Reader to Quarters, Four Clones Alive
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Top seeded Iowa Stater Jon Reader won his second-round match and three other Cyclone wrestlers remain alive in the consolation bracket of the NCAA Wrestling Championships in Wells Fargo Arena Thursday. Iowa State is in 31st place with nine points. Penn State leads the team competition with 30.5 points. The quarterfinal round begins Friday at 9:30 a.m. CDT.
Reader quickly took down Purdue’s Luke Manuel and earned three back points in the first period to jump out to a 5-0 lead. The Cyclone then continued his dominance throughout the balance of the match, racking up over four minutes of riding time on the way to a 13-0 major decision victory. Reader will wrestle No. 8 seed Mike Letts of Maryland in the quarterfinals Friday morning. Reader defeated Letts 6-1 at the Midlands Championships earlier this season.
“It is all about scoring points,” Reader said. “I felt good on top and did not have any feelings of frustration trying to turn him. I am thinking about one thing and one thing only, and that is wrestling.”
Jerome Ward’s takedown attempt was fought off as time expired in his second-round match against sixth-seeded Micah Burak of Penn in the second round of the 197-pound weight class. Ward fell to Burak by a score of 2-1 and will now have to attempt to navigate the bottom portion of the bracket to become an All-American.
"John has great focus right now and it shows on the mat," Iowa State head wrestling coach Kevin Jackson said. "If he keeps wrestling like this he will be fine. We still have four in the tournament. I was disapointed that Jerome didn't get it done. Chris Drouin wrestled a great match. Everyone will have to step it up tomorrow."
In wrestlebacks, Drouin defeated Cody Cleveland in a battle of former All-Americans by a score of 7-3. The senior used a late takedown to keep his season alive. Drouin will take on Matthew Bonson of Binghamton Friday morning.
Cole Shafer's tournament was ended by Northern Illinois' Brad Dieckhaus. Shafer fell by an 11-2 major decision. Simonson scored a takedown to beat Ohio's Jeremy Johnson, 3-0.
#1 Jon Reader (Iowa State) mdec. Luke Manuel (Purdue), 13-0
#6 Micah Burak (Penn) dec. #11 Jerome Ward (Iowa State), 2-1
Chris Drouin (Iowa State) dec. Cody Cleveland (Tennessee – Chattanooga), 7-3
Brad Dieckhaus (Northern Illinois) mdec. Cole Shafer (Iowa State), 11-2
Kyle Simonson (Iowa State) vs Jeremy Johnson (Ohio), 3-0.