DES MOINES — Iowa will have two wrestlers competing for titles Saturday night at the NCAA championships.
They’ll need to beat Big Ten rivals to win those crowns.
Tony Ramos will square off with Ohio State’s Logan Stieber in the 133-pound final, while Derek St. John faces Northwestern’s Jason Welch in the final at 157.
Iowa is in fourth place in the team standings entering the event’s final day, but the Hawkeyes aren’t in the title chase after they went 2-4 during the quarterfinal round Friday morning.
Two-time defending champion Penn State is in control of the team race with 114.5 points, while Oklahoma State is second with 94, Minnesota has 86 and Iowa 68. Penn State has five wrestlers in Saturday’s 7 p.m. finals, which will be broadcast on ESPN.
Among the Hawkeyes dropping quarterfinal matches was 125-pound defending national champion Matt McDonough, who lost 4-2 in overtime to Cornell’s Nahshon Garrett.
Ramos suffered his only loss of the season to Stieber 3-1 in overtime in the Big Ten final two weeks ago. Stieber is the defending national champion and unbeaten this season.
St. John and Welch haven’t wrestled this season. Welch and St. John each split two matches with Nebraska’s James Green this season. That was Welch’s only loss this year, while St. John is 30-2.
Nebraska’s lone semifinalist, sophomore Robert Kokesh (174), lost 4-2 in overtime to top-seeded and No. 1-ranked Chris Perry of Oklahoma State.
Kokesh trailed 1-0 after two periods before he got a reversal to take a 2-1 lead early in the third period. Perry, who finished third at nationals last year, escaped to tie the match and force overtime. Perry then won with a takedown in the first overtime.
Earlier Friday, Kokesh cruised to an 11-3 win over fifth-seeded Josh Asper of Maryland in the quarterfinals. That snapped Asper’s 16-match winning streak.
Kokesh, who didn’t place at nationals as a freshman, will finish between third and sixth place this year as he’ll compete in wrestlebacks Saturday morning. Kokesh’s first competitor Saturday will be Iowa’s Mike Evans, who has defeated Kokesh in their previous three meetings.
After being upset in the first round Thursday, Green won three consolation matches Friday at 157 pounds before being pinned by Virginia’s Jedd Moore. Green will wrestle Clarion’s James Flaming in the seventh-place match Saturday.
Jake Sueflohn, the other Nebraska wrestler to reach the quarterfinals, lost 11-3 Friday morning to top-seeded Jordan Oliver of Oklahoma State at 149 pounds. Sueflohn then dropped a 5-3 decision to Minnesota’s Dylan Ness in the consolation round Friday night. Ness also defeated Sueflohn in the Big Ten final.
At 184 pounds, senior Josh Ihnen earned a 9-6 decision over Tony Dallago of Illinois in the consolation bracket. It was his third win of the tournament and No. 100 for his career, making him the 21st wrestler in Husker history to win at least 100 matches.
Ihnen lost his next match, and he and Sueflohn each finished one win short of All-America status.
Quarterfinals: 149: Jordan Oliver, Oklahoma State, major dec. Jake Sueflohn, Neb, 11-3. 174: Robert Kokesh, Neb, major dec. Josh Asper, Maryland, 11-3.
Semifinals: Chris Perry, Oklahoma State, dec. Kokesh, 4-2 SV.
Consolation bracket second round: 157: James Green, Neb, major dec. Taylor Walsh, Indiana, 19-8. 165: Austin Wilson, Neb, dec. Josh Condon, Chattanooga, 10-7. 184: Josh Ihnen, Neb, dec. Stephen Doty, Virginia, 7-5. 197: Richard Perry, Bloomsburg, dec. Caleb Kolb, Neb, 7-3.
Consolation bracket third round: 157: Green pinned Tommy Churchard, Purdue, 3:31. 165: Steven Monk, North Dakota State, major dec. Wilson, 9-1. 184: Ihnen dec. over Tony Dallago, Illinois, 9-6.
Consolation bracket fourth round: 149: Dylan Ness, Minnesota, dec. Sueflohn, 5-3. 157: Green major dec. Dylan Alton, Penn State, 14-4. 184: Ryan Loder, Northern Iowa, dec. Ihnen 5-2
Consolation quarterfinals: 157: Jedd Moore, Virginia, pinned Green, 6:15
Quarterfinals: 125: Nahshon Garrett, Cornell, dec. Matt McDonough, Iowa, 4-2 SV1. 133: Tony Ramos, Iowa, dec. Jon Morrison, Oklahoma State, 6-1. 141: Kendric Maple, Oklahoma, major dec. Mark Ballweg, Iowa, 12-3. 157: Derek St. John, Iowa, dec. Josh Demas, Ohio State, 4-0. 174: Logan Storley, Minnesota, dec. Mike Evans, Iowa, 3-2. 184: Steve Bosak, Cornell, dec. Ethen Lofthouse, Iowa, 4-1.
Semifinals: 133: Ramos dec. Tyler Graff, Wisconsin, 6-4 SV. 157: St. John dec. Alex Dieringer, Oklahoma State, 3-2.
Consolation bracket third round: 165: Josh Veltre, Bloomsburg, dec. Nick Moore, IOWA, 8-5. 197: Nathan Burak, Iowa, pinned Nathan Schiedel, Binghamton, 2:34. 285: Bobby Telford, Iowa, inj. default.
Consolation bracket fourth round: 125: Trent Sprenkle, North Dakota State, dec. McDonough, 3-1 SV. 141: Michael Nevinger, Cornell, dec. Ballweg, 12-8. 174: Evans major dec. Todd Porter, Missouri, 8-0. 184: Lofthouse dec. Jacob Swartz, Boise State, 3-2. 197: Alfonso Hernandez, Wyoming, dec. Burak, 6-3.
Consolation quarterfinals: 174: Evans dec. Cody Walters, Ohio, 5-2. 184: Lofthouse dec. Mike Larson, Missouri, 3-0.
IOWA STATE RESULTS
Quarterfinals: 174: Matt Brown, Penn State, maj. dec. Tanner Weatherman, ISU, 13-5.
Consolation bracket second round: 165: Michael Moreno, ISU, pinned Bret Baumbach, Stanford, 3:37. 184: Mike Larson, Missouri, dec. Boaz Beard ISU, 2-1. 197: Kyven Gadson, ISU, dec. Brent Haynes, Missouri, 6-3. 285: Matt Gibson, ISU, dec. Evan Knutson, North Dakota State, 4-2.
Consolation bracket third round: Moreno pinned Mark Martin, Ohio State, 4:27. 197: Gadson dec. Rich Perry, Bloomsburg, 4-3. 285: Gibson pinned Mike McClure, Michigan State, 1:34.