Redshirt-sophomore Zac Brunson has been named the Big Ten Wrestler of the Week for the first time in his career, the conference announced Tuesday.
Brunson earned the honor after going 8-0 to help the No. 13 Illini claim victories over Appalachian State (24-15), CSU Bakersfield (23-12) and Grand Canyon (42-6). He also won the Roadrunner Open with a 7-6 decision over No. 6 Bryce Hammond of CSU Bakersfield. It was the second time in three days Brunson defeated Hammond, the first was a 4-1 victory.
The 20th-ranked wrestler by WIN Magazine defeated Forrest Przybysz (Appalachian State), 9-1, and Trey Ronayne (Grand Canyon) by technical fall 17-2.
At the Roadrunner Open, Brunson started with a pin against Ali Ashujery (Oregon State) in 2:10, and major decision wins over Jesus Ambriz (CSU Bakersfield) and Jacob Morrissey (Purdue). In the semifinals, he defeated Keaton Subjeck (Stanford), 7-4, to setup the second meeting with Hammond.
Brunson is 11-0 on the season and is now ranked 10th by WIN Magazine. He is the first Illini wrestler to earn the honor since Jesse Delgado on Feb. 12, 2013. The No. 10 Illinois return to action on Saturday, Nov. 29 at 11 a.m. in Huff Hall against No. 19 Lehigh.
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