Bobby Douglas assessed the Cyclone's quarter-final results better than anyone.
"We wrestled well, but not well enough……We lost some heartbreakers."
Nate Gallick pulled through again and advanced to the semi-finals with a 3-0 decision over Rader of West Virginia. Gallick scored a TD with 12 seconds left in the first period and held on for a hard-fought victory.
"Nothing's easy with anybody in the tournament, especially not him…..These guys are tough. They are coming after me. I have to be on my ‘A game' in order to be with them," commented Gallick after his quarter-final win.
The low scoring was a strategic move by Gallick.
"He's kind of a ‘big move wrestler' so I just wanted to make sure I was wrestling smart and didn't get over offensive if it wasn't necessary."
Trent Paulson put his title hopes on the line against 9 seed Joe Johnston
"The last couple times I wrestled him I haven't been as risky or taken as many chances and this time I felt like I did a good job of staying in good position….When something was there I hit it," commented Johnston after his upset win.
"It's definitely important; especially for a guy like me. He's a real good position wrestler, he's real explosive, ya know he's going to score off my mistakes a lot."
Travis came into his match on the attack against the #1 seed and undefeated Churella of Michigan. In the end, it wasn't enough to upset the #1-ranked Churella in a tight 6-4 loss.
Churella praised Travis for his strength and good philosophy that he had going into the match.
"He's got pretty powerful hips and ever time I was shooting straight in he was just blowing me down….He holds a good position."
Paulson got right after it with a TD in the first period, followed by a Cherella escape, to make it 2-1 Travis at the end of the first period. Churella was able to tie it up at 2-2 with an escape but Travis responded with a great double-leg TD to regain the lead at 4-2 going into the third period.
Neither wrestler was able to do very much until about one minute remained in the match. Churella grabbed a great TD and immediately rolled Travis through into a cradle for two near fall points. That four-point move gave Churella a 6-4 lead with 26 seconds to go. Churella rode Travis out to avoid the upset and move on to the semi-finals.
Both Tent and Travis will have to shake off two heartbreaking losses and fight for third-place finishes on the season.
Backes came into his consolation match with a different goal than yesterday: defeat Todd of Michigan and fight my way through the consolation bracket for third-place.
Backes set the tone of the match by gaining a TD only 12 seconds into the match and riding out Todd for the rest of the first period. A reversal in the second period and a TD at the end of the same period, helped Backes on to a dominating 8-3 victory.