2024 NCAAs Preview • 133 Pounds


Second-Round Notes

  • No. 13 seed Kurt Phipps (Bucknell) and No. 4 Dylan Shawver (Rutgers) were knotted at zero going into the second. Phipps with a full rideout in the second period. Third period started in the neutral position. With less than a minute remaining in the match, Shawver initiated a scramble that looked like possible points for each wrestlers. Shawver held on for the 1-0 victory.
  • Top-seed Daton Fix (Oklahoma State) eeked out a 5-4 win over No. 16 Nic Bouzakis (Ohio State). After a long challenge delay shortly after the start of the match, the score remained 0-0. Fix scored on an inside trip to go up by three. A Bouzakis takedown brought the score to 5-4 midway through the third period. Fix held off an array of attacks as the clock ran out.
  • No. 8 Evan Frost (Iowa State) escaped at the start of the second for a 1-0 lead over No. 24 Julian Chlebove that remained through the end of the period. Frost was on top to start the third. Chlebove created a cradle counter, Frost broke the lock and rolled through for no points. Frost hits a double that lands Chlebove on his backside, then powers through for three with seconds remaining on the clock.
  • No. 7 Nasir Bailey (Little Rock) and No. 23 Marlon Yarbrough (Virginia) were in a tight match throughout that saw three lead changes, before Bailey took Yarbrough feet to back for six an 11-7 win to move on.
  • No. 3 Kai Orine (NC State) pulled out a stingy 2-0 victory over No. 14 Jacob Van Dee (Nebraska). After a 0-0 first period. Orine got the ride out in the second and an escape in the third for the win.

First-Round Notes

  • Arizona State’s Julian Chlebove, seeded No. 24, upset Northern Colorado’s No. 9 Dominick Serrano, 4-1. The Sun Devil scored the winning takedown in the third period after Serrano had tied the match with an escape in the final frame.
  • Campbell’s Domenic Zaccone, seeded No. 22, also scored a 4-1 victory to upset Cal Poly’s Zeth Romney. Zaccone scored the takedown with 11 seconds left. With the victory, Zaccone earned the right to face defending national champ Vito Arujau of Cornell in the second round. Arujau, seeded No. 6, scored a 17-4 major decision over Lock Haven’s Gable Strickland.
  • Virginia’s Marlon Yarbrough, seeded No. 23, stunned returning All-American Aaron Nagao of Penn State, 13-5. The Cavalier scored four takedowns, including two in the first frame, and added 2:34 riding time advantage. Nagao, who earned his AA honor last season with Minnesota, was seeded No. 11, earned three escapes and a reversal with 13 second left for his only points.


The following is a look at WIN’s Top-10 rated wrestlers, plus other notable wrestlers, at 133 pounds before the conference/NCAA qualifying tournaments. Go to WIN-Magazine.com for an updated NCAA preview after the qualifiers.

1. Vito Arujau, Cornell, Sr., 

Syosset, N.Y.

Note: Won a World title in freestyle last summer at 61k but is expected to drop down to 57k for Olympic Trials.

Season Record/Career Record: 10-1/84-8

NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals — first in 2019 then missed two NCAAs because of pandemic impact — with a career record of 15-3.

Regular-season Notes: Limited himself to 11 matches, including two wins over Penn’s Michael Colaiocco.

2. Daton Fix, Oklahoma State, Sr., Sand Springs, Okla.

Note: Redshirted in 2018, then also took an Olympic redshirt in 2020 after making 2019 World team in freestyle.

Season Record/Career Record: 13-0/115-6

NCAA Resume: Fifth Nationals, first in 2019, with a career record of 16-5. Finished second three in three NCAAs (2019, 2021 and 2022) before settling for fourth last March.

Regular-season Notes: Scored bonus-point wins in nine matches, including a fall against Bucknell’s Kurt Phipps and major decision vs. NC State’s Kai Orine.

3. Ryan Crookham, Lehigh, RSFr., 

Hellertown, Pa.

