SDSU: Pairings released for NCAA Championships

INDIANAPOLIS — Tanner Sloan earned the No. 7 seed at 197 pounds to lead a program-record eight South Dakota State wrestlers who will compete next week at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

A senior from Alburnett, Iowa, Sloan enters the tournament with a 23-2 overall record and is slated to meet No. 26 Gavin Hoffman of Ohio State in the opening round on March 16 at BOK Center. Sloan, who was runner-up in his weight class at last weekend’s Big 12 Wrestling Championship, is a four-time NCAA qualifier with an 82-19 career record.

Also making his fourth trip to nationals is heavyweight A.J. Nevills, who is seeded 14th to set up a first-round matchup against Duke’s Jonah Niesenbaum. A senior from Clovis, California, Nevills made his first two NCAA appearances while wrestling at Fresno State and earned his second consecutive berth with the Jackrabbits after a sixth-place finish at the Big 12 Championship while compiling a 19-6 record.

Both 141-pounder Clay Carlson and 174-pounder Cade DeVos will be making their third consecutive trips to nationals. An All-American in 2021, Carlson is seeded 11th and is set to face No. 22 Malyke Hines of Lehigh in the opening round. A senior from Willmar, Minnesota, Carlson holds a 22-8 record this season after finishing third at the Big 12 Championship and carries a 94-39 career mark into the tournament.

NCAA DI National Championships brackets

DeVos also recorded a third-place finish at last week’s Big 12 Championship and brings a 25-7 record into the NCAA Championships as the No. 13 seed. A junior from Altoona, Iowa, DeVos is slated to face No. 20 Alex Cramer of Central Michigan in his first match.

Earning his second NCAA berth at 165 pounds is junior Tanner Cook, who is seeded 22nd with a 17-7 record. The Ilion, New York native, who placed eighth at the Big 12 Championship, will face returning All-American Cameron Amine of Michigan in the opening round.

Three Jackrabbits will be making their first trip to nationals, including redshirt freshman 157-pounder Cael Swensen, who is seeded 20th with a 21-8 mark after placing fifth at the conference level. The Plymouth, Minnesota native will face No. 13 Trevor Chumbley in a rematch of their fifth-place bout at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational this past December in which Chumbley won a 6-2 decision.

Senior Cade King and junior Tanner Jordan earned at-large selections and are seeded 24th and 32nd, respectively, at 184 and 125 pounds. A native of Waseca, Minnesota, King brings a 19-9 record into his matchup against Minnesota’s Isaiah Salazar, who is seeded ninth.

Jordan, from St. Paris, Ohio, will wrestle No. 33 Tucker Owens of Air Force in a pigtail match for the right to face top-seeded and defending national champion Spencer Lee of Iowa. Jordan has compiled a 17-14 record so far this season, which included a pin of Owens in dual action in late January.

The NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships run March 16-18, with television coverage on the ESPN family of networks throughout the tournament.

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