Updated Sat, Mar 22, 2014 12:04 pm
Day one of the NCAA championships is in the books. Six Bobcats were eliminated from the championship bracket, but four still remain in the wrestle backs. Jeremy Johnson, 285, Phil Wellington, 197, Cody Walters, 174, and Tywan Claxton, 149, lived to wrestle another day.
Johnson and Wellington were the only Ohio wrestlers to grab a win in the first round of the tournament. Johnson won a 4-1 decision over American’s Blake Herrin and Wellington took down James Cox of Harvard in a 6-5 win.
The shock of Ohio’s day came in the 174 bracket. Walters, the eighth seed, lost 9-6 in his opening match with Northern Iowa’s Cody Caldwell. Ohio’s All-American led by two late in the third period, but a last second takedown forced overtime. Walters defeated Caldwell in the regular season, but the Panthers’ 174-pounder pulled off the upset in the first tiebreaker.
Walters bounced back in a big way in the second round, pinning Pete Randa of NC State.
Claxton came back from his first round defeat, as well, with a 4-3 win against West Virginia’s Mike Morales.
Johnson lost to Mike McClure in his second round matchup of the championship bracket. Michigan State’s heavyweight got the best of Ohio’s redshirt senior in a 2-1 decision.
Wellington suffered the same fate in championship competition, losing his second round match to Cody Reed of Binghamton, 4-0.
Harrison Hightower, 165, and Sparty Chino, 157, went winless on the day.
The Bobcats’ may have lost championship hopes lost on day one, but all four still have the chance to continue their pursuit of All-American dreams on Friday.