Hawkeye Fan Shop — A Black & Gold Store | 24 Hawkeyes to Watch 2016-17 | Hawk Talk Monthly — March 2017 | 24 Hawkeyes to Watch: Sammy Brooks | Wrestling Season Ticket Wait List | 2017 NCAA Wrestling Central | Photo Gallery | Session I Brackets
ST. LOUIS — Three Hawkeyes scored bonus points and another pulled off an overtime upset to lead the University of Iowa wrestling team through the opening session of the 2017 NCAA Wrestling Championships on Thursday at the Scottrade Center.
Redshirt freshman Cash Wilcke scored a takedown 12 seconds into the first sudden-victory period to defeat No. 13 Tom Sleigh of Bucknell, 5-3, and advance to Thursday night’s second round. Wilcke, who is unseeded and was a late addition to the 197-pound tournament field, earned his first win of the season against a ranked opponent.
He was the ninth Hawkeye to take the mat in Session I, and the seventh to move on to the next round of the championship bracket.
Senior Thomas Gilman and redshirt freshman Michael Kemerer both won by major decision, and junior Brandon Sorensen won by fall in 2:11.
“Bonus points are big,” said UI head coach Tom Brands. “Not just in the early rounds when you expect it, but anytime. When you can get them, you get them. Get them any time and get them all the time. If you can get a pin, you get a pin. When you have got clamps on a guy, you put him away.”
Gilman, the top seed at 125, scored four takedowns in the first period and three in the third to win by 19-6 major decision.
“I wanted to rack up takedowns in that first period and, if not, make him work,” Gilman said. “If I’m getting to my offense I’m usually scoring, but if I’m not scoring I’m making the guy work. If it’s close in the first period it can open up later in the match because I’m making him work.”
Sorensen, the No. 5 seed at 149, led 8-1 before returning Matthew Zovistoski to his back and recording a fall in 2:11.
“I felt good,” Sorensen said. “My feet are moving. My hands are moving. That’s the big thing. It leads to fakes and getting guys off balance and me getting to my shots.”
Kemerer scored seven points in the final period and added 4:18 of riding time to win his NCAA tournament debut, 14-3. He is joined in round two by seniors Sammy Brooks and Alex Meyer. Meyer was a 6-1 winner at 174 and Brooks used two third-period takedowns to ensure a 7-3 win at 184.
Senior Topher Carton and redshirt freshman Joey Gunther also made their NCAA tournament debuts. Carton won his 141-pound pigtail match 4-0 before falling in the first round, 13-4. Gunther was bounced to the back side of the bracket with a 12-3 loss at 165.
Iowa is tied for fourth place in the team standing with 12 points. Penn State (16), Oklahoma State (15), and Ohio State (14) make up the top three.
The tournament continues Thursday at 6 p.m. (CT). The seven Hawkeyes on the top side of the bracket will compete prior to the wrestle-backs. ESPN and ESPN3 are providing television and online coverage of Session II.
IOWA’S PIGTAIL MATCH
141 – Topher Carton (Iowa) dec. Josh Heil (Campbell), 4-0
IOWA’S FIRST ROUND NCAA MATCHUPS (# indicates tournament seed)
125 – #1 Thomas Gilman (Iowa) major dec. Brent Fleetwood (Central Michigan), 19-6
133 – #4 Cory Clark (Iowa) dec. Connor Schram (Stanford), 4-0
141 – # 6 George DiCamillo (UVA) major dec. Topher Carton (Iowa), 13-4
149 – #5 Brandon Sorensen (Iowa) pinned Matthew Zovistoski (Appalachian State), 2:11
157 – #2 Michael Kemerer (Iowa) major dec. Jake Danishek (IND), 14-3
165 – #13 Brandon Womack (Cornell) major dec. Joey Gunther (Iowa), 12-3
174 – #11 Alex Meyer (Iowa) dec. Austin Dewey (Boise State), 6-1
184 – #3 Sammy Brooks (Iowa) dec. Nicholas Gravina (Rutgers), 7-3
197 – Cash Wilcke (Iowa) dec. #13 Tom Sleigh (Bucknell), 3-2 SV1
IOWA’S SECOND ROUND NCAA MATCHUPS
125 – #1 Thomas Gilman (Iowa) vs. #16 Nathan Kraisser (Campbell)
133 – #4 Cory Clark (Iowa) vs. Pat D’Arcy (Princeton)
149 – #5 Brandon Sorensen (Iowa) vs. Andrew Crone (Wisconsin)
157 – #2 Michael Kemerer (Iowa) vs. Chase Delande (Edinboro)
174 – #11 Alex Meyer (Iowa) vs. #6 Ryan Preisch (Lehigh)
184 – #3 Sammy Brooks (Iowa) vs. # 14 Dakota Geer (Edinboro)
197 – Cash Wilcke (Iowa) vs. # 4 Jared Haught (Virginia Tech)
SECOND ROUND CONSLAITION MATCHUPS
141 – Topher Carton vs. Cole Martin (WISC)
165 – Joey Gunther vs. Lorenzo De La Riva (CSUB)