Throughout the day, I've barely had time to sit down and think, let along write down my thoughts. I thought I'd go through weight by weight and let you guys know what I've seen.
125 – Charlie Falck
Charlie, as usual, put himself in a tough situation early on, but came back to win. He needs to get over that, or he'll meet someone who can take advantage, like his next round opponent, Angel Escobedo. Charlie was ridden the entire first period of his match, but quickly recovered, nearly scoring a fall in the second before coasting to an 8-4 victory. The three remaining wrestlers on the championship side at 125 pounds have all had their battles with Flack. If he defeats Escobedo, he'll wrestle either Ness, who he has never beaten, or Gabe Flores, an Illinois wrestler who pinned Falck at Midlands.
133 – Joe Slaton
Slaton looked on point in his opening match, giving up only one point, and nearly got more bonus points with a 12-6 victory against Humphrey from Ohio State. Slaton got a slow start in that match, that was taking place at the same time as Falck's. Brands, who was in Falck's corner, saw Slaton was getting in a bad position and tried yelling across the arena at him to stay back on his opponent's legs. When Slaton scored a nice takedown and appeared to be close to back points, Brands jumped up from his chair, ran across the arena, shouted some instructions, and ran back to Falck's mat. Slaton will be facing Franklin Gomez of Michigan State, one of the quickest wrestlers in the building. He won't be able to coast through the first period of the match, this time.
141 – Dan LeClere
LeClere nearly gave the Iowa fans a heart attack. Garrett Scott, who had warmed up with a fall in a pigtail match, was leading late in the third period, when LeClere scored and all-too-famiiliar last second takedown to win. Brands couldn't have been happy about the way the match finished, but the result was good, he moves on. He'll have his hands full with Kellen Russell of Michigan. Back at the National Duals, LeClere was beginning to take over his match against Russell before getting caught in a throw and quickly pinned. Russell ddin't look overly impressive in his 8-7 decision over Illinois' Ryan Prater last round.
149 – Brent Metcalf
A man on a mission. He was standing matside as LeClere put his match away, and it seemed to pump him up even more. Two matches, two falls, not much more to say. While Grant Paswall took injury time during his match, Metcalf walked around the mat, and appeared to be purposely ignoring the Schlatter/Kinser match on the adjoining mat. Next round, Metcalf gets Bubba Jenkins, who he embarrassed at Carver-Hawkeye earlier this year. After coming out on fire, Jenkins had effectively given up by the end of the second period, refusing to even come to his feet when released.
157 – Ryan Morningstar
Ryan Morningstar tried to pull a Dan LeClere and couldn't make it happen. He was 3 seconds short of getting a last-second takedown, but you can't really be surprised, at this point. If Morningstar intends to make it to nationals, he'll need to not only win his next match, but one of the two he'll be guaranteed after that. If he can finish his shots that he gets in on (of which there were several) he'll have no problem moving past Andrew Nadhir, who he defeated 6-4 in Carver earlier this year. Nadhir lost to Mike Poeta 10-4 in a pigtail.
165 – Mark Perry
He looked incredibly excited to finally be back on the mat. It was great to see that excitement, and no signs of tentativeness. He took an arm, cranked it back, got the count, and pinned him. Efficient, and excited afterwards. Next up is Roger Smith-Bergsrud, who he defeated earlier this year at a tournament. Bergsrud can stay active, and might keep Perry off him for a little while, but once he gets in, Perry had no problem.
174 – Jay Borschel
A solid performance, getting the major in his first match. Still leaves his legs out there, but feels confident enough (and rightly so) to wrestle out of those positions. He'll get a match with a slow-starting Gabriel Dretch of Minnesota in the semifinals. Dretch beat unseeded Trevor Perry of Indiana 4-1 in his quarterfinal match.
184 – Phil Keddy
Phil gets in some rough situations. More than once, he was on his back, saved only by reaction time and his own strength. Midway through the first period, Brands yelled "No more bearhugs!" and Keddy obliged. Keddy could have probably extended his win over Bennet to a major with a bit more effort in the third period, but he'll need everything he's got, as he gets a rematch with Tyrell Todd, who took care of Ben Friedl of Illinois 15-5. Keddy has lost to Todd twice this year, 3-2 at the National Duals and 3-1 in Carver-Hawkeye last month.
197 – Chad Beatty
Beatty was overmatched from the beginning. At one point, Phil Davis had a hold of Beatty's wrist, through his legs, and used it literally lift Beatty 2 feet off the group. Beatty never quit, nearly getting a fall on a late reversal and back points. He still gave up the major, 15-6. Beatty will face Joe Fagiano of Indiana. Beatty won their meeting in Carver Hawkeye last month, 9-7. He's in the same boat as Morningstar, with regards to national qualification. He needs to win his match against Fagiano, and the one of the next two.
HWT – Matt Fields
Fields definitely brought his offense with him this week. He had a good-sized lead when he pinned Alan O'Donnell in his pigtail match, then hit 3 late takedowns to pull ahead of John Wise, a wrestler who's given fields trouble in the past. Now, he'll get the surprise #1 seed, Justin Bergman of Ohio State. This is probably a good thing for Fields, who would avoid Fox until the finals. Bergman beat unranked Nathan Everhart of Indiana 5-4 in his quarterfinal match, so Fields has as good a shot against Bergman as any other heavyweight, outside of Fox. When Iowa wrestled Ohio State earlier this year, Fields lost to Bergman 4-2.
The second session starts up from Minneapolis at 6pm, look for updates throughout the session, as well as photos, analysis and coach/wrestler interviews following the session.