Note: Was a three-time PIAA state champ for Saucon Valley

Season Record/Career Record: 15-0/15-0

NCAA Resume: First Nationals

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Vito Arujau, 8-4, in Journeyman Classic on Nov. 12.

4. Kai Orine, NC State, Jr.,

Imperial, Mo.

Note: Former three-time state champ from Seckman High.

Season Record/Career Record: 13-2/54-18

NCAA Resume: Third straight Nationals with a career record of 5-5. Finished eighth last March after reaching R16 in 2022.

Regular-season Notes: Earned major decision vs. ISU’s Evan Frost and defeated Virginia Tech AA Sam Latona, 2-1, on Feb. 23.

5. Dylan Ragusin, Michigan, Jr., Elk Grove Village, Ill.

Note: Wrestled at 125 in 2021 before competing at 133 last three seasons.

Season Record/Career Record: 19-1/68-24

NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals with a career record of 5-6. Reached R12 in 2022 and R16 last March.

Regular-season Notes: Had considered taking an Olympic redshirt but returned to lineup after winning Midlands. Pinned Penn State’s Aaron Nagao on Jan.19.

6. Nasir Bailey, Little Rock, Fr., Park Forest, Ill.

Note: Was a Fargo, Ironman, and Illinois state champ had originally committed to North Carolina.

Season Record/Career Record: 22-2/22-2

NCAA Resume: First Nationals

Regular-season Notes: 17 bonus-point wins, including a 15-0 TF over Iowa State’s Evan Frost on Dec. 18.

7. Dylan Shawver, 

Rutgers, Jr., 

Lorain, Ohio

Note: Compiled a 12-5 mark at 125 in 2023 before suffering an injury. 

Season Record/Career Record: 19-5/55-24

NCAA Resume: Second Nationals, first since 2022 when he went 2-2 at 125 pounds.

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Ohio State’s Nic Bouzakis and Penn State’s Aaron Nagao in consecutive dual matches.

8. Aaron Nagao, Penn State, So., 

La Habra, Calif.

Note: Transferred from Minnesota after last season.

Season Record/Career Record: 10-4/32-10

NCAA Resume: Second Nationals after claiming fifth for Minnesota in 2023, when he went 5-2.

Regular-season Notes: Earned an 11-0 major decision vs. Iowa’s Cullen Schriever on Feb. 9/

9. Evan Frost, Iowa State, RSFr., Metairie, La.

Note: Moved to Iowa from Louisiana as a senior and won a 2022 state title for West Des Moines Dowling.

Season Record/Career Record:15-3/15-3

NCAA Resume: First Nationals

Regular-season Notes: Earned nine bonus-point wins, including a TF and MD over Northern Iowa’s Julian Farber.

10. Michael Colaiocco, Penn, Sr., Sparta, N.J.

Note: Competed for PRTC in 2021 when Ivy League did not compete because of pandemic.

Season Record/Career Record: 15-8/84-26

NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals, first in the cancelled 2020 NCAAs, with a career record of 3-4. Reached R16 last March.

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Virginia Tech AA Sam Latona, 5-4, at the Midlands.

Others to Watch

• Ohio State’s redshirt freshman Nic Bouzakis, a native of Tampa, Fla., compiled a 20-7 regular-season mark. That included a 51-second fall against NC State’s Kai Orine on Dec. 19 and 13-7 win over Penn State’s Aaron Nagao on Feb. 2. He also earned a bronze medal at U20 Worlds in freestyle last summer.

• Virginia Tech junior Sam Latona, a four-time national qualifier, who placed sixth in 2021 and seventh last March, was 16-6 before the ACCs with wins over Rutgers’ Dylan Shawver and Ohio State’s Nic Bouzakis.

• Nebraska’s redshirt freshman Jacob Van Dee was 18-6 before the Big Tens, which included a 3-2 decision over Michigan’s Dylan Ragusin. n

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