PISCATAWAY, N.J – Heavyweight Gable Steveson took home his first career Big Ten Championship as the Gophers closed out the 2020 Big Ten Championships in eighth place with 63.5 team points.
Steveson’s conference title is the Gophers first since 133-pound Chris Dardanes won in 2015. Among heavyweights, the drought dates back to Tony Nelson in 2014.
Steveson improves to 15-0 this season and 50-2 in his young career. Of all Gopher wrestlers with at least 50 career victories, Steveson has the best winning percentage (.962) with Larry Zilverberg and Brock Lesar tied in second place (0.948).
Including Steveson, the Gophers placed five on the podium.
Devin Skatzka earned the fifth spot on the podium with an 8-3 decision over Nebraska’s Mikey Labriola, his third straight decision over Labriola in less than a month. The two foes have met nine times now with Skatzka owning the series lead with five hand-raises.
At 149-pounds Brayton Lee finished fourth in his first varsity season after dropping a 3-0 decision to Colin Purinton in his final bout. Lee won three matches on the weekend as he outscored his opponents 29-15.
Mitch McKee placed sixth at 141-pounds after medically forfeiting his bouts on Sunday while Hunter Ritter took home eighth place
The Gophers will close out the season right across the river at US Bank Stadium with the NCAA Championships lasting from March 19-21. The event is expected to demolish previous NCAA wrestling attendance records and will house an improved student-athlete experience featuring more practice and personal space.
Full Gopher Results (Numbers listed are seeds)
125-pound No.3 Patrick Mckee (DNP)
Round of 16: No.14 Brandon Meredith (PSU) dec. (3-2) No.3 Patrick McKee
Cons. of 8 #1: No.11 Malik Heinselman (OSU) fall (2:07) No.3 Patrick McKee
133-pound No.11 Boo Dryden (DNP)
Round of 16: No.6 Ridge Lovett (NEB) fall (4:51) No.11 Boo Dryden
Cons. of 8 #1: No.11 Boo Dryden dec. (1-0) over No.14 Jordan Decatur (OSU)
Cons. of 8 #2: No.4 Travis Piotrowski (ILL) dec. (7-1) over No.11 Boo Dryden
141-pound No.6 Mitchell McKee (Sixth)
Round of 16: No.6 Mitchell McKee dec. (4-0) over No.11 Jojo Aragona (RUT)
Quarterfinals: No.6 Mitchell McKee dec. (3-1) over No.3 Max Murin (IOWA)
Semifinals: No.2 Luke Pletcher (OSU) major dec. (11-3) No.6 Mitchell McKee
149-pound No.3 Brayton Lee (Fourth)
Round of 16: No.3 Brayton Lee tech. fall (21-6) No.14 Ryan Garlitz (UMD)
Quarterfinals: No.3 Brayton Lee by inj. default (3:21) over No.11 Gerard Angelo (RUT)
Semifinals: No.2 Pat Lugo (IOWA) dec. (4-1) No.3 Brayton Lee
Cons. Semifinals: No.3 Brayton Lee SV1 (3-1) No.7 Griffin Parriott
Third Place Match: No.7 Collin Purinton (NEB) dec. (3-0) No.3 Brayton Lee
157-pound No.5 Ryan Thomas (DNP)
Round of 16: No.5 Ryan Thomas dec. (12-6) No.12 Garrett Model
Quarterfinals: No.4 Will Lewan (MICH) dec (3-1) No.5 Ryan Thomas
Cons. of 8 #2: No.6 Jake Tucker (MSU) major dec. (8-0) No.5 Ryan Thomas
165-pound No.8 Bailee O’Reilly (Ninth)
Round of 16: No.9 Drew Hughes (MSU) fall (4:43) No.8 Bailee O’Reilly
Cons. of 8 #2: No.7 Danny Braunagel dec. (4-3) No.8 Bailee O’Reilly
Challenge Bracket Semifinals: No.8 Bailee O’Reilly dec. (3-2) over No.11 Brett Donner
Ninth Place Match: No.8 Bailee O’Reilly fall (1:01) Diego Lemley (IND)
174-pound No.4 Devin Skatzka (Fifth)
Round of 16: No.4 Devin Skatzka tech. fall (17-2) over No.13 Eric Yang (NU)
Quarterfinals: No.4 Devin Skatzka dec. (6-2) over No.5 Mikey Labriola (NEB)
Semifinals: No.1 Michael Kemerer (IOWA) major dec. (22-9) No.4 Devin Skatzka
Cons. Semifinals: No.6 Kaleb Romero (OSU) dec. (6-5) over No.4 Devin Skatzka
Fifth Place match: No.4 Devin Skatzka dec. (8-3) over No.5 Mikey Labriola (NEB)
184-pound No.8 Owen Webster (Eleventh)
Round of 16: No.8 Owen Webster dec. (9-3) over No.9 Johnny Sebastian (WIS)
Quarterfinals: No.1 Aaron Brooks (PSU) major dec. (15-4) over No.8 Owen Webster
Cons. of 8 #2: No.10 Jelani Embree dec. (7-1) over No.8 Owen Webster
Challenge Bracket Round One: No.8 Owen Webster major dec. (9-0) over No.14 Kyle Jasneski (UMD)
Challenge Bracket Semifinals: No.7 Zac Braunagel dec. (6-4) over No.8 Owen Webster
Eleventh Place Match: No.8 Owen Webster dec. (9-4) over No.13 Jake Hinz (IND)
197-pound No.10 Hunter Ritter (Eighth)
Round of 16: No.10 Hunter Ritter inj. default (0:01) No.7 Jordan Pagano
Quarterfinals: No.2 Eric Schultz fall (2:52) No.10 Hunter Ritter
Cons. of 8 #2: No.10 Hunter Ritter major dec. (11-2) over No.9 Jaron Smith (UMD)
Cons. of 4: No.3 Jacob Warner (Iowa) dec. (6-1) over No.10 Hunter Ritter
Seventh Place Match: No.8 Jackson Striggow (MICH) dec. (9-2) over No.10 Hunter Ritter
Heavyweight No.2 Gable Steveson (Champion)
Quarterfinals: No.2 Gable Steveson fall (1:29) No.10 Alex Espositio
Semifinals: No.2 Gable Steveson dec. (9-4) over No.3 Tony Cassioppi (Iowa)
Finals: No.2 Gable Steveson dec. (8-6) over No.1 Mason Parris (MICH)