By Wisconsin Sports Information
MADISON, Wis. – Six bonus point victories — including four technical falls and two major decisions — an unblemished record and Navy Classic title have earned Wisconsin’s Tyler Graff Big Ten Wrestler of the Week honors. It is Graff’s first weekly award and the No. 24 Badgers’ first honor since January, 2011.
“Tyler is having a great year right now,” head coach Barry Davis said. “He is doing all of the right things, he’s focused, he learned so much from last year.
“I think the biggest part is he is dominating more on top than before, I think that is the biggest difference,” Davis continued. “He’s not taking guys down as much and making them ride more and turn more. I think that’s making him more effective all around as an athlete.”
Ranked No. 2 at 133 lbs., Graff started the week with his eighth dual meet victory, a technical fall against American’s Esteban Gomez-Rivera (22-7, 7:00), on Thursday.
The senior then notched technical falls against Citadel’s Clarence Arrington (21-5, 3:59), Franklin and Marshall’s Robert Ruiz (23-7, 6:41) and West Virginia’s Gage Swartz (21-4, 3:41) at the Navy Classic on Saturday.
Graff continued to roll with major decisions over Mackenzie McGuire of Kent State (11-3) and No. 17 Nathan Pennesi of West Virginia (16-4) to earn the tournament title at 133 lbs., and improve his record to 13-0.
Graff’s tournament title fueled the Badgers to a first-place team finish out of 14 teams at the tournament.
Wisconsin returns to dual meet action on Saturday when it travels to Cedar Falls, Iowa, to face No. 17 Northern Iowa. The first match is scheduled for 7 p.m.