Gilman will be making his third consecutive Midlands Championship finals appearance at 125 pounds after overcoming fifth-seed Joshua Rodriguez (North Dakota State), 4-1. Gilman used a takedown, an escape, and 1:55 of riding time to secure his championship bid.

The Hawkeyes continued to dominate at 149, as Michael Kemerer, wrestling unattached, and Sorensen continued to advance through the bracket. Kemerer opened the session with a fall over the #12 seed Joey Delgado (Oregon St.) and went on to collect a 20-7 major decision over Iowa State’s Gabe Moreno. Despite his efforts, the freshman closed out the afternoon with a close loss to No. 4 Jake Sueflohn (Nebraska) and will wrestle for fifth this evening. Sorensen secured his first trip to a Midlands Championship final with a 7-4 decision over fourth seeded Jake Sueflohn (Nebraska) and will face No. 2 Jason Tsirtsis (Northwestern) in the championships of 149. This will be the fourth meeting between Sorensen and Tsirtsis, the previous bout ending in Northwestern’s favor with a sudden victory takedown. Sorensen trails in their head-to-head record, 1-2.

First-seeded Alex Meyer (174) and fourth-seeded Sammy Brooks (184) fell in the semifinals of their respective weights. Meyer fell 7-0 to No. 4 Cody Walters (Ohio U.), but came back to defeat 12th-seeded David Kocer (SDSU), 3-2. Brooks was overcome 7-2 by the top-seeded David Taylor (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club), who took third place in the U.S. World Team Trials this year. Brooks closed the session with an 8-7 decision over #6 Pete Renda (N. Carolina State), securing a third place berth.

After a 10-1 major decision loss to the No. 1 seed, Sam Stoll needed to work his way back from defeat. He faced No. 12 Dawson Peck (Maryland) in the consolation bracket and was trailing 7-4 with riding time when the freshman heavyweight turned his opponent and delivered a pin with 12 seconds remaining. The fall is Stoll’s fifth of the season, 14th overall.

Top-seeded Cory Clark medically forfeited his semifinal match against #13 Emilio Saavedra (Old Dominion) at 133 pounds. Last season was Clark’s first trip to the Midlands championship match, ultimately gathering the weight class title.

Session IV of the Midlands Championships is set to begin at 8 p.m. (CT) tonight. Updated team standings and complete tournament brackets are available throughout the tournament at and

SEMIFINAL RESULTS (# indicates tournament seed)
125 – #1 Thomas Gilman (IA) dec. #5 Joshua Rodriguez (North Dakota St.), 4-1
133 – #13 Emilio Saavedra (Old Dominion) medical forfeit #1 Cory Clark (IA)
149 – #1 Brandon Sorensen (IA) dec. #4 Jake Sueflohn (Nebraska), 7-4
174 – #4 Cody Walters (Ohio U.) dec. #1 Alex Meyer (IA), 7-0
184 – #1 David Taylor (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club) dec. #4 Sammy Brooks (IA), 7-2
197 – #1 Nathan Burak (IA) dec. #5 Aaron Studebaker (Nebraska), 4-2
285 – #1 Nick Gwiazdowski (N. Carolina State) maj. dec. #4 Sam Stoll (IA), 10-1

149 – Michael Kemerer (IA-unat.) pinned #12 Joey Delgado (Oregon St.), 4:46
149 – Michael Kemerer (IA-unat.) major dec. #7 Gabe Moreno (Iowa State), 20-7
149 – #4 Jake Sueflohn (Nebraska) dec. Michael Kemerer (IA-unat.), 8-7
157 – #8 Richie Lewis (Rutgers) dec. #7 Edwin Cooper, Jr. (IA), 6-5
165 – Patrick Rhoads (IA) dec. Austin Reese (Ohio U.), 5-2
165 – #2 Austin Wilson (Nebraska) dec. Patrick Rhoads (IA), 4-1
165 – Patrick Rhoads (IA) pinned Tyler Rill (Buffalo), 6:42
174 – #1 Alex Meyer (IA) dec. #12 David Kocer (SDSU), 3-2
184 – #4 Sammy Brooks (IA) dec. #6 Pete Renda (N. Carolina State), 8-7
285 – #4 Sam Stoll (IA) pinned #12 Dawson Peck (Maryland), 6:42

125 – #1 Thomas Gilman (IA) vs. #2 Ronnie Rios (Oregon St.)
149 – #1 Brandon Sorensen (IA) vs. #2 Jason Tsirtsis (Northwestern)
197 – #1 Nathan Burak (IA) vs. #14 Derek White (Nebraska)

174 – #1 Alex Meyer (IA) vs. #2 Micah Barnes (Nebraska)
184 – #4 Sammy Brooks (IA) vs. #5 Hayden Zillmer (North Dakota State)
285 – #4 Sam Stoll (IA) vs. Ross Larson (Oklahoma)

149 – Michael Kemerer (IA-unat.) vs. #5 Bryant Clagon (Rider)

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