Illini Win Seven Titles at Loras Open
Nov. 3, 2012
DUBUQUE, Iowa -- Seven University of Illinois wrestlers won titles at the Loras Open on Saturday with five others placing in the top four in their respective weight classes. The Illini ranked up 14 pins and seven technical falls during the season opening tournament.
Redshirt-freshman Dominic Olivieri took the title at 125 pounds, senior Daryl Thomas placed first at 133, redshirt-freshman Steven Rodrigues earned the top spot at 141, and junior Tony Dallago took the 184 title.
"I think the guys wrestled hard," head coach Jim Heffernan said. "Some guys like Olivieri showed a lot of improvement and guys scored a bunch of bonus points, which is something we need to continue as the year progresses. Overall it was a good start for an early season tournament."
Olivieri won all five matches by decisions, while Thomas scored bonus points in three of his five matches including a pin at the one minute mark in to reach the semifinals. Rodrigues posted four major decisions en route to his title while Dallago lead the team with four pins including the fastest of the day in 23 seconds.
Along with the six placewinners in the gold bracket, all five earned top four finishes in the silver bracket. Three freshmen placed first in the silver bracket including Zane Richards (133), John Fahy (149) and Zac Brunson (157). Jake Kaminsky finished second at 157 while Benjamin Soumar took home fourth place at 133.
Three other All-Americans from the Illini squad traveled to Washington, D.C. to compete at the NWCA All-Star Classic. B.J. Futrell (141) and Jordan Blanton (174) competed in the Classic for the second consecutive year while Jesse Delgado traveled to the event for the first time. Delgado fell to Penn State's Nico Megaludis 4-3, Futrell was defeated by Kendric Maple of Oklahoma 6-2, and Blanton was ousted by Josh Asper of Maryland 3-1 in SV1.
The Fighting Illini will travel to Ames Iowa, next Saturday, Nov. 10 to compete in the Harold Nichols Cyclone Open.