Nelson to Defend Title in Heavyweight Championship

With 68 points, Minnesota sits third headed into the final day of competition

Minnesota’s Tony Nelson has done it again, advancing to the NCAA Championship final for the second year in a row in the heavyweight bracket. With help from a nicely-executed third-period takedown, Nelson defeated Oklahoma State’s Alen Gelogaev by a score of 5-4 to advance.

Minnesota Gophers“Coming in as the defending champ; all those guys against you, they wrestle different.” Nelson said at the post-match press conference. “They want to keep things close and they want to be the guy to beat you. Going out there, to do this again and be back in the finals is just fun. I’m excited to see what I can do tomorrow night.”

The championship match will be a repeat of the 2013 Big Ten title match as Mike McMullan (Northwestern) upset the No. 1 seeded Dom Bradley (Missouri) in the other semifinal bout. Nelson and McMullan will meet tomorrow night in a battle for the crown.

“I wrestled him in the Big 10 finals and wrestled him last year. I won’t change things up, just do the things I do and try and go out there and win.”

The Golden Gophers still sit in third place, totaling 86 team points. Sitting eight points ahead is Oklahoma State with 94. Penn State has kept its commanding lead with 114.5 team points. Behind Minnesota is Iowa in fourth with 68 points and Cornell in fifth with 51.

Logan Storley narrowly missed out on his chance up on the platform, falling in the quarterfinals to Matt Brown. Storley managed to contain Brown, who has been dominating all tournament, to a tight score but couldn’t overcome a deficit to fall 3-2. He will move to the consolation bracket and look for a third-place finish.

Chris Dardanes, Dylan Ness, and Scott Schiller went 2-0 in the evening session to also remain in contention for a third-place finish. Dardanes ran through Central Michigan’s Scotti Sentes (SV; 11-9) and Oklahoma’s Cody Brewer (D; 10-5). Ness began the fourth session with a 5-3 victory over Jake Sueflohn of Nebraska and finished with a 12-5 match over Ivan Lopouchanski of Purdue. Schiller continued his reign at 197 lbs., taking down opponents he had met earlier in the season. First, he notched a 3-1 victory over Mario Gonzalez (Illinois) and then followed with a 5-2 topping of Blake Rosholt (Oklahoma State).

David Thorn, Nick Dardanes, and Cody Yohn all notched victories in their first bout of the session to earn All-American status, but fell in the second go around. They still remain in the competition and will compete in the seventh-place match of their respective brackets tomorrow morning.

At 184 lbs., Kevin Steinhaus missed out on his third All-American honor when he was knocked out of the competition at the hands of Maryland’s Jimmy Sheptock. Steinhaus slipped up on a shot and Sheptock caught him for the sudden victory.

Tomorrow mornings consolation (3rd, 5th and 7th place) matches will begin at 10 a.m. and will be broadcasted on ESPNU and ESPN3. The championship matches will be live on ESPN starting at 7 p.m.

Friday Session 4 Results:

Championship Semifinals
174 #2 Mathew Brown (Penn State) dec. #6 Logan Storley (Minnesota) 3-2
285 #2 Anthony Nelson (Minnesota) dec. #3 Alan Gelogaev (Oklahoma St.) 5-4

Consolation Round 4
125 David Thorn (Minnesota) dec. Dominic Parisi (Appalachian S.) 9-2
133 #5 Chris Dardanes (Minnesota) dec. #10 Scotti Sentes (Central Michigan) 11-9
141 #8 Nick Dardanes (Minnesota) dec. #3 Michael Mangrum (Oregon St.) 5-3 tb
149 #6 Dylan Ness (Minnesota) dec. #9 Jake Sueflohn (Nebraska) 5-3
165 #11 Cody Yohn (Minnesota) dec. John Staudenmayer (North Carolina) 5-3
184 #7 Jimmy Sheptock (Maryland) dec. #5 Kevin Steinhaus (Minnesota) 6-4
197 #10 Scott Schiller (Minnesota) dec. Mario Gonzalez (Illinois) 3-1

Consolation Round 5
125 #6 Jarrod Garnett (Virginia Tech) fall David Thorn (Minnesota) 3:54
133 #5 Chris Dardanes (Minnesota) vs #8 Cody Brewer (Oklahoma) 10-5
141 #11 Michael Nevinger (Cornell) dec. #8 Nick Dardanes (Minnesota) 6-2
149 #6 Dylan Ness (Minnesota) dec. Ivan Lopouchanski (Purdue) 12-5
165 #7 Conrad Polz (Illinois) dec. #11 Cody Yohn (Minnesota) 2-1 tb1
197 #10 Scott Schiller (Minnesota) dec. #11 Blake Rosholt (Oklahoma St.) 5-2

Saturday Match-ups:

1st Place
285 #2 Anthony Nelson (Minnesota) vs #5 Michael McMullan (Northwestern)

Consolation Semifinals
133 #5 Chris Dardanes (Minnesota) vs #3 Tyler Graff (Wisconsin)
149 #6 Dylan Ness (Minnesota) vs Drake Houdashelt (Missouri)
174 #6 Logan Storley (Minnesota) vs #8 Nick Heflin (Ohio St.)
197 #10 Scott Schiller (Minnesota) vs #5 Taylor Meeks (Oregon St.)

7th Place
125 David Thorn (Minnesota) vs #12 Tyler Cox (Wyoming)
141 #8 Nick Dardanes (Minnesota) vs Zach Neibert (Virginia Tech)
165 #11 Cody Yohn (Minnesota) vs #8 Nicholas Sulzer (Virginia)

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