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Illinois Wrestling: Freshman Xavier Montalvo places 2nd at Junior Freestyle Nationals

Illini incoming freshman falls 10-0 in championship bout.

Xavier Montalvo

Xavier Montalvo will have to wait to be a national champion again.

The Illinois incoming freshman lost the 170-pound Junior Freestyle National Championship to Beau Breske (Wisconsin) by a 10-0 technical fall Saturday at the USA Wrestling Nationals in Fargo, N.D.

Breske, ranked No. 13 in the Class of 2013, was a two-time Cadet National double champion (winning both Greco-Roman and Freestyle titles) and placed third earlier this week in Greco-Roman.

Montalvo won the previous bout between the two with a 2-1 decision in the tiebreaker at Preseason Nationals last year. The three-time Illinois state champion from Montini Catholic finished ranked No. 34 in the Class of 2015, and was runner-up in Junior Greco-Roman in 2013.

Montalvo had four shutout technical falls and a 9-3 decision from five matches this week at the national tournament leading up to the championship bout.

"We feel like we got the best prospect in Illinois this year in Xavier Montalvo," Illinois head coach Jim Heffernan said when announcing Montalvo's signing. "He has been very competitive nationally. ... Xavier has really strong work habits and is an extremely tough and talented kid. Xavier will wrestle at 174 or 184 in college."

Montalvo has stated he will not redshirt this winter, and will compete for a spot in the lineup. He will likely compete for the 165-pound spot left by graduating senior Jackson Morse or the 174-pound spot if senior Zac Brunson moves up to the 184-pound weight class to fill the void left by Nikko Reyes transferring to Northern Colorado.


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