Iowa clinches 24th NCAA title, first since 2010

Updated: March 20, 2021

Photo: Anthony Cassioppi (top) did more than get a leg up on Arizona State’s Cohlton Schultz as the Hawkeye claimed third place at heavyweight and clinched the team championship for Iowa Saturday morning in St. Louis’ Enterprise Center. (John Sachs photo)

By Mike Finn

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — It took going through 11 years of disappointment and COVID pandemic that cancelled Iowa’s biggest wrestling goal a year ago, but the Hawkeyes finally returned to the top of the college wrestling world when results from Saturday morning’s All-American round clinched the team championship in the 2021 NCAA Division I Championships at the Enterprise Center.

DI Brackets_after session 6

Three of the four Hawkeyes who came back to compete in the final All-American matches — before Saturday night’s finals — won their bouts that also gives Iowa 125 points. Both Austin DeSanto (133) and heavyweight Anthony Cassioppi fought back to claim third place and 157-pound Kaleb Young won his seventh place match, while 197-pound Jacob Warner settled for fifth place.

Three more Hawkeyes — Spencer Lee (125), Jaydin Eierman (141) and Michael Kemerer (174) — will be among the 20 athletes who compete in Saturday night’s finals, which begin at 6 p.m. CDT. They hope to add individual titles to their team’s success, which had not happened since 2010. This also marks Iowa’s 24th all-time team championship.

The only other team question is what three other teams will take home one of the four trophies presented to the top four teams.

Penn State, which had won eight of the previous nine NCAAs and four straight before the 2020 cancelled national tournament, sits in second place with 97.5 points, just two points ahead of Oklahoma State. The Nittany Lions feature four finalists and OSU has two competing in the finals. One of the finals that could decide second place could come in the opening match, when OSU’s top-seed Daton Fix takes on PSU’s No. 2 Roman Bravo-Young. (The NCAA announced that the final weight to be decided will come at 125 pounds, where Iowa’s Spencer Lee shoots for a third NCAA title against Arizona State’s Brandon Courtney.)

Meanwhile, Michigan with one finalist, still as a mathematical opportunity to catch Arizona State, which was has a finalist, and claim fourth as a team.

Top-10 Team Scores (After All-American Round)

Pl. School (Finalists/AA) Pts
1 Iowa (3/7) 125
2 Penn State  (4/6) 97.5
3 Oklahoma State  (2/5) 95.5
4 Arizona State  (1/5) 74
5 Michigan (1/3) 69
6 NC State  (1/4) 68
7 Missouri  (0/3) 64
8 Minnesota  (1/3) 60
9 Ohio State  (1/2) 46.5
10 Northwestern (0/3) 45

Other Schools with Finalists

11. Pitt (2/2) 40.5
15. Iowa State (1/2) 33.5
16. North Carolina (1/2) 32
17. Stanford (1/2) 31.5
20. Rider (1/1) 22


Saturday Night Finals (Begins at 6 p.m. CDT)

125 pounds — #1 Spencer Lee (Iowa) vs. #3 Brandon Courtney (Arizona State)

133 pounds — #1 Daton Fix (Oklahoma State) vs. #2 Roman Bravo-Young (Penn State)

141 pounds — #1 Jaydin Eierman (Iowa) vs. #2 Nick Lee (Penn State)

149 pounds — #1 Sammy Sasson (Ohio State) vs. #2 Austin O’Connor (North Carolina)

157 pounds — #4 Jesse Dellavecchia (Rider) vs. #3 David Carr (Iowa State)

165 pounds — #8 Shane Griffith (Stanford) vs. #3 Jake Wentzel (Pitt)

174 pounds — #1 Michael Kemerer (Iowa) vs. #3 Carter Starocci (Penn State)

184 pounds — #1 Aaron Brooks (Penn State) vs. #2 Trent Hidlay (NC State)

197 pounds — #4 A.J. Ferrari (Oklahoma State) vs. #6 Nino Bonaccorsi (Pitt)

Heavyweight — #1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota) vs. #2 Mason Parris (Michigan)


All-American Matches

125 pounds

3rd – Patrick McKee (Minnesota) dec. Drew Hildebrandt (Central Michigan), 5-3

5th – Taylor LaMont (Utah Valley) dec. Sam Latona (Virginia Tech), 4-1

7th – Killian Cardinale (West Virginia) dec. Eric Barnett (Wisconsin), 12-7

133 pounds

NC State’s Tariq Wilson defeated Rutgers’ Sebastian Rivera for third place at 141 pounds. (John Sachs photo)

3rd – Austin DeSanto (Iowa) dec. Korbin Myers (Virginia Tech), 10-6

5th – Lucas Byrd (Illinois) pinned Michael McGee (Arizona State), 6:17

7th – Chris Cannon (Northwestern) major dec. Louie Hayes (Virginia), 11-3

141 pounds

3rd – Tariq Wilson (NC State) major dec. Sebastian Rivera (Rutgers), 15-5

5th – Dylan Duncan (Illinois) dec. Chad Red (Nebraska), 3-0

7th – Zachary Sherman (North Carolina) dec. Clay Carlson (South Dakota State) 11-4

149 pounds

3rd – Yahya Thomas (Northwestern) dec. Boo Lewallen (Oklahoma State), 5-3

5th – Brock Mauller (Missouri) dec. Kyle Parco (Fresno State), 8-5

7th – Jaden Abas (Stanford) dec. Jonathan Millner (Appalachian State), 5-3

157 pounds

3rd – Ryan Deakin (Northwestern) dec. Jacori Teemer (Arizona State), 1-0

5th – Hayden Hidlay (NC State) major dec. Brayton Lee (Minnesota), 11-2

7th – Kaleb Young (Iowa) dec. Wyatt Sheets (Oklahoma State), 3-2

165 pounds

3rd – Keegan O`Toole (Missouri) dec. Travis Wittlake (Oklahoma State), 4-3

5th – Ethan Smith (Ohio State) dec. Zach Hartman (Bucknell) 7-5 sv

7th – Cameron Amine (Michigan) won by medical forfeit over Anthony Valencia (Arizona State)

174 pounds

3rd – Mikey Labriola (Nebraska) dec. Bernie Truax (Cal Poly) 13-3, . (Dec 8-3)

5th – Logan Massa (Michigan) won by medical forfeit over Demetrius Romero (Utah Valley) 19-3, . (M. For.)

7th – Daniel Bullard (NC State) won by medical forfeit over Jackson Turley (Rutgers) 10-6, . (M. For.)

184 pounds

Northern Iowa’s redshirt freshman Parker Keckeisen (right) beat Rutgers’ true freshman John Poznanski  for third place at 184 pounds. (John Sachs photo)

3rd – Parker Keckeisen (Northern Iowa) dec. John Poznanski (Rutgers), 5-4

5th – Dakota Geer (Oklahoma State) dec. Brit Wilson (Northern Illinois), 6-0

7th – Hunter Bolen (Virginia Tech) dec. Lou Deprez (Binghamton), 6-3

197 pounds

3rd – Myles Amine (Michigan) dec. Jacob Warner (Iowa) 5-3

5th – Rocky Elam (Missouri) dec. Jake Woodley (Oklahoma) 9-3

7th – Michael Beard (Penn State) dec. Stephen Buchanan (Wyoming) 10-8 sv


3rd – Tony Cassioppi (Iowa) dec. Cohlton Schultz (Arizona State), 5-0)

5th – Gannon Gremmel (Iowa State) dec. Trent Hillger (Wisconsin), 4-0)

7th – Greg Kerkvliet (Penn State) major dec. Tate Orndorff (Ohio State) 13-1