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By Mike Finn
ST. LOUIS — For the first time in history, both Binghamton and Appalachian State left the NCAA Division I nationals with two All-Americans each Saturday afternoon in the Scottrade Center.
Binghamton’s effort was highlighted by an incredible third-place finish by Donnie Vinson at 149 pounds where the first-round loser fought back to win seven consolation bouts over three days, including an 11-9 win over American University’s Ganbayar Sanjaa in the consolation final.
Also earning All-American honors for the upstate New York school was freshman Nick Gwiazdowski, who claimed eighth-place at heavyweight.
Meanwhile, Appalachian State’s Austin Trotman left the nationals with a third-place finish as his 3-1 sudden victory over defending national runner-up Robert Hamlin of Lehigh meant the Mountaineer, seeded No. 9, beat the top three seeds in the national tournament.
Also earning All-American honors for the North Carolina school was 165-pound Kyle Blevins, who also lost a first-round match but battled back to finish fourth.
Meanwhile, Penn State wrapped up its second straight team championship when 157-pound freshman Dylan Alton defeated Northwestern’s Jason Welch for third place at 157 pounds. The Nittany Lions, who have 128.5 points, will have five finalists. The battle for seccond place appears to be between Minnesota (113.5) and Iowa (103.5) The Gophers have two finalists while Iowa will send out three wrestlers in the finals that begin at 6:30 CDT.
The following are the All-American match highlights:
3rd Place — #2 Zach Sanders (Minnesota) dec. #6 Frank Perrelli (Cornell), 6-4 sv — The four-time Gopher All-American ended his career on a high and dramatic note: first by scoring a takedown on the edge with 28 seconds left, then ending the match on a double with 36 seconds left in overtime.
5th Place — #8 Ryan Mango (Stanford) dec. #5 Nic Bedelyon (Kent State), 6-4 sv — The Cardinal, who trailed 3-0 entering the third period forced overtime with a double leg takedown with 15 seconds left in regulation before he exploded with a double leg takedown eight seconds into overtime to improve on his sixth-place finish from a year ago.
7th Place — #4 Jesse Delgado (Illinois) dec. #12 Steve Bonanno (Hofstra), 3-1 — The Illini freshman scored the only takedown in the match with two seconds left.
3rd Place — #3 Tony Ramos (Iowa) pinned #10 Chris Dardanes (Minnesota), 6:50 — The Hawkeye was leading 9-4 — thanks in large part to a pair of first-period takedowns — when he countered a shot by the Gopher freshman and took Dardanes to his back for a quick fall.
5th Place — #6 Devin Carter (Virginia Tech) pinned B.J. Futrell (Illinois), 1:45 — Trailing 2-0, the Hokie reversed the Illini to his back with 1:25 left and pinned him ten seconds later.
7th Place — #8 Zach Stevens (Michigan) dec. Steven Keith (Harvard), 13-11 — The Wolverine literally got off is back from a 4-1 first-period deficit and took the lead for good in the second period when he scored a reversal and also put the Crimson on his back for a two-point nearfall as the period ended.
3rd Place — #6 Borislav Novachkov (Cal Poly) dec. #2 Kendric Maple (Oklahoma), 4-3 tb2 — A nine-second difference in riding time after the second set of tiebreakers let the Cal Poly senior ride out the Sooner and end his career on a high note. All the points came via escape, including one by each wrestler in the first set of tiebreakers.
5th Place — #4 Michael Mangrum (Oregon St.) pinned #5 Hunter Stieber (Ohio State), 4:14 — After a scoreless first period, the Beaver reversed the Buckeye freshman to his back with 1:06 left in the second and pinned him 19 seconds later.
7th Place — US Michael Nevinger (Cornell) dec. #8 Darius Little (NC State), 10-3 — The unheralded Big Red wrestler amassed over two minutes of riding time, thanks in lart part to a takedown and three-point nearfall in the first period.
3rd Place — #4 Donald Vinson (Binghamton) dec. #10 Cam Tessari (Ohio State), 12-10 — The Bearcat completed an incredible run of seven consecutive wins in wrestlebacks — after losing to Oklahoma’s Nick Lester in the first round — by scoring three takedowns in the first frame and using a 1:32 riding time advantage to hold off a rally by Tessari, who also lost a first round match to Harvard’s Corey Jantzen before winning six straight consolation bouts.
5th Place — #6 Tyler Nauman (Pittsburgh) dec. US Justin Accordino (Hofstra), 4-3 — After giving up a first-period takedown, the Panther took the lead for good when he scored his only takedown with three seconds left.
