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Iowa Wrestling: No. 1 Iowa thumps No. 18 Michigan, 27-9

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Alex Marinelli and Michael Kemerer drive us to a road win.

2019 NCAA Div I Wrestling Championships Session Three Photo by Hunter Martin/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

It wasn’t the prettiest of wins, but it was still a thumping we handed out to the Michigan Wolverines over the weekend. The 27-9 victory pushed our season record to a pluperfect 11-0 (8-0) and locked us in for a tie as co-Big Ten regular season champs. A win over Minnesota will give us the out-right crown.

IOWA 27, MICHIGAN 9

125: #1 Spencer Lee dec. over #22 Jack Medley (M), 8-1. Iowa 3-0

133: Joey Silva dec. over Paul Glynn, 7-5. Tied 3-3

141: Carter Happel dec. over Cole Mattin, 7-4. Iowa 6-3

149: #2 Pat Lugo dec. over #11 Kanen Storr, 2-0. Iowa 9-3

157: #4 Kaleb Young dec. over #8 Will Lewan, 7-3. Iowa 12-3

165 : #2 Alex Marinelli major dec. Reece Hughes, 18-6. Iowa 16-3

174: #1 Michael Kemerer tech. fall Max Maylor, 21-6. Iowa 21-3

184: Cash Wilcke dec. over #21 Jelani Embree, 3-2. Iowa 24-3

197: #4 Jacob Warner dec. over Jackson Striggow, 4-1. Iowa 27-3

285: #2 Mason Paris pinned #3 Tony Cassioppi, 4:31. Iowa 27-9

We took 8 of 10 matches and won the takedown battle, 26-5. Despite the lopsided stat sheet, we came away with two bonus point wins. Honestly, that’s what we were expected from this solid Michigan group, but we were still hoping we’d get to our offense and shift gears. However, outside of Spencer Lee, no one else was sniffing a major decision. At this point, all we can do is begrudgingly tip our hats to the Wolvies for hanging tough.

“I think we can score more points. We had two top ten wins where, ya know, one more takedown probably cracks the nut there.”

-Tom Brands

Alex Marinelli and Michael Kemerer came out with the only bonus point wins for the Hawks. Of the 26 total TD’s, The Bull had eight and Kemdawg had seven. Between the two, they outscored their opponents 38-12. That’s the type of beatdown we like to see.

MATCH NOTES:

125: Spencer Lee failed to find bonus points for the first time this season. We can second guess his game plan all we want. Should he have bailed on the tilts that have won him two NCAA titles and played the cut and release game earlier? Is there another pinning combo he can get to for those near fall points? It doesn’t matter. Medley had a fantastic game plan, so we shouldn’t take the credit away from him. Yes, I’m sure he wanted to win, but his secondary objective was to slow Lee down. And he did. There’s a reason why no one has bonused 100 of their matches in a season… it’s that hard. Medley just proved it.

133: Glynn’s loss was disappointing because he continues to dig himself an early hole. He was never down more than two points at any given time, but he’s not an offensive juggernaut. Especially against someone who can sit back with a lead and play defense. But the kid is a fighter and kept battling, nearly pulling it off in the closing moments as Silva ran out of gas.

141: This match was scoreless after one and Happel was able to open it up from there. Mattin isn’t a world beater, but Happel needed this win, especially after his rough month of January. With Murin’s health still in question, Happel needs these types of wins to boost his confidence going forward. He did it all in this match: 2 TD’s, 1 reversal, 1 escape, and a riding time point.

149: People continue to criticize Lugo’s lack of bonus points, but against someone like Kanen Storr, I’m not sure what they expect. Storr isn’t elite, at least not yet, but he’s trending in the right direction and he has definitely upped his game this year. At this point in the season, I don’t care about Lugo’s bonus points as long as he wins and that’s exactly what he keeps doing. And that was a championship-like ride he implemented in the third period.

157: When KY is on, he’s one of the most exciting wrestlers in this lineup and he was on against Will Lewan! Remember Lewan’s name because he’s going to be staple in the Michigan’s lineup for the next few years, but KY thoroughly owned him and it was a sight to see. Though our guy didn’t get the major, this is the type of win that can open the doors back up for him offensively. Pay attention to the :14 second mark on the clip below.

165: The Bull got back to the basics in this one. This was his first match back since his loss to #1 Vincenzo Joseph (PSU) and you could tell Tom Brands wanted Marinelli to make a concentrated effort to work on TD’s. Bull got body-lock happy against Joseph and it cost him. Here, he didn’t appear to go for that position, instead worked almost exclusively on the head snaps and ducks into singles and blast doubles. This looked like drill practice instead of an actual match. That’s how good The Bull looked.

174: Kemerer is big, strong, quick, and relentless. Michigan’s Maylor has had a tough go this season and Kemdawg made it worse. This was a takedown clinic as well and Kem was able to lace in a leg turk for near fall points as well to blow it open early. This is the best he’s been wrestling in his career, which is scary for all the opposition.

184: Surprisingly Cash Wilcke got the nod over Abe Assad. It was an okay match for Cash… and it very well could be his last in a Hawkeye singlet. If that’s the case, then he closes out his career with a win.

It was a boring/ scoreless first, but the 2nd period picked up the action. Cash corralled a low single leg on the edge of the mat for a TD, quickly followed by a massive mat return that got the Iowa bench energized. But from there on out, not much again. After Embree’s escape in the 3rd, Cash Money proceeded to idle his way to a win and looked incredibly sluggish in the final seconds while doing so. We’ve been saying it for years: Cash has the size, speed, and strength to make a deep run, but he’s never been able to put it all together except in small doses, such as this particular 2nd period.

197: Warner flashed some quickness early in the first period that we’ve never seen from him before. He took an attempt, snapped down, and scooted around for the takedown. It was lightening quick and something we hope we see more of! Previously, he’s always been more of a technical wrestler that likes to counter, like a big Pat Lugo. However here, this elite level speed. He knows he has it, not he needs to use it!

Warner kept the forward pressure up well into the 2nd period. He was matching Striggow backwards, which is something he typically don’t see from Jacob. He was aggressive in his ties and driving forward. But that died down by the 3rd period and he coasted to a win. Outside a late shot attempt to keep Strigs at bay, he never committed and was happy with a 4-1 win.

It was unreasonable to expect bonus points here, but another TD or two would’ve been nice to see.

285: We were all feeling pretty damn good about the evening until Mason Parris decided he had enough and sent us home with a bittersweet win. Simply put, Parris dominated Big Cass and it wasn’t close.

Parris appeared to far superior in strength and speed. Man-o-man is he fast. Cassioppi hung tough after giving up an early TD and had his snatch singles working, but he couldn’t finish and that ultimately cashed him out. Had he converted on those TD’s, like he should, this could’ve been a different result. Alas, it wasn’t and Parris bulled Cass over and took him to his back. He was done like dinner.

Cassioppi can view it like the ass beating it was or he can use it as a wakeup call to motivate him going forward. Cass has beaten this guy before and even bounced back from getting pinned by Matt Stencel (Central Mich) last year. There’s no reason to think he can’t do it again, but he needs to get back to the drawing board and make the adjustments.


Up next we host #7 Minnesota on Saturday, Feb 15, at 8:30PM in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.