Jacks set record with four All-Americans

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — South Dakota State conquered the Blood Round Friday night at the 2024 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships to put a program-record four Jackrabbit wrestlers on the podium as All-Americans at T-Mobile Center.

Meanwhile, Tanner Sloan’s quest to return to the championship bout at 197 pounds was thwarted in a 4-1 defeat at the hands of second-seeded and undefeated Trent Hidlay of North Carolina State in the semifinal round.

The Jackrabbits posted a 3-0 record in the Blood Round, starting with a 9-3 decision by 23rd-seeded Tanner Jordan over No. 6 Troy Spratley of Oklahoma State. Wrestling for the third time this season, Spratley grabbed a 3-0 lead with an early takedown before Jordan got on the board with a reversal.

Jordan tied the match at 3-all with an escape early in the second period. The senior from St. Paris, Ohio, had plenty of gas left in the tank in the third period, notching a go-ahead takedown with about 40 seconds left in regulation and adding three back points to take the rubber match against Spratley and secure his first career All-America honor.

Later in the session, Jordan dropped a 5-2 overtime decision to Nebraska’s Caleb Smith. Jordan will wrestle for seventh place Saturday morning against fellow Big 12 wrestler Jore Volk of Wyoming.

The next two Jackrabbits to make program history in the Blood Round did so less than a minute apart. First, Bennett Berge held on for a 13-8 decision over fifth-seeded Lenny Pinto of Nebraska in the 184-pound weight class. That was followed by Cade DeVos posting a 6-3 decision over North Dakota State’s Gaven Sax at 174 pounds.

A redshirt freshman from Mantorville, Minnesota, Berge roared out of the gates with a takedown and four-point near-fall to build an early 7-0 lead. Pinto stormed back to momentarily tie the match at 8-all in the third period, but Berge escaped and sealed his All-America status down the stretch with a takedown and added another point for riding time.

In his second match of the night, Berge clicked on all cylinders to the tune of a 17-2 technical fall (5:47) against Navy’s David Key. Berge meets Minnesota’s Isaiah Salazar in the consolation semifinals on Saturday.

DeVos, who lost in the Blood Round at last year’s NCAAs, made sure history didn’t repeat itself Friday night. In a rematch from the Big 12 Conference title bout two weeks ago, DeVos was again the aggressor early in his bout with North Dakota State’s Gaven Sax, opening the scoring with a takedown. Sax pulled to within 5-3 late in the match before DeVos tacked on a point for riding time.

A senior from Altoona, Iowa, DeVos followed much of the same script to earn a berth in the consolation semifinals with a 5-3 decision over Edmond Ruth of Illinois. DeVos is matched up against Michigan’s Shane Griffith to open the Saturday placing session.

Sloan, who secured All-America status for the second consecutive year with a win by technical fall in Friday’s quarterfinals, scored the first point of his semifinal match with an escape 10 seconds into the second period. Hidlay countered with a takedown midway through the period and rode out the remainder of the period to build an advantage in riding time of more than a minute, which he parlayed into the final point of the match.

With his loss, Sloan dropped to 26-2 overall and had a 21-match winning streak snapped. He will square off against Oklahoma’s Stephen Buchanan in Saturday’s consolation semifinals.

The Jackrabbits moved into 12th place in the team standings with 43 points. Penn State remains the runaway leader with 148 points, followed by Michigan with 64.5 points and Iowa with 60 points. SDSU ranks third among Big 12 members, trailing Iowa State (tied for fourth, 59.5 points) and Oklahoma State (eighth, 55.0 points).

Saturday’s morning session begins at 10 a.m. with television coverage on ESPNU and ESPN+.

