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    Welch, McMullan Punch Ticket to NCAAs, Wrestle in B1G Semis

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    No. 2 seed Jason Welch takes on No. 6 seed Josh Dumas of OSU in tonight's 157 lbs. semfinals.

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    No. 2 seed Jason Welch takes on No. 6 seed Josh Dumas of OSU in tonight's 157 lbs. semfinals.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    March 9, 2013

    2013 Big Ten Wrestling Championships
    Saturday, March 9-Sunday, March 10 • All Day
    Saturday: Session I - 10 a.m. CT / Session II - 5 p.m. CT
    Sunday: Session III - 11:30 a.m. CT / Session IV - 1:30 p.m. CT
    Site: Assembly Hall (Champaign, Ill.)
    Live Tweets: @NU_SportsLIVE / @NU_Wrestle / #B1GWrestle
    Session I-III Live Video Links
    TV: Sunday's finals air live on Big Ten Network (1:30 p.m.)
    NU Result After Session I: 8th/12 teams (22.0 points)

    2013 Big Ten Championships Website

    Northwestern Big Ten Championships Notes Get Acrobat Reader

    2013 Big Ten Wrestling Brackets

    TrackWrestling.com play-by-play & updated brackets

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Northwestern returning All-Americans Jason Welch (157) and Mike McMullan (285) are still in contention for a Big Ten title as they both secured a spot in the semifinals at their respective weight classes. Welch went 2-0 in Session I while McMullan won his lone bout of the day to make it to the final four. True freshman Dominick Malone (125) and redshirt sophomores Pat Greco (141) and Pierce Harger (165) each won a bout during the first session and will compete in the consolation round this evening.
     
    At the end of the first session, Northwestern is eighth in the team standings with 22.0 points, four points behind seventh-place Nebraska (26.0).
     
    Second-seeded Jason Welch won his first bout of the day with a 7-3 decision over Matt Nora from Illinois at 157. The two-time All-American used two takedowns, a reversal and had the riding time advantage in the victory. That win set up a meeting with No. 7 Ryan Watts of Michigan State. Welch cruised to an 8-1 decision, surrendering only a first-period escape, to punch his ticket to the semifinals where he will meet Ohio State's No. 6 seed Josh Demas. These two met during the regular season with the NU senior taking the 4-1 decision. Welch has also officially secured a trip to his fourth NCAA Wrestling Championships as he can place no lower than sixth and the top seven wrestlers at 157 automatically qualify for NCAA's.
     
    No. 2 Mike McMullan was the only Northwestern wrestler to have a first-round bye and his first match was the very last bout of Session I as he took on No. 7 Jimmy Lawson of Penn State in the 285 quarterfinals. McMullan had the 2-1 edge after one, added an escape in the second and another takedown to lead 5-1 going into the third. Lawson escaped to start the third and tacked on a late takedown but the NU All-American added 2:27 of riding time in the 6-4 win. He will meet Wisconsin's No. 3 seed Connor Medbery in tonight's semifinals. McMullan, who also has secured a spot in the 2013 NCAA Championships, defeated Medbery 9-3 at Midlands.
     
    No. 8 seed Dominick Malone wrestled the first match of the morning for Northwestern at 125 and made quick work of Wisconsin's Matt Cavallaris, recording the first-period fall in 2:35. It was Malone's team-leading eighth fall of the year and earned him a trip to the quarterfinals vs. top-seeded Matt McDonough of Iowa.
     
    Malone was the aggressor from the start against McDonough and scored the first takedown of the match and had the 4-1 lead after a second first-period takedown. McDonough evened things up at 4-4 by the time the first period expired but Malone had racked up riding time. In the second, McDonough recorded an escape at 1:13 to take the 5-4 lead but Malone still had 1:05 of riding time. Neither wrestler scored the remainder of the period and Malone started the third period down. The NU true freshman was unable to escape as McDonough, who is a two-time NCAA Champion and three-time finalist, erased Malone's riding time to take the narrow 5-4 victory. Malone now meets Indiana's Joe Duca in the wrestleback round this evening, whom he is 1-1 against this season.
     
    Competing in his first Big Ten Championships, redshirt sophomore and seventh-seeded seed Pat Greco (141) wrestled one of the more exciting matches of the morning, scoring a takedown in the closing seconds to secure the 3-1 win over Steven Rodrigues of Illinois. Each wrestler traded a pair of escapes in the second and third and Greco scored the winning takedown as time expired.
     
    Greco faced No. 2 seed Nick Dardanes in the quarters and recorded a pair of escapes but the Minnesota wrestler advanced to the 141 lbs. semifinals with the 6-2 decision. Greco now meets Michigan State's Nick Trimble, a wrestler he beat 8-2 during the dual season, in tonight's wrestleback round.
     
    No. 6 seed Pierce Harger recorded more bonus points for NU in his first-round bout at 165 with the 10-1 major decision over No. 11 Frank Cousins Jr. from Wisconsin. Harger scored a takedown six seconds into the first and had 2:54 of riding time going into the second period. He ended the match with more than six minutes of riding time.
     
    In the quarters, Harger faced No. 3 Taylor Massa from Michigan. Massa scored the first takedown but Harger evened things up in the second (2-2) with a takedown of his own. Massa added an escape and takedown to lead 5-2 going into the third. Harger started the third on top and rode out the entire period but Massa still had over a minute of riding time and hung on for the 6-2 decision. Tonight, Harger wrestles MSU's Nick Proctor. Harger recorded the 7-0 win over Proctor in the regular season.
     
    Garrison White (133), Dylan Marriott (149), No. 7 seed Lee Munster (174), Jacob Berkowitz (184) and No. 9 seed Alex Polizzi (197) dropped their morning matches and will compete in the wrestleback round this evening.
     
    Pigtail Round
    125: No. 8 Dominick Malone (NU) pins Matt Cavallaris (WIS), 2:35
    133: No. 3 Tyler Graff (WIS) tech fall Garrison White (NU), 20-4
    141: No. 7 Pat Greco (NU) dec Steven Rodrigues (ILL), 3-1
    149: No. 3 Dylan Ness (MIN) dec Dylan Marriott (NU), 9-3
    157: No. 2 Jason Welch (NU) dec Matt Nora (ILL), 7-3
    165: No. 6 Pierce Harger (NU) maj dec No. 11 Frank Cousins Jr. (WIS), 10-1
    174: No. 10 Chad Welch (PUR) dec No. 7 Lee Munster (NU), 3-2
    184: No. 2 Kevin Steinhaus (MIN) tech fall Jacob Berkowitz (NU), 19-1
    197: No. 8 Max Huntley (MICH) dec No. 9 Alex Polizzi (NU), 7-3
     
    Quarterfinals
    125: No. 1 Matt McDonough (IOWA) dec No. 8 Dominick Malone (NU), 5-4
    141: No. 2 Nick Dardanes (MIN) dec No. 7 Pat Greco (NU), 6-2
    157: No. 2 Jason Welch (NU) dec No. 7 Ryan Watts (MSU), 8-1
    165: No. 3 Taylor Massa (MICH) dec No. 6 Pierce Harger (NU), 6-2
    285: No. 2 Mike McMullan (NU) dec No. 7 Jimmy Lawson (PSU), 6-4

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