Ohio State came out swinging and never looked back.
Malik Heinselman came out swinging in the first match of the afternoon as the Buckeyes hosted Maryland, scoring his first takedown of Zach Spence just seconds into the bout. Heinselman never let Spence up, and after piling on the back points in period one, he finished the match with a tech fall just 32 seconds into the second period.
Ohio State won nine of the afternoon's 10 matches, winning the meet 39-4 and improving to 6-2 in dual meet competition. The Buckeyes are ranked No. 6 in the country by the NWCA Division I Coaches Poll.
Heinselman's hot start was reminiscent of the early aggression he showed in Friday night's upset of No. 10 Drake Ayala of Iowa, and set the tone for the way Ohio State would abuse the Terrapins all afternoon. While Dylan Koontz struggled against fellow unranked wrestler King Sandoval at 133, the Buckeyes would win four of the meet's first five bouts with a pair of pins and a pair of tech falls – the home team led 22-4 after intermission.
The Buckeyes were favored by rankings in eight matches, with the 133- and 157- pound bouts featuring unranked wrestlers on both sides of the ledger. Unlike Koontz, however, Ohio State's 157-pounder Jashon Hubbard came out shooting and it paid off big, as he cradled Conner Decker for the pin 41 seconds into the match.
157 | Cradles only in Covelli today Hubbard is your winner by fall at 0:41. pic.twitter.com/2WMTVBiRNX— Ohio State Wrestling (@wrestlingbucks) January 23, 2022
It was Dylan D'Emilio who notched the day’s first pin, taking down Will Berkowitz four seconds into the 141-pound match and then putting the Terrapin on his back to finish the bout at 1:35. D'Emilio wrestled a tough fight against Iowa's Jaydin Eierman Friday night, holding the No. 2 man in the country to a 4-0 decision.
141 | And only 1:35 for the fall— Ohio State Wrestling (@wrestlingbucks) January 23, 2022
D'Emilio is your winner by fall. pic.twitter.com/VfwvGA5sJu
Sammy Sasso made Buckeye fans sweat in his battle with No. 10 Max Murin of Iowa, going down to the wire against the Hawkeye, but he had no such trouble against Michael North of Maryland. Sasso brutalized the Terrapin redshirt sophomore on top with a punishing series of tilts that led to a 24-5 technical fall.
After intermission it was more of the same for the Buckeyes, as Carson Kharchla added another tech fall at 165, taking Gaven Bell down by a score of 18-3. Kharchla upset No. 1 Alex Marinelli Friday night, and should find himself moving well up the rankings next week.
165 | Kharchla closes a big weekend with a tech over Bell 18-3 at 3:11 pic.twitter.com/TgbRrV0CHe— Ohio State Wrestling (@wrestlingbucks) January 23, 2022
Fritz Schierl, Kaleb Romero, Gavin Hoffman and Tate Orndorff rounded out the meet with a series of strong decisions. Romero's win came over No. 12 Kyle Cochran and Orndorff defeated No. 31 Zach Schrader in the only ranked vs. ranked matches of the night.
Schierl got the call as a longtime contributor to the team, stepping in for Ethan Smith at 174 pounds and putting on a great show in front of a supportive home crowd. Putting his Greco-Roman strengths on display, he threw Maryland's Dominic Solis for a four-point move that was a tenth of a swipe away from being a six-point move.
174 | Excuse us while we play this on repeat. pic.twitter.com/v4cQmRVMIc— Ohio State Wrestling (@wrestlingbucks) January 23, 2022
Outside of the Koontz match it was pure dominance by the home team, as one might have expected based on the talent disparity between the two programs. After dropping a pair of conference dual-meet losses to national title contenders Michigan and Iowa, it was a great reminder of just how much talent Ohio State brings to the table and why they still have their sights on a team trophy in March.
Hubbard and Romero both wrestled extra matches after the dual meet was over, with Hubbard notching an 8-3 decision over Maryland's Lucas Cordio and Romero pinning Chase Mielnik. Both cases provided valuable data points for the Buckeye wrestlers with regard to the various criteria and ratings for NCAA Tournament selections heading into the late season.
|125||No. 17 Malik Heinselman, victory by TECHNICAL FALL over Zach Spence (15-0)||5||0|
|133||King Sandoval, major decision over Dylan Koontz (10-0)||5||4|
|141||No. 23 Dylan D'Emilio, victory by FALL over Will Berkowitz (1:35)||11||4|
|149||No. 2 Sammy Sasso, victory by TECHNICAL FALL over Michael North (24-5)||16||4|
|157||Jashon Hubbard, victory by FALL over Conner Decker (0:41)||22||4|
|165||No. 7 Carson Kharchla, victory by TECHNICAL FALL over Gaven Bell (18-3)||27||4|
|174||Fritz Schierl, decision over Dominic Solis (5-2)||30||4|
|184||No. 7 Kaleb Romero, decision over No. 12 Kyle Cochran (6-2)||33||4|
|197||No. 20 Gavin Hoffman, decision over Kevin Makosy (10-3)||36||4|
|HWT||No. 12 Tate Orndorff, decision over No. 31 Zach Schrader (4-1)||39||4|
Up Next: Ohio State once again hits the road, traveling to State College, Penn., to face the top-ranked Penn State Nittany Lions, Friday, Feb. 4, at 7 p.m., on Big Ten Network.