125: #23 Tanner Jordan, Sr., St. Paris, Ohio (4-2 record)
— lost to #10 Eric Barnett, Wisconsin, by fall 0:45
— def. #26 Blake West, Northern Illinois, by major dec., 6-2
— def. #9 Patrick McKee, Minnesota, by dec., 11-4
— def. #17 Brett Ungar, Cornell, by dec., 3-0
— def. #6 Troy Spratley, Oklahoma State, by dec., 9-3
— lost to #15 Caleb Smith, Nebraska, by dec., 5-2 [SV-1]
— vs. #5 Jore Volk, Wyoming

133: #18 Derrick Cardinal, So., Forest Lake, Minn. (1-2 record)
— lost to #15 Brody Teske, Iowa, by major dec., 12-4
— def. #31 Maximilian Leete, American, by dec., 8-2
— lost to #16 Nic Bouzakis, Ohio State, by dec., 14-8
Cardinal eliminated — ends season 21-11 overall

141: #29 Clay Carlson, Sr., Willmar, Minn. (0-2 record)
— lost to #4 Ryan Jack, North Carolina State, by dec., 8-3
— lost to #13 Jordan Titus, West Virginia, by dec., 5-3
Carlson eliminated — ends season 15-9 overall

149: #29 Alek Martin, So., St. Paris, Ohio (0-2 record)
— lost to #4 Caleb Henson, Virginia Tech, by tech. fall, 18-3 (4:47)
— lost to #13 Caleb Rathjen, Iowa, by injury default (2:37)
Martin eliminated — ends season 20-12 overall

157: #15 Cael Swensen, So., Plymouth, Minn. (2-2 record)
— def. #18 Vinny Zerban, Northern Colorado, by dec., 4-1
— lost to #2 Jacori Teemer, Arizona State, by dec., 4-1 [SV-1]
— def. #32 Isaac Wilcox, Ohio State, by dec., 8-5
— lost to #7 Peyten Kellar, Ohio, by dec., 1-0
Swensen eliminated — ends season 22-11 overall

174: #2 Cade DeVos, Sr., Altoona, Iowa (4-1 record)
— def. #31 Michael Wilson, Rider, by tech. fall, 15-0 (4:43)
— def. #18 Benjamin Pasiuk, Army, by dec., 10-4
— lost to #7 Lennox Wolak, Columbia, by dec., 4-2
— def. #14 Gaven Sax, North Dakota State, by dec., 6-3
— def. #3 Edmond Ruth, Illinois, by dec., 5-3
— vs. #4 Shane Griffith, Michigan

184: #9 Bennett Berge, R-Fr., Mantorville, Minn. (5-1 record)
— lost to #24 Shane Liegel, Wisconsin, by major dec., 9-1
— def. #8 Sam Wolf, Air Force, by major dec., 11-0
— def. #23 Layne Malczewski, Michigan State, by dec., 7-6
— def. #16 Nate Dugan, Princeton, by dec., 14-7
— def. #5 Lenny Pinto, Nebraska, by dec., 13-8
— def. #25 David Key, Navy, by tech. fall, 17-2 (5:47)
— vs. #2 Isaiah Salazar, Minnesota

197: #3 Tanner Sloan, Sr., Alburnett, Iowa (3-1 record)
— def. #30 Sam Mitchell, Buffalo, by fall 5:25
— def. #14 John Poznanski, Rutgers, by major dec., 14-4
— def. #6 Lou Deprez, Binghamton, by tech. fall, 16-1 (7:00)
— lost to #2 Trent Hidlay, North Carolina State, by dec., 4-1
— vs. #8 Stephen Buchanan, Oklahoma

1 Penn State – 148.5
2 Michigan – 64.5
3 Iowa – 60.0
T4 Iowa State – 59.5
T4 Arizona State – 59.5
6 Cornell – 58.5
7 Ohio State – 57.0
8 Oklahoma State – 55.0
9 Virginia Tech – 53.0
10 Nebraska – 52.0
11 North Carolina State – 48.5
12 South Dakota State – 43.0
13 Missouri – 40.0
14 Northern Iowa – 34.5
15 Lehigh – 31.0

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