ST. LOUIS – Two of four Ohio State semifinalist wrestlers have advanced to the finals on Saturday at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. As a team, the Buckeyes sit tied for third place with 81.5 points, trailing Penn State at 121 and Oklahoma State at 86.
The two finalists – redshirt junior 174-pounder Bo Jordan, and junior Kyle Snyder – have very different experiences in the NCAA finals, as Snyder will be appearing in his third while Jordan will make his first NCAA championship final appearance.
Top-seeded 133-pounder redshirt junior Nathan Tomasello was upset by Iowa’s Cory Clark in the semifinals, while redshirt freshman Kollin Moore lost in the 197-pound division to Minnesota’s Brett Pfarr.
Jordan will face Penn State’s Mark Hall, who he defeated to capture his first Big Ten title on March 5. Jordan employed some late-match acrobatics against Cornell’s Brian Realbuto — who is the only wrestler to hand Jordan a loss this season — to ensure his 11-7 victory in the semifinals.
Snyder suffered a rib injury in his quarterfinal matchup against Minnesota’s Michael Kroells, but it didn’t seem to show in his semifinal match against Duke’s Jacob Kasper, as Snyder won 19-6.
Like Jordan, Snyder will face a familiar foe in the finals in Wisconsin’s Connor Medbery. Snyder beat Medbery to win the Big Ten championship in the heavyweight division, but won only 7-5. Medbery earned a last-second takedown against Snyder in their last bout.
Tomasello and Moore each defeated their opponents to win Big Ten titles, but now can do no better than third in their respective divisions.
In addition to Tomasello, two other Buckeyes were defeated in the championship bracket and will have to contribute to the team’s point total from the consolation bracket. The 2016 national champion at 174 pounds and sophomore Myles Martin was knocked out of championship contention at 184 pounds, and No. 4 149-pounder and redshirt sophomore Micah Jordan also suffered an upset loss in the second round of the championship bracket.
Micah Jordan was upset by Iowa’s No. 5 Brandon Sorensen, whom he defeated at the Big Ten championships. Martin lost 14-9 to Illinois’ No. 11 Emery Parker. Martin defeated Parker 18-7 when the teams met on Jan. 15.
Both have will take on semifinalists from their weight classes Saturday, as Micah Jordan will face off against Northern Illinois’ Max Thomsen and Martin will take on Iowa’s Sammy Brooks, as both look to compete for third place.
Brooks defeated Martin to win the Big Ten title at 184 pounds.
Three other Buckeyes have been eliminated from competition after losing in the consolation bracket. Redshirt freshman Jose Rodriguez went 1-2 at 125 pounds, freshman 12th-ranked Luke Pletcher went 2-2 and redshirt sophomore Cody Burcher was winless in St. Louis.