Our #1 ranked Iowa Hawkeyes ripped through the competition yesterday going 2-0 on the day after throttling CMU and Lehigh, 44-0 and 28-7, respectively. We won 18 of 20 matches including 9 by the bonus point variety: 1 fall, 3 techs, 2 majors, 1 DQ, and 1 injury default.
That’s a lot of extra points we threw out there that ran the score up, especially against Central Michigan. Lehigh proved to be a bit more of challenge, but we still looked damn impressive taking 8 of the 10 matches. But the SV1 loss by Max Murin and Kaleb Young getting tuned up for a major definitely put a blemish on the evening. FWIW- both of these guys will be tested again today.
So let’s take a very quick look at #5 NC State - our final opponent for the 2021 Journeyman Collegiate Duals.
#5 NC State (5-0)
As you can identify the number designation in front of their name, they are ranked 5th in the latest NWCA Coaches poll, but they are as high as #2 in Wrestlestat. These guys are the real deal and they’re going to bring it this evening with their star-studded lineup.
They boast all 10 wrestlers inside the top 25, including 4 within the top 10: #5 Jakob Camacho (125), #3 Tariq Wilson (149), Hayden Hidlay (174), and Trent Hidlay (184).
But make no mistake about it, all ten are fully capable of winning their matches and they fully expect to do just that. Wilson, and the Hidlay brothers are returning AA’s and will be favored at their weights (unless Michael Kemerer gets the surprising nod tonight). With these three expected wins, mix in a couple toss up matches and this could be a dog fight coming down to heavyweight.
125: #1 Spencer Lee vs #5 Jakob Camacho
Lee got the nod last night and he didn’t disappoint! His 1st match was a 2nd period tech fall that was reminiscent of vintage Lee. The 2nd go around against his lanky Lehigh opponent will have some doubting whether or not he’s truly ready to go because he failed to find near fall points, let alone tech his guy.
But let me be very clear - every, EVERYONE knows what Lee is doing and EVERYONE is trying to stop it. The playbook is wide open on him and EVERYONE will give him their best shot. Jaret Lane presented an interested challenge as Lee has rarely faced an someone with that length. I fully expect our guy to learn from that, work the tilt a bit higher and tighter so Lane (or a build like him) can’t post his arm back in the future. This was a learning moment - and yes - even a 3x NCAA champ can still learn.
Camacho will be an immediate upgrade in terms of competition. We need Lee to go, because if Ybarra takes the mat tonight, this dual will be much closer than it has any right to be.
149: #8 Max Murin vs #3 Tariq Wilson
Max’s ranking will inevitably drop following his OT loss last night, as it should. However, Mr. Wilson presents an opportunity to remedy that blunder and salvage this weekend. It’ll be an uphill battle for sure and Wilson is the type of guy that gives Murin fits: length, strength, and pure athleticism. The NC State product is a 2x AA (3rd twice), but both of those previous runs were at 141. If Max has one thing going for him it’s his size and he needs to use it tonight.
Heavy hands, clubs, and solid shot attempts. He has to square up and not let Wilson find the angles or create scrambles. This is match Mad Max can win, but he needs to find confidence - an early TD can help boost that.
184: Abe Assad vs #3 Trent Hidlay
If we thought Max’s match was an uphill battle, then this is likely a mountain for Assad to climb. Hidlay is a returning finalist who fell to #1 Aaron Brooks, 3-2, back in March. Hidlay is big and strong, very strong.
After his two matches back Assad appears to have some swagger back, but he needs to wrestle smart tonight and keep this thing close going into the 3rd where anything is possible. Hidlay likes to put up points and look for big moves, but he’s not considered a proflic pinner by any means. Perhaps another route to victory for Assad is to look for a big move and hit it, try to break it open early, hold on late.
Either way, a solid showing here for our guy will likely settle the 184lbs debate between him and Myles Wilson.
197: #7 Jacob Warner vs #15 Isaac Trumble
Warner looked great last night. He wrestled proactive, but smart - and that’s the best kind of Warner. He clubbed JT Davis and Aaron Bolo into oblivion and flashed some athleticism while doing it. I say this time and time again, but when we see Warner flicking his hands and shuffling his feet (especially in the 3rd period) we know he’s zero’d in and ready to go.
Trumble has been on a warpath this year as he’s already built his record to an impressive 12-1, with his lone loss coming to #12 Louie Deprez (Binghamton)... though he has also beaten #4 Rocky Elam. The talent is there for him to make a serious run in March, so Warner needs to be dialed in tonight and hold of a charging up and comer.
On paper we’re heavily favored at 133, 141, 165, and 285. We need bonus points out of these matches. 149, 174, and possibly 184 could go sidewise on us quick, so we need to be prepared to upend those results and add the big points where we can.
I fully expect DeSanto and Eierman to go big and look for the tech fall and pin, respectively. Likewise, Marinelli and Big Cass will also be looking for bonus points. Finding extra momentum in these matches will make this a tough route for NC State.
So there we have it: bonus points are my key to victory tonight.
125lbs: #1 Spencer Lee vs #5 Jakob Camacho
133lbs: #3 Austin DeSanto vs #17 Kai Orine
141lbs: #2 Jaydin Eierman vs #16 Ryan Jack
149lbs: #8 Max Murin // Cobe Siebrecht vs #3 Tariq Wilson
157lbs: #8 Kaleb Young vs #23 Ed Scott
165lbs: #1 Alex Marinelli vs #18 Thomas Bullard
174lbs: Nelson Brands vs #5 Hayden Hidlay
184lbs: #28 Myles Wilson // Abe Assad vs Trent Hidlay
197lbs: #7 Jacob Warner vs #15 Isaac Trumble
285: #6 Tony Cassioppi vs #28 Owen Terphan
Opponent: #5 NC State
Dual time: 5:00PM GT (Central) // Tuesday, Dec. 21 2021
Location: Northwestern Florida College // Niceville, FL
TV/ Online: Rokfin ($$$)