March 21, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - Senior heavyweight Mike McClure won both of his matches Friday night during session four of the NCAA Wrestling Championships at the Chesapeake Energy Center to seal All-America status. McClure defeated Nick Tavanello of Ohio State by major decision, 10-2, and edged No. 11 seed Austin Marsden of Oklahoma State, 3-2, to advance to Saturday morning's consolation semifinals.
A native of Holland, Mich., McClure becomes Michigan State's first All-American heavyweight since 1993 (Don Whipp).
McClure could still finish as high as third place and is guaranteed at least a sixth-place finish; the top-eight wrestlers in each weight class earn All-America honors. He will face fifth-seeded Bobby Telford of Iowa in the consolation semifinals on Saturday, which begin at 11 a.m. ET.
A No. 7 seed, McClure cruised past Tavanello with a 10-2 major decision in the consolation fourth round. He scored a takedown just over 30 seconds into the match and rode Tavanello the rest of the period. In the second, McClure quickly escaped and added another takedown to go up 5-0 before Tavanello finally escaped to get on the board. It was more of the same in the third, as McClure notched two more takedowns and had more than four minutes of riding time to earn the eight-point victory.
The win over Tavanello assured McClure of All-America accolades.
It was a much tighter match against Marsden, but McClure came through with a clutch double-leg takedown, the only takedown of the match, to break a 1-1 tie with 1:30 remaining in the third period. Although Marsden escaped 20 seconds later to cut the lead to 3-2, McClure held him off the rest of the match to secure the win.
Earlier in the day during session three, McClure lost in the quarterfinals to No. 2 seed Nick Gwiazdowski of North Carolina State, 4-1; Gwiazdowski advanced to the finals and will wrestle No. 1 seed Tony Nelson of Minnesota for the national title on Saturday night.
All of the matches at the NCAA Championships are being streamed live on WatchESPN.com.