Three Jackrabbits earn places at Midlands, Pack in the finals

EVANSTON, Ill. — Cody Pack qualified for the finals of the 157-pound weight class and two other South Dakota State wrestlers advanced to placing matches during competition Wednesday at the 53rd Ken Kraft Midlands Championships.

Pack, a senior from Quincy, California, reached the championship match at Midlands for the second year in a row with a 6-2 decision over fourth-seeded John Boyle of American University during the afternoon session. The top-seeded Pack will meet second-seeded Thomas Gantt of North Carolina State in tonight’s title bout. The championship session begins at 8 p.m. and will be televised on the Big Ten Network.

SDSU JackrabbitsAlso advancing to placing matches on Wednesday were 174-pounder David Kocer and Nate Rotert at 197 pounds. Kocer will wrestle for fifth place in the night session after winning two of three afternoon matches. The sophomore from Wagner downed seventh-seeded Taylor Lujan of Northern Iowa, 5-4, then blanked Trace Engelkes from Northern Illinois, 9-0. Kocer later dropped a 3-2 decision to top-seeded Alex Meyer of Iowa in the consolation semifinals.

Kocer will meet ninth-seeded Phil Bakuckas of Rutgers (N.J.) in the fifth-place match.

Rotert, seeded third, opened the day with a pin of eighth-seeded Michael Boykin of North Carolina State, but was later upended by fourth-seeded Brett Harner of Princeton (N.J.), 10-4. In the seventh-place match against No. 13 Ryan Wolfe of Rider (N.J.), Rotert gave up an early takedown, but came back to notch a 7-3 decision.

Two other Jackrabbits had their tournament runs end at the hands of wrestlers from Old Dominion (Va.) in their first action of the day during Wednesday’s afternoon session. At 125 pounds, Ben Gillette suffered a loss by technical fall to 11th-seeded Brandon Jeske, while 141-pounder Seth Gross dropped a narrow 4-3 decision to top-seeded Chris Mecate.

Heading into the final session, the Jackrabbits are in 10th place out of 43 teams with 57 points. Iowa leads the team standings with 136 points, followed by fellow Big Ten Conference opponents Nebraska (130) and Rutgers (N.J.) (108).

Midlands Championships Brackets/Results

Following are the Jackrabbits’ complete results from the Ken Kraft Midlands Championships, along with upcoming matches:

125: Ben Gillette, Sr., Redfield (2-2 record)
• lost to No. 2 Ronnie Bresser (Oregon State), by major dec., 14-6
• dec. Shakur Laney (Ohio), 13-7
• dec. Nathan Boston (Iowa State), 6-4 (SV-1)
• lost to No. 11 Brandon Jeske (Old Dominion), by tech. fall, 16-0
Gillette eliminated

133: Brance Simms, Sr., Gilmore City, Iowa [seeded 12th] (2-2 record)
• dec. Joel Shump (Ohio), 8-2
• lost to No. 5 Mason Beckman (Lehigh), by major dec., 10-2
• dec. Austin Eicher (Northern Illinois), 5-2
• lost to No. 4 Eric Montoya (Nebraska), by major dec. 10-2
Simms eliminated

141: Seth Gross, R-Fr., Apple Valley, Minn. [seeded 15th] (4-2 record)
• dec. Jack Mutchnik (American), 6-4
• dec. Jimmy Morris (Rider), 8-5
• lost to No. 2 Kevin Jack (North Carolina State), by major dec., 10-2
• dec. Noah Teaney (Oklahoma), 7-2
• dec. Topher Carton (Iowa), 7-2
• lost to No. 1 Chris Mecate (Old Dominion), by dec., 4-3
Gross eliminated

149: Alex Kocer, Jr., Wagner [seeded 10th] (3-2 record)
• major dec. Danny Reed (Columbia), 11-0
• dec. Sam Melikian (North Carolina State), 6-4
• lost to No. 7 Gabe Moreno (Iowa State), by fall, 4:23
• dec. No. 13 Shyheim Brown (Maryland), 2-1
• lost to No. 15 Max Thomsen (unattached-Northern Iowa), by dec., 6-3
Alex Kocer eliminated