7th Place — US Scott Sakaguchi (Oregon St.) dec. US Nick Lester (Oklahoma), 1-0 — Two minutes of riding time by the Beaver led to the only point scored by either unseeded wrestler.
3rd Place — #7 Dylan Alton (Penn State) dec. #3 Jason Welch (Northwestern), 6-2 — The Nittany Lion freshman scored two takedowns: one on high crotch with 1:43 left in the first period and another by a throw-by with 45 seconds left in the match before adding a 1:23 riding time advantage.
5th Place — #6 James Fleming (Clarion) dec. #5 Ganbayar Sanjaa (American), 7-5 — Trailing 5-3 in the final period, the Eagle used an effective ride to score three nearfall points and a 2:03 riding time advantage.
7th Place — #11 James Green (Nebraska) major dec. Walter Peppelman (Harvard), 9-1 — The true Husker freshman built up nearly four minutes of riding time as a second-period reversal extended his lead to 6-0.
3rd Place — #4 Bekzod Abdurakhmonov (Clarion) dec. US Kyle Blevins (Appalachian State), 6-2 — The Eagle scored a takedown in both the first and third periods before leaving the mat with a 2:39 riding time margin.
5th Place — #6 Peter Yates (Virginia Tech) dec. #7 Josh Asper (Maryland), 13-7 — The Hokie used a headlock to open the match with a 5-0 lead then scored a third-period reversal when Asper rode too high, which led to two additional back points.
7th Place — US Benjamin Jordan (Wisconsin) dec. #9 Conrad Polz (Illinois), 5-2 — The Badger, who won four consolation matches after losing in the first round to Wyoming’s Shane Onufer, scored his first takedown with an inside single with two seconds left in the first frame, then added another takedown in the third.
3rd Place — #2 Chris Perry (Oklahoma St.) dec. #7 Jordan Blanton (Illinois), 4-1 — A first-period bodylock by the Cowboy sophomore led to the only takedown of the match as Perry defeated Blanton for the second time in this tournament.
5th Place — #9 Nick Heflin (Ohio State) dec. Logan Storley (Minnesota), 3-2 — A first-period takedown by the Buckeye ended up providing the winning margin.
7th Place — #5 Ethen Lofthouse (Iowa) dec. #6 Ryan DesRoches (Cal Poly), 3-1 — The Hawkeye scored his only takedown with 38 seconds left in the second period.
3rd Place — #9 Austin Trotman (Appalachian State) dec. Robert Hamlin (Lehigh), 3-1 sv — The Mountaineer jumped for joy into the arms of his coaches after he scored the match’s only takedown with 38 seconds left in overtime against the defending national runner-up.
5th Place — #5 Kevin Steinhaus (Minnesota) dec. Ben Bennett (Central Michigan), 3-1 — Trailing 1-0 entering the third period, the Gopher scored his points with a reversal and a 1:34 riding time advantage.
7th Place — #1 Joe LeBlanc (Wyoming) won by medical forfeit over Josh Ihnen (Nebraska)
3rd Place — #5 Cayle Byers (Oklahoma State) dec. #3 Matthew Wilps (Pittsburgh), 3-2 — The Cowboy scored the only takedown with 51 seconds left in the first period and held off Wilps’ attacks after taking the lead for good with a third-period escape.
5th Place — #10 Sonny Yohn (Minnesota) dec. #9 Alfonso Hernandez (Wyoming), 4-1 — The Gopher’s second All-American honor was highlighted by a first-period takedown and 1:30 riding time.
7th Place — #11 Micah Burak (Pennsylvania) dec. Joseph Kennedy (Lehigh), 2-1tb — The Quaker won the bout when he refused to led the Mountain Hawk escape in the first set of tiebreakers after Burak scored a second escape during the overtime phase.
3rd Place — #10 Michael McMullan (Northwestern) dec. #3 Clayton Jack (Oregon State), 10-5 — The Wildcat freshman set the tone when he turned a first-period takedown into a cradle then added two more nearfall points in the second period when it looked like Jack might score an escape.
5th Place — #5 Bobby Telford (Iowa) won by medical forfeit over #1 Ryan Flores (American) — The defending national runner-up did not wrestle either match on Saturday after sustaining a concussion in his semifinal loss to Lehigh’s Zach Rey.
7th Place — Jeremy Johnson (Ohio) dec. Nick Gwiazdowski (Binghamton), 11-5 —
The Bobcat rallied from a 2-0 deficit when he scored three of four takedowns in the second period.