Rapid Reaction: Wisconsin 3rd after Day 1 of Midlands Championships

The Wisconsin wrestling team trails second-place Northern Iowa by just one point after the opening day of the Ken Kraft Midlands Championships Sunday in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.

Iowa leads the team race by 46 points over second-place UNI. The Hawkeyes have 10 wrestlers in the semifinals and four more still competing in consolation bouts.

Here are a few of the quick headlines you need to catch-up on before wrestling resumes at noon Monday.

Badgers place four in the semifinals 

Four of Wisconsin’s six quarterfinalists punched their tickets to the Monday’s semifinals.

Seth Gross (133 pounds), Tristan Moran (141), Evan Wick (165), and Trent Hillger (285) each won their quarterfinal bouts Sunday night.

Gross bested Colin Valdiviez (Northwestern – Unattached) by major decision 13-2. All three of Gross’ Day 1 victories were bonus-point wins. Gross had a pair of tech falls to go along with his quarterfinal triumph.

The two-seed, Gross will take on three-seed Sebastian Rivera (Northwestern) in the semifinals Monday.

Moran upended Zach Sherman (North Carolina) 5-3 in TB-2.

Second-seeded Moran will go toe-to-toe with three-seed Joshua Heil of Campbell in the semis.

Wick also needed extra time to earn his quarterfinal victory, topping Quentin Perez (Campbell) 4-2 in sudden victory.

The second-seeded Wick will tangle with three-seed David McFadden (Virginia Tech) in the semis.

Hillger won by major decision, 9-1, over Bobby Heald of Army.

Second-seeded Hillger matches up with three-seed Matt Stencel of Central Michigan in the semifinals.

Four UW wrestlers remain in consolation action

Four more UW athletes earned their way into the second day of action and can still finish as high as third in their respective weight classes.

Both Jared Krattiger (174) and Johnny Sebastian (184) dropped their quarterfinal bouts, but will be back in action Monday.

Krattiger fell to Joey Gunther (Illinois) 3-2, while Sebastian dropped his match to Taylor Lujan (Northern Iowa) 7-3.

Eric Barnett (125) and Drew Scharenbrock (157) earned their way into Day 2 by battling their way through consolation action relatively early losses on the championship side.

Barnett battles back 

After dropping a tough match to a seeded opponent in the Round of 64, true freshman Eric Barnett battled all the way back to a Day 2 berth.

Barnett compiled four straight wins, including a victory by decision over teammate Ethan Rotondo, to push his way into the second day of Midlands.

Gross, Moran reach century mark 

Both sixth-year senior Seth Gross and redshirt senior Tristan Moran earned career win No. 100 on Sunday.

Each wrestler reached the milestone with wins on their Round of 16 bouts Sunday afternoon.

Gross’ 100th win came over Joe Heilman (North Carolina).

Victory No. 100 for Moran was his 4-3 triumph over Troy Stanich of Stevens Institute.

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