157: Cody Pack, Sr., Quincy, Calif. [seeded first]
• tech. fall Devin Geoghegan (Old Dominion), 19-4
• major dec. Shayne Tucker (Oklahoma), 16-2
• def. No. 9 Markus Scheidel (Columbia), by fall 5:52
• dec. No. 4 John Boyle (American), 6-2
• vs. No. 2 Thomas Gantt (North Carolina State)

157: Logan Peterson, R-Fr., Lake Lillian, Minn. (1-2 record)
• lost to No. 7 Edwin Cooper, Jr. (Iowa), by dec., 16-4
• dec. Nate Higgins (Southern Illinois-Edwardsville), 13-10
• lost to Logan Breitenbach (Iowa State), by dec., 6-3
Peterson eliminated

165: Luke Zilverberg, So., Belle Plaine, Minn. [seeded 11th] (2-2 record)
• dec. Arsen Ashughyan (Ohio), 6-5
• lost to No. 6 Clark Glass (Oklahoma), by dec., 7-5
• dec. Shaun’Qae McMurtry (Northern Illinois), 6-5
• lost to Austin Reese (Ohio), by dec., 3-1
Zilverberg eliminated

165: Joe Brewster, Sr., Park Ridge, Ill. [seeded 12th] (1-2 record)
• lost to Patrick Rhoads (Iowa), by dec., 3-2
• def. Nolan Kistler (California Baptist), by injury default
• lost to No. 2 Austin Wilson (Nebraska), by dec., 5-1
Brewster eliminated

174: David Kocer, So., Wagner [seeded 12th]
• dec. Blake Thompson (North Dakota State), 5-0
• lost to No. 5 Lelund Weatherspoon (Iowa State), by dec., 4-1
• dec. Jacob Davis (Eastern Michigan), 7-1
• dec. Tyler Chay (Oregon State), 4-2
• dec. No. 7 Taylor Lujan (unattached-Northern Iowa), 5-4
• major dec. Trace Engelkes (Northern Illinois), 9-0
• lost to No. 1 Alex Meyer (Iowa) by dec., 3-2
• vs. Phil Bakuckas (Rutgers)

184: Brady Ayers, Jr., Waterville, Minn. (2-2 record)
• dec. Lance Dixon (Oklahoma), 3-2
• dec. Michael Fetchet (Columbia), 3-1
• lost to No. 1 David Taylor (Penn State), by tech. fall, 15-0
• lost to Michale Fagg-Daves (Rider), by dec., 4-3
Ayers eliminated

184: Ben Schwery, Jr., Underwood, Iowa (2-2 record)
• dec. Danny Hicks (Illinois), 3-1
• lost to No. 4 Sammy Brooks (Iowa), by dec., 9-4
• dec. Cash Wilcke (unattached-Iowa), 3-0
• lost to Corey Griego (Oregon State), by dec., 6-1
Schwery eliminated

184: Josh Casperson, R-Fr., Beresford (0-2 record)
• lost to Abram Ayala (Princeton), by fall, 3:26
• lost to Cash Wilcke (unattached-Iowa), by dec. 2-1
Casperson eliminated

197: Nate Rotert, So., Spearfish [seeded third] (5-2 record)
• dec. Steven Holloway (unattached-Iowa), 11-9
• lost to No. 14 Derek White (Nebraska), by dec., 5-3
• major dec. Drake Stein (Purdue), 17-6
• dec. No. 11 Cody Crawford (Oregon State), 9-2
• def. No. 8 Michael Boykin (North Carolina State), by fall 2:39
• lost to No. 4 Brett Harner (Princeton), by dec., 10-4
• dec. No. 13 Ryan Wolfe (Rider), 7-3
Rotert finishes in Seventh Place

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