The University of Iowa returned to its winning ways.
The third-ranked Hawkeyes won eight of 10 matches to defeat No. 19 Northwestern, 31-6, in a Big Ten Conference dual Friday night at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, Ill. It was the ninth straight win in the series for the Hawkeyes, who improved to 12-2 overall and 5-1 in the conference. BTN will air the taped dual Monday at 9 a.m. (Iowa time).
The victory mark the return of Cory Clark and Ethen Lofthouse to the Hawkeyes starting lineup. Clark hadn't wrestled since competing in the Midlands Championships semifinals Dec. 30, while Lofthouse has recovered from a knee injury suffered Jan. 4. Clark opened the dual with a major decision, using two takedowns, a reversal and three nearfall for a 10-1 win over Garrison White at 125.
Clark (13-0) had been ranked in the top-five before finishing sixth at the Midlands. Gilman, who won the Midlands, had wrestled every dual since and is ranked third.
"It's been awhile since he's been out there," Iowa Coach Tom Brands said in a post-dual interview with KXIC-AM's Mark Grace. "We have to keep him moving along but keep Gilman moving along as well."
Lofthouse missed a bonus-point win with an 11-5 decision over Jacob Berkowitz at 184. Lofthouse scored two takedowns in each of the first two periods.
Tony Ramos added boost at 133, propelling Iowa to a 10-0 lead. Ramos built a 13-5 lead by the end of the second period and pinned Dominick Malone in 5:23. Ramos broke open a 2-1 match after one with five takedowns in the second.
"Ramos was good," Brands said. "He was a little slow at the beginning, but good."
Derek St. John (157) and Nick Moore (165) posted consecutive wins for the Hawkeyes, who outscored Northwestern, 60-30, in match points. St. John topped Benjamin Sullivan, 8-3. Moore, ranked fourth, beat No. 7 Pierce Harger, 7-3. Mike Evans received a forfeit at the next weight, giving Iowa a 25-3 advantage.
"I like that," Brands said about Moore's win. "I think we can widen the gap more, though."
The Hawkeyes had three overtime matches and came away with two victories in those bouts. Josh Dziewa rode Pat Greco for the first of two 30-second tiebreaker periods and escaped in the second for a 5-4 at 141. Nathan Burak (197) earned a takedown in the one-minute sudden-victory overtime period to beat Alex Polizzi, 3-1, putting Iowa up, 31-3. It was Burak's second two-point victory over Polizzi this season.
The heavyweight match was decided in overtime as well. Northwestern's third-ranked Mike McMullan took down top-ranked Bobby Telford in sudden victory for a 3-1 win, capping the dual.
"The guy did to Telford what Telford needed to do to the guy," Brands said. "Telford needed to do that to the guy earlier. We looked like we were getting to him, wearing him down a little bit, but you can't just wear a guy down and hope he's going to fall down by blowing on him. You have to go."
Northwestern (6-6, 1-6) picked up its other win at 149. The Wildcats' Jason Tsirtsis avenged a loss to Brody Grothus at the Midlands with a 5-2 win.
Iowa hosts Michigan in the home finale Sunday, Feb. 9 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The dual is scheduled for 2 p.m.
AT EVANSTON, ILL.
Iowa 31, Northwestern 6
(Individual takedowns in parentheses)
125 pounds – Cory Clark (I) major dec. Garrison White, 10-1 (2, 0); 133 – Tony Ramos (I) pinned Dominick Malone, 5:23 (6, 0); 141 – Josh Dziewa (I) dec. Pat Greco, 5-4 TB1 (1, 1); 149 – Jason Tsirtsis (N) dec. Brody Grothus, 5-2 (2, 0); 157 – Derek St. John (I) dec. Benjamin Sullivan, 8-3 (3, 0); 165 – Nick Moore (I) dec. Pierce Harger, 7-3 (2, 0); 174 – Mike Evans (I) won by forfeit; 184 – Ethen Lofthouse (I) dec. Jacob Berkowitz, 11-5 (4, 1); 197 – Nathan Burak (I) dec. Alex Polizzi, 3-1 SV OT (1, 0); Hwt. – Mike McMullan (N) dec. Bobby Telford, 3-1 SV OT (1, 0)
MEET STATISTICSTakedowns – Iowa 19, Northwestern 5. Reversals – Iowa 1, Northwestern 1. Escapes – Iowa 13, Northwestern 17. Nearfall points – Iowa 3, Northwestern 0. Penalty points (awarded) – Iowa 0, Northwestern 1. Riding-time points – Iowa 4, Northwestern 0. Total match points - Iowa 60, Northwestern 30. Attendance - 1,832.