photo courtesy of Richard Immel
We must be approaching the start of the college season when wrestle-off results start to roll in, and that is what happened Thursday night. And not just any wrestler-off’s, but one held by the second-place team from the 2018 NCAA Championships, the Ohio State Buckeyes. Though the Buckeyes have plenty of talent returning and looked poised for another team trophy run, they still have questions marks like most teams in the nation in mid-October. Some of those questions may have gotten answered last night. Others may continue to linger throughout the season.
The biggest takeaway from the evening was the result at 149 lbs. Two-time All-American Micah Jordan has decided to move down from 157 pounds to take on junior Ke-Shawn Hayes, who put together an excellent first season in the OSU lineup, earning the fifth seed at nationals. Jordan swept the best-of-three series two matches to none. If the weight cut is not a problem, Jordan will be a national title favorite at 149.
Earlier this week TOM outlined a group of ten true freshmen that could have the most significant impact nationally in 2018-19. One of the freshmen named was Malik Heinselman, though there was some disclaimer that he was not assured of a starting spot, we just projected him in the lineup. Well, he won his match against Brakan Mead by the score of 4-3. This doesn’t guarantee that Heinselman starts for Ohio State, but it’s a step towards that being the case. As mentioned in the article, Head Coach Tom Ryan has never been shy about putting true freshman into action.
The final surprising result was at heavyweight where sophomore Gary Traub knocked off redshirt freshman Chase Singletary. Chase was a highly touted recruit and expected to hit the ground running at a 285 lb weight class that had cleared out nationally. Of course, because of familiarity between teammates, especially at 285 lbs, unexpected results can occur. Since both of these Buckeyes have used redshirts, I would look for both wrestlers to see action early with the coaching staff evaluating results against the competition.
Full results of the wrestle-offs:
125 – Malik Heinselman over Brakan Mead 4-3
133 – Luke Pletcher over Alex Felix Fall 2:52
149 match one – Micah Jordan over Ke-Shawn Hayes 2-1
149 match two – Micah Jordan over Ke-Shawn Hayes 8-2
157 – Elijah Cleary over Aaron Rehfeldt 9-0
165 – Kaleb Romero over Fritz Schierl 7-5
174 match one – Teshan Campbell over Ethan Smith 3-1SV
174 match two – Teshan Campbell over Ethan Smith 4-2
184 – Myles Martin over Gavin Hoffman 15-7
197 – Kollin Moore over Kevin Snyder 19-4
285 – Gary Traub over Chase Singletary 3-2TB