NCAA Wrestling Championships: Day 2 Recap

Danny Rice Sports Reporter

Amar Dhesi earns All-American status for the Beavers

After a day that saw five wrestlers get eliminated, day two ended with redshirt sophomore heavyweight Amar Dhesi earning All-American honors—ending the two-year drought for the Beavers. The last time a Beaver earned All-American honors was back in 2013 when Scott Sackaguchi got fifth, RJ Pena received fifth and Taylor Meek earned fourth.

Dhesi, in his second NCAA appearance, faced Arizona State’s Tanner Hall in the “blood round” Friday night where the winner would advance and guarantee a top eight finish and the loser would be sent home.

With the score tied 1-1 in the third round, Dhesi secured a takedown and the victory—solidifying All-American honors for the first time in his career.

Dhesi started the day losing to the number two-seed Kyle Snyder of Ohio State 16-5 but bounced back by defeating Hall and then earned an 8-5 victory over the number nine seed Michael Kroells of Minnesota, 8-5. He will wrestle Adam Coon of Michigan tomorrow morning to see who will wrestle for third and fourth and for fifth and sixth.

Sophomore Ronnie Bresser had a strong start to the day as he pinned Sean Russell of Edinboro in the second round and defeated Tim Lambert of Nebraska 5-4. He then faced a familiar opponent in Connor Schram of Stanford. Schram beat Bresser twice this season, including in the Pac-12 finals. Unfortunately for Bresser, history repeated itself.

After a scoreless first round, Bresser took the bottom position to begin round two. Schram turned Bresser for two points—which would turn out to be the difference in the match. Bresser would escape later in the second round and Schram would escape in round three to bring the final score to 3-1 in favor of Schram—ending Bresser’s season.

Bresser finished his standout season going 31-9.

Redshirt junior 133-pounder Joey Palmer won his first match of the day over the 13-seed Cameron Kelly of Ohio, 11-2. He then faced the number 12-seed Ryan Taylor of Wisconsin. Palmer was leading 3-0 midway through the second round but Taylor fought back to tie the score at 4-4 and ultimately earned a riding time point to win, 5-4.

Palmer ended the season going 26-12.

Redshirt junior 149-pounder Joey Delgado wrestled Geordan Martinez of Boise State to begin the day and was leading midway through the third round, 4-3. Martinez would escape and with riding time, beat Delgado 5-4—eliminating Delgado from the tournament.

Delgado finished his junior campaign going 25-16.

Senior 165-pounder Seth Thomas faced the number seven-seed Anthony Perrotti of Rutgers, seeking to regain revenge for an earlier season loss—but Thomas was unsuccessful.

Perrotti led 12-1 after two rounds—a lead Thomas couldn’t overcome. Thomas lost 15-6 and ultimately ended his Beaver career.

Thomas finished his senior season going 22-11 and his Beaver career at 82-36. He also finishes his career as a two-time NCAA qualifier.

Redshirt freshman 184-pounder Corey Griego had a tough draw to start day two as he wrestled the number four-seed, Domenic Abounader of Michigan. Griego wrestled Abounader down to the wire and was reversed in overtime to solidify the win for Abounader—ending Griego’s redshirt freshman season.

Griego finishes his breakout year going 24-12.

After day two, the Beavers are in 23rd place with 19 points. Stanford is leading the Pac-12 schools with 19.5 points and are in 22nd place. Penn State still leads the team race with 114 points, followed by Oklahoma State with 79.5 and Iowa with 77.5.

Day three starts tomorrow at 8 a.m. PT or 11 a.m. ET and the finals are being aired on ESPN, beginning at 5 p.m. PT.