Preview by Curt Heinrichs
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of 100 battles.” – The Art of War- Sun Tzu
On Friday, the Buckeyes will hit the road for a 3rd time in a week to take on a Big Ten foe, but this time, they’ll be staying in the state of Ohio. Much like the Buckeyes have done in recent years, Northwestern is hosting a home match at the high school of a current upperclassman, in this case Pierce Harger, who is a Cincinnati native. Hosting a home match hundreds of miles from home may seem like an odd move, but I like the idea for recruiting purposes for Northwestern; Cincinnati is known for having excellent athletics and is home to the Greater Catholic League, which excels at academics as well. If Northwestern is trying to plant the flag with a newer fan base, they could certainly do worse than Cincinnati.
Head Coach- Drew Pariano is in his 8th season as the head coach of his alma mater. He’s done an excellent job of building up a tough program. The team is bringing in quite a haul this year with one of the top recruiting classes in the nation. With assistant coaches Jay Borschel and Matt Storniolo, he’s got a staff that is youthful and able to get on the mat and impart some serious wisdom on young wrestlers.
Heavyweight Mike McMullan- last year’s NCAA runner up, McMullan was able to avenge the loss to 2 time defending champ Tony Nelson earlier in the year.
Jason Tsirtsis- The redshirt freshman is currently ranked #4 in the country at 149
Lee Munster- Currently ranked #9 at 174
Ohioans on the roster:
Pierce Harger was never able to find the top of the podium at the Ohio State Wrestling Tournament, but he was a 4 time placer in Division 1. In addition to his mat prowess, Harger must have some serious smarts as he is reported to be pursuing a degree in industrial engineering.
Matches to watch:
All of them if you’re lucky enough to have gotten a ticket early, as it’s reported to be a sellout.
125 lbs- Nick Roberts vs Garrison White- Roberts is looking for his 1st Big Ten win in his career, and this one is obtainable.
133 lbs- Johnni DiJulius vs Dominick Malone- I’d be surprised if JDJ were in the lineup after sitting out this past weekend. With that said, this is a winnable match and may ease him back into the lineup.
174 lbs- Mark Martin vs Lee Munster- A pair wrestlers in the top 25, this bout could help get Martin on a roll if he were able to steal one from the higher ranked Munster.
197 lbs- Nick Heflin vs Alex Polizzi- Heflin dropped his first match of the season last weekend. Polizzi is no slouch and Heflin will have to score more than 2 points to win this one.
Hwt- Nick Tavanello vs Mike McMullan- With his big win to seal the match against Illinois, Tavanello is on a bit of a high. McMullan will be a great litmus test for Tav to see where he ranks in the Big Ten’s Heavyweight hierarchy.
Thanks again for reading and Go Bucks.