Illini Earn Six All-American Honors at University Nationals

Illini redshirt-junior Daryl Thomas took third place at the Asics University National Championships in freestyle on Sunday.
Illini redshirt-junior Daryl Thomas took third place at the Asics University National Championships in freestyle on Sunday.

June 4, 2012

AKRON, Ohio - Illini wrestlers Conrad Polz, Daryl Thomas, Jackson Morse, Logan Arlis, Jordan Blanton and incoming freshman John Fahy placed at the Asics University National Championships freestyle tournament Sunday. Polz (79 KG/174 lbs), Thomas (63 KG/138.75 lbs) and Morse (74 KG/163 lbs) took third place while Arlis (63 KG/138.75 lbs) placed fifth, Fehy (63 KG/138.75 lbs) finished seventh and Blanton (79 KG/174 lbs) placed eighth. The top seven in the seven Olympic weight classes qualify for the University World Team Trials in Colorado Springs, Colo., on August 17.

"We had a great spring and continue to make strides towards our goals next season," associate head coach Mark Perry said. "Our guys will enjoy some downtime until we start camps and then it will be back to work."

Polz took third place at 79 KG/174 lbs, defeating John-Mar Cannon (Buffalo Wrestling) before falling to Josh Asper (Terrapin Wrestling), to fall into the consolation bracket. He beat Dan Yates (Cliff Keen Wrestling) to reach the third-place bout, where he earned a 2-0, 2-0 decision over Jimmy Sheptock (Terrapin Wrestling).

Thomas also finished in third at 63 KG/138.75 lbs, defeating Justin Flamio (SKWC) by a 7-1, 6-0 technical fall, then dropped his only bout to eventual champion Nathan McCormick (Missouri Wrestling) to move Thomas into the consolation bracket. He then moved past teammate Arlis by a 2-1, 1-0 decision to advance to the third place match where he defeated Brandon Nelson (Purdue) 2-6, 7-4, 3-1.

After dropping his first match of the day to Bobby Barnhisel (Navy Mat Club), Morse won his next four bouts to take third place at 74 KG/163 lbs. Morse defeated Mitchell Polkowske (Bear Cave), Nestor Taffer (Brickhouse), Vlad Dombrovskiy (Team Natomas) and pinned Corey Lear (Invictus Wrestling) in 48 seconds to earn the third place finish.

Arlis took fifth place at 63 KG/138.75 lbs, falling to Vince Rodriguez (Patriot Elite Wrestling) by a 2-1, 3-1 decision but battled back to win five matches in wrestlebacks to reach the fifth-place match, where he defeated Rodriguez 2-0, 3-2.

Incoming freshman Fahy finished the tournament with a seventh place finish at 63 KG/138.75 lbs, going 4-2 and defeating Christope Rau (Eastern Michigan), Mike Carlone (Cleveland Wrestling), Camryn Jackson (Cliff Keen Wrestling) and Tyler Scotton (Boston University).

Blanton took eighth at 79 KG/174 lbs, advancing to the quarterfinals but dropping his bout to Jimmy Sheptock (Terrapin Wrestling) to fall into the consolation bracket. Blanton then defeated Tyler Koehn (NWTC) before dropping his last two matches to Dan Yates (Cliff Keen Wrestling) and Todd Porter (Missouri Wrestling).