Wisconsin earns road win at Northwestern

1/26/2014
University of Wisconsin Sports Information

EVANSON, Ill. -- The 19th-ranked Badgers (11-4 overall, 5-1 Big Ten) notched their fourth victory over a ranked opponent Sunday afternoon by defeating No. 16 Northwestern (6-5, 1-5) 23-15.

Wisconsin defeated Indiana, 23-12, Friday night to pick up a pair of conference road victories over the weekend.

"Those were two big wins on the road," said UW assistant coach Trevor Brandvold. "We are getting better every match and that has been good to see."

No. 10 Ryan Taylor and No. 6 Tyler Graff once again got the Badgers off to a strong start and each recorded bonus-point victories. Taylor won by major decision, 21-8, over Garrison White at 125 lbs., while Graff recorded a four-point technical fall over Dominick Malone in 1:13. Taylor's 21 points were the second-highest mark he has recorded in a match this season while Graff earned his eighth technical fall victory of the year.

Jesse Thielke then recorded the biggest win for the Badgers on the day. He battled in back-and-forth fashion with Pasquale Greco at 141 lbs., and ultimately came away with the victory, 5-4. Greco was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct, resulting in the loss of a point for the Wildcats and Thielke's win gave the Badgers a commanding 11-0 lead.

"Jesse Thielke had a big win for us today," continued Brandvold. "We are getting better every time we step on the mat."

After TJ Ruschell fell by major decision at 149 lbs., to Northwestern's Jason Tsirtsis by a score of 13-2, No. 7 Isaac Jordan grabbed his 21st win of the season with a 6-3 decision over Ben Sullivan at 157 lbs. Jordan's win comes two days after recording his first victory over a top-5 opponent this season.

Following Frank Cousins' 4-0 loss to No. 9 Pierce Harger at 165 lbs., Scott Liegel turned in an impressive performance by pinning Robert Coukos in 1:44. The fall was Liegel's third of the season and it gave the Badgers a 20-7 lead.

Senior Jackson Hein recorded UW's last victory of the day by defeating Jacob Berkowitz by decision, 8-3, at 184 lbs. With the win, Hein improves to 10-3 on the season.

Northwestern then rattled off a pair of wins with ranked wrestlers to close out the match. At 197 lbs., No. 17 Alex Polizzi pinned Timmy McCall in 5:57 while No. 4 Michael McMullan won by decision over No. 10 Connor Medbery, 4-3.

"Connor (Medbery) had a great heavyweight match," concluded Brandvold. "That kid was in the national finals last year and Connor lost by a point. I like that. Having Jackson (Hein) back was big also. Overall it was a good weekend."

The Badgers return home next Sunday when to host North Dakota State. The match is scheduled for a 1 p.m. start at the UW Field House.

Results:
125 #10 Ryan Taylor (WIS)maj. dec. Garrison White (NU) 21-8. 4 0
133 #6 Tyler Graff (WIS) tech fall Dominick Malone (NU) 1:13 24-9 8 0
141 Jesse Thielke (WIS) dec. decision Pat Greco (NU), 5-4 11 0
149 #4 Jason Tsirtsis (NU) maj. dec. TJ Ruschell (WIS) 13-2 11 3
157 #7 Isaac Jordan (WIS) dec. Benjamin Sullivan (NU) 6-3 14 3
165 #9 Pierce Harger (NU) dec. Frank Cousins Jr. (WIS) 4-0 14 6
174 Scott Liegel (WIS) fall Robert Coukos (NU), 1:44 20 6
184 Jackson Hein (WIS) dec. Jacob Berkowitz (NU) 8-3 23 6
197 #17 Alex Polizzi (NU) fall Timmy McCall (WIS) 5:57 23 12
HWT #4 Mike McMullan (NU) dec. #10 Connor Medbery (WIS) 4-3 23 15

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