NCAA Wrestling Championships Update: Session III
March 19, 2010
OMAHA, Neb. - Defending 133-pound national champion Franklin Gomez highlighted Session III of the 2010 NCAA Wrestling Championships for Michigan State as he won his quarterfinal bout and advanced to the semifinals. Gomez, the third seed, will meet Iowa's Daniel Dennis, the No. 2 seed, tonight at 7 p.m. EDT for a spot in the national championship bout. Friday's Session IV and national semifinals will be televised live on ESPNU beginning at 7 p.m. ET.
"It's really nice to see Franklin back in the semifinals," MSU head coach Tom Minkel said. "Franklin is wrestling exceptionally well and I think he's got some good momentum and he's ready to go."
As a team, the Spartans currently stand in a tie for 15th place with 22.5 points.
Anthony Jones Jr. went 2-0 on Friday morning with two thrilling wins. Jones will next battle the fourth-seed Cyler Sanderson of Penn State tonight.
The tournament runs both David Cheza (149) and Nick Palmieri (184) came to an end Friday morning after each suffered their second losses of the Championships. Kyle Bounds (165) won his first match on Friday morning, but fell in his second match - also ending his tournament run.
In his quarterfinal matchup, Gomez took on the sixth seed Dan Mitcheff of Kent State. Gomez fought off Mitcheff's early flurry and the two went scoreless through the first period. Gomez started on top in the second period and picked up three near fall points midway through the period to take the lead. Gomez stayed on Mitcheff for the entire period, giving him a full 2:00 of riding time entering the third. In the third, Gomez started down and got a quick escape to make it 4-0. Mitcheff got a takedown in the final seconds for his first points of the bout, but it was too little to late as Gomez claimed the victory, 5-2, with riding time.
By advancing to the semifinals, Gomez became a three-time All-America as the top-eight finishers in each weight class earn All-America honors.
In his first bout Friday morning, Jones met eighth-seeded Bryce Saddoris of Navy. Jones attacked from the outset and made quick work of Saddoris, pinning him for the win less than one minute into the bout.
Jones stayed alive in the consolation bracket with a dramatic one-point win over Tejovan Edwards of Arizona State. Jones led 3-2 to start the second period but a quick reversal by Edwards gave him the lead. Jones later got an escape but Edwards regained the lead, 6-4, with a takedown. Jones began his third-period comeback with a takedown 15 seconds into the round to tie the score at six. After an escape by Edwards, Jones again took him down with just over a minute left to regain the lead, 8-7. Edwards escaped with under a minute left and with a riding-time advantage of over two minutes, he looked to be in line for the win. After a restart with under 20 seconds remaining, Jones got to Edwards for his third takedown of the period and hung on to win, 10-9.
The winner of tonight's match between Jones and Sanderson will be guaranteed a spot on the 157-pound All-America team.
"It was a hard-fought match," Jones said. "I found myself down, late, and I just knew I had to get it because I have a dream that I want to fulfill and that is to be an All-American."
Bounds also picked up a win in his first match on Friday morning - defeating Matt Kaylor of Binghamton, 5-3. The two were tied at two entering the third where Bounds started down. Bounds quickly escaped and later got a takedown for a 5-2 advantage. Kaylor got one more escape to make the final score, 5-3.
In his second dual of the session, Bounds took on Colt Sponseller, the No. 5 seed, of Ohio State. Sponseller got an escape early in the second for the first points of the match and later got a takedown for a 3-0 lead. Bounds made it 3-1 with an escape but couldn't get any closer as he suffered his second loss of the tournament.
In his consolation bout at 149 pounds, Cheza took on the fourth-seeded Kyle Ruschell of Wisconsin. Ruschell got a takedown less than one minute in to the bout and then got the fall at 1:49.
After going 1-1 on Thursday, Palmieri faced 10th-seed Mike Pucillo of Ohio State in the consolation second round. The two wrestled a scoreless first period but Pucillo took control in the second, scoring points on an escape, takedown and near fall to take a 5-0 lead. Pucillo got another takedown in the third and then added another point with riding time for the win.
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