March 21, 2014
• Championship Central
March 21, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. -- Senior Tyler Graff joined some elite company in Wisconsin wrestling history early Friday at the 2014 NCAA Wrestling Championships in the Chesapeake Energy Arena by wrapping up his fourth All-America honor.
Isaac Jordan and Connor Medbery dropped their respective quarterfinal matches but can still capture All-America honors with a win in the consolation bracket.
With his quarterfinal win, Graff joins Lee Kemp (1975-78), Matt Hanutke (1992-95) and Donny Pritzlaff (1998-2001) as the only Badger wrestlers to become four-time All-Americans. Graff placed fifth in 2010 and 2011 while finishing third last year.
Graff, a No. 5 seed, obtained All-America status by defeating No. 13 seed Cody Brewer of Oklahoma by decision, 9-6. Graff got on the board first with a takedown with 17 seconds left in the first period. Graff surrendered a quick escape in the second but entered the third up 4-1.
Brewer made things interesting with a takedown with 1:02 left in the third to make it 6-4, but Graff responded almost immediately with one of his own. The four-point deficit was too much for Brewer to overcome, giving Graff the victory and a spot in the UW record books.
Graff will take on top-seeded Joe Colon of UNI in the semifinals. Colon beat Graff 6-0 in November and 6-3 at Midlands in late December. Rival Tony Ramos of Iowa is still alive and could potentially face Graff in the championship round. Ramos beat Graff in the semifinals last season.
At 157 lbs., No. 5 seed Isaac Jordan failed to get anything going offensively and fell to No. 4 seed Ian Miller of Kent State. Jordan’s only takedown came with 30 seconds left in the match. He ultimately fell by decision, 6-2, and will take on North Carolina State’s Thomas Gantt in the fourth round of the consolation bracket. If victorious in that match, Jordan will record his first All-America honor.
Heavyweight Connor Medbery also fell in the quarterfinals but can also become an All-American for the first time with a win in the consolation bracket. Top-seeded Tony Nelson pinned Medbery in 1 minute, 26 seconds and became a four-time All-American in the process.
Redshirt freshmen Ryan Taylor (125 lbs.) and Rylan Lubeck (149) won their respective second round consolation matches but were eliminated after third round defeats. Taylor, the No. 7 seed, beat No. 9 seed Tyler Cox of Wyoming, 11-7, but then fell to No. 16 seed Joey Dance of Virginia Tech, 3-2.
Lubeck dropped a match to Iowa’s Brody Grothus at the Big Tens two weekends ago but beat him by decision, 3-1 in the second round of the consolation bracket. Lubeck then fell to Penn State’s James English, 4-3.
Redshirt junior Timmy McCall was also eliminated Friday after dropping his second round match in the consolation bracket to Pittsburgh’s Nick Bonaccorsi. Bonaccorsi beat McCall by decision, 6-2.
Session IV of the 2014 NCAA Championships will begin at 7 p.m. (CT) Friday. The semifinal matches will take place on the inside two matches while the fourth round consolation matches will take place on the outside four mats. The fifth round of the consolation bracket will follow on all six mats.