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Illinois Wrestling: No. 4 Illini pummel Maryland, 32-3

Delgado returns, Martinez makes history, Black upsets an All-American

Courtesy of Illinois Athletics

Illinois won every match except the final one as they pummeled Maryland, 32-3 in two-time defending NCAA and Big Ten champion Jesse Delgado's return on Friday at Huff Hall.

Delgado missed two months due to injury, and came away with a 3-2 win over Josh Polacek.

The dual got off to a great start for Illinois (10-4, 4-3 Big Ten), as No. 2 Isaiah Martinez and No. 8 Jackson Morse each recorded second-period technical falls for a 10-0 lead. Martinez defeated Lou Mascola, 20-4, at 157, while Morse topped Tyler Manion, 18-2, at 165. The technical fall gave Martinez win number 23 on the season to pass Mike Poeta's 22-0 mark to start a season in 2007-08. It was also his eighth this season, adding to his NCAA Division I lead total.

No. 18 Nikko Reyes had a takedown in each of the first two periods and escape in the second for a 5-0 lead heading into the third. Reyes also amassed enough riding time for a bonus point for a 6-2 win over Tony Gardner at 184. Jeff Koepke earned a reversal in the second and after giving up an escape in the third, held on for a 4-3 decision over Rob Fitzgerald for a 19-0 Illini lead.

Heavyweight Brooks Black mustered an escape in the third to send his bout with No. 13 Spencer Myers to overtime. Black got the ride out in overtime before escaping in the final second of the first tiebreaker for the 2-1 upset against the former All-American.

In the lone bout featuring ranked opponents, No. 2 Zane Richards against No. 16 Geoffrey Alexander. Richards took down Alexander and racked up nearly two minutes of riding time in the first. He then opened a 7-1 lead in the second with two more takedowns before pulling away with a 14-4 major decision.

No. 13 Steven Rodrigues trailed 2-0 after one, but got an escape and a takedown in the second for a 3-2 win over Shyheim Brown at 141. Kyle Langenderfer escaped to start the second for the first points of the 149 bout, then Ben Dorsay scored a last-second takedown for a 3-1 win to prevent the shutout.

The Illini will travel to Purdue on Sunday for their next Big Ten dual.

Meet Results

157No. 2 Isaiah Martinez (ILL) tech fall Lou Mascola (MD), 20-4, 5-0
165: No. 8 Jackson Morse (ILL) tech fall Tyler Manion (MD), 18-2, 10-0
174: No. 8 Zac Brunson (ILL) dec. Josh Snook (MD), 4-1, 13-0
184: No. 18 Nikko Reyes (ILL) dec. Tony Gardner (MD), 6-2, 16-0
197: Jeff Koepke (ILL) dec. Rob Fitzgerald (MD), 4-3, 19-0
HWT: Brooks Black (ILL) dec. No. 13 Spencer Myers, TB1 2-1, 22-0
125No. 1 Jesse Delgado (ILL) dec. Josh Polacek (MD), 3-2, 25-0
133No. 2 Zane Richards (ILL) major dec. No. 16 Geoffrey Alexander (MD), 14-1, 29-0
141: No. 13 Steven Rodrigues (ILL) dec. Shyheim Brown (MD), 3-2, 32-0
149: Ben Dorsay (MD) dec. Kyle Langenderfer (ILL), 3-1, 32-3

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