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141 lb. NCAA Championship Preview

By Eric Olanowski, 03/14/17, 7:45AM EDT

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Photo: Tony Rotundo (www.wrestlersarewarriors.com)

Eric Olanowski

Eric Olanowski

Editor-In-Chief

St. Louis, MO - Last year’s NCAA Champion, Dean Heil (Oklahoma States) was rewarded with the no.1 seed after completing the regular season with a 27-0 record.

141 lbs. has to be one of the deepest weight classes in the country. The way I see this playing out, the top-four seeds advance to the semi-finals! 

First round match-up to watch: 

(13) Javier Gasca III (Michigan State) vs. Jimmy Gulibon (Penn State) 

These guys have wrestled three times in their career. The latest match came in the Big Ten semi-finals where Gasca was able to pick up his second win over Gulibon by  hitting a knee-tap dump and picking up the fall.  

Can we just skip to the second round? 

Understanding #MarchMatness and all of the upsets that go on, there is no possible way that all of these match-ups stay true, but here are some that we might get to see! 

(9) Colton McCrystal (Nebraska) vs. (8) Jaydin Eierman (Missouri) 

(5) Anthony Ashnault (Rutgers) vs. Luke Pletcher (Ohio State) 

(11) Randy Cruz (Lehigh) vs. (6) George DiCamillo (Virginia) 

(10) Bryce Meredith (Wyoming) vs. (7) Joey Ward (North Carolina)

Looking to the quarters: 

Ashnault (27-3) has been scratching to get a rematch with the two individuals who have knocked him off this season, Kevin Jack (2-0 and 4-3) and Matt Kolodzik (4-3). With Jack being the number-two seed, Ashnault will not have the opportunity to wrestle him until the finals, but he could potentially have the opportunity to wrestle Kolodzik (Princeton) in the quarter-finals if Matt is able to get through either Jimmy Gulibon (Penn State) or Javier Gasca (Michigan State) in round two.

Dating back to the 2015 NCAA Championships, Ashnault has yet to defeat someone who was seeded higher than him. In the past two NCAA Championships, Ashnault has had an opportunity to knock off four guys who were seeded higher than him, #1 Dean Heil (Oklahoma State), #2 Mitchell Port (Edinboro), #2 Joey McKenna (Stanford) and #3 Lavion Mayes (Missouri) but has failed in each attempt. With Kolodzik being the three seed and Ashnault being the five seed, I’m sticking with history and saying Matt Kolodzik df. Anthony Ashnault to make it to the 141 lb. semi-finals to take on 2016 NCAA Champion, Dean Heil (Oklahoma State) 

Looking for a ten seed or greater to make a run?

A man that is familiar with March runs is Bryce Meredith. Last year’s NCAA finalist, Meredith came into New York with three losses and was disrespected with the No.14 seed. This season, Meredith comes in with six losses, four of which came to top-four guys and gets the 10 seed.

In round two, Meredith will have the opportunity to avenge one of his six losses when he’ll take on Joey Ward of (North Carolina). Ward was victorious in a 9-6 overtime bout. 

The winner of that round of sixteen match-up will most likely meet the number-two seed from North Carolina State, Kevin Jack. Jack, who is coming off his second ACC title, is riding a twenty-seven match win streak.

Jack defeated Ward earlier this season, 10-4. 

Semi-final match-ups: 

(1) Dean Heil (Okla State) vs. (4) Matt Kolodzik (Princeton)

(2) Kevin Jack (North Carolina State) vs. (3) Joey McKenna (Stanford)