Ohio State redshirt freshman Sammy Sasso had one of the best weekends of anyone in college wrestling, upending No. 1 Pat Lugo at Iowa, and two nights later avenging an early-season loss to No. 4 Brayton Lee at Minnesota. He was named Wrestler of the Week by both the Big Ten Conference and USA Wrestling after knocking off the pair of top-4 opponents inside their own arenas.
He is Ohio State's second Big Ten Wrestler of the Week this season: Luke Pletcher (141 pounds) split the first weekly honor of the season after defeating then-No. 1 Dom Demas at the Michigan State Open, vaulting Pletcher to the top of the rankings.
Sasso opened the weekend by knocking off Lugo, the country’s top-ranked 149-pounder. After seven minutes of regulation and a sudden victory period, the Buckeye and Hawkeye were knotted up in a 1-1 stalemate. Sasso broke the match open with an escape in the first tiebreaker period, and handed Lugo his first loss of the season by riding him out in the second 30-second period for a 2-1 decision.
He put the bow on his weekend with a second elite defensive performance, fending off fourth-ranked Lee’s flurry of offense and showcasing what may become the next great rivalry in the sport. The pair of freshman phenoms split a pair of 6-4 decisions in 2019, but Sasso came out the 4-2 winner to close out the dual and propel himself up four spots in this week's FloWrestling rankings to No. 2 in the country.
Ohio State returns to dual-meet action Friday, Jan. 31, hosting Maryland at Covelli Center.