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  • Photo: Tony Rotundo

    Photo: Tony Rotundo

    2022 NCAA I All-Americans at the Senior US Open

    2022 NCAA 3rd place finisher Jordan Wood (photo courtesy of Tony Rotundo; WrestlersAreWarriors.com)

    While the wrestlers who finished in the top three at the NCAA Division I Championships automatically qualified for the upcoming 2022 World Team Trials, those slightly lower down the podium will need to earn a spot via The U.S. Open. Of the 80 All-Americans, 15 are entered in this week's event. The following look at those wrestlers and their history in the international style of the sport.

    65 kg

    Cole Matthews (Pittsburgh) Fifth at 141 pounds

    After winning the ACC tournament, Matthews entered the NCAA tournament at 141 pounds as the sixth seed. He went 4-2 in the bracket with wins over Joseph Zargo (Wisconsin), Matt Kazmir (Columbia), Sebastian Rivera (Rutgers) and Real Woods (Stanford), and he finished fifth to become an All-American.

    In addition to his folkstyle success, Matthews has also had some impressive results in freestyle. In 2019, he finished fourth at U23 Nationals. The following year, he dropped down to the Junior level and made the finals at 61 kg before falling against Ridge Lovett.

    70 kg

    Bryce Andonian (Virginia Tech) Third at 149 pounds
    Austin Gomez (Wisconsin) Fourth at 149 pounds
    Sammy Sasso (Ohio State) Fifth at 149 pounds
    Will Lewan (Michigan) Fifth at 157 pounds
    Jacori Teemer (Arizona State) Sixth at 157 pounds

    The 70 kg division is set to feature the most All-Americans from the 2022 college season. The highest placer among the group was Andonian. The Virginia Tech wrestler went 5-1 with his only loss coming against Ridge Lovett. He picked up a pair of victories over Austin Gomez including in the third-place match.

    Last summer was a breakout freestyle season for Andonian. He not only won Junior Nationals, but he also followed that up with a bronze medal at the Junior World Championships. His go-for-broke throwing style meshes well with the freestyle ruleset, and it may lead him to some surprising results at the Open.

    After a dominant performance at the Big Ten tournament, Gomez entered the NCAA tournament as one of the hottest wrestlers in the country. He was given the third seed and made the semifinals before falling against Andonian in a wild match. Gomez bounced back on the backside and finished fourth to be an All-American.

    Gomez has an extensive background from the age-group level. He represented the U.S. at the 2013 Cadet World Championships, and he won a spot on the 2018 Junior World team but dropped out due to injury. Gomez returned to freestyle in 2020 but dropped both of his matches at Senior Nationals.

    As a returning finalist, Sasso was expected to contend for the 149-pound title in 2022. He lost only one match during the regular season, against Yianni Diakomihalis (Cornell) at the CKLV, before the Big Ten tournament. Sasso ended up finishing fifth at the NCAA tournament and picked up wins over Beau Bartlett (Penn State), Kyle Parco (Arizona State) and John Millner (Appalachian State) along the way.

    Sasso won a UWW Junior National title in freestyle back in 2019. He came up short in his bid for the Junior World team that year against Brayton Lee (Minnesota) in the finals. Sasso got some invaluable freestyle experience at the 2020 RTC Cup where he scored victories over veterans Mitch McKee and Kevin Jack.

    After making the Round of 16 in his first trip to the NCAA tournament, Lewan bounced back this year with a fifth-place finish. He won four matches in the bracket with four of those victories coming in sudden victory. Lewan scored takedowns in the overtime period to best Teemer, Kaleb Young (Iowa) and Jarrett Jacques (Missouri).

    One could make the argument that Lewan has had better results in freestyle. He won a gold medal at the 2017 Cadet World Championships. In 2020, he moved up the 70 kg and won U23 Nationals with a victory over Young in the finals.

    Teemer was one of Lewan's sudden victory victims, but he still had a very strong NCAA tournament performance on the frontside and finished sixth. The Arizona State wrestler defeated Hunter Richard (Cornell), Jake Keating (Virginia) and Jared Franek (North Dakota State) to make the semifinals before dropping a major decision against eventual champion Ryan Deakin (Northwestern).

    Before they were rivals on the college mats, Teemer and Lewan were teammates on the 2017 Cadet World team. Teemer earned the spot at 63 kg and brought home a bronze medal. In 2021, he entered both Senior Nationals and U23 Nationals. He finished sixth on the Senior level and brought home the tournament title from the U23 bracket.

    74 kg

    Cam Amine (Michigan) Fourth at 165 pounds

    After finishing seventh at the NCAA tournament in his first season in the lineup, Amine took a step forward this past season. He finished second at the Big Ten tournament and followed that up with a fourth-place finish at the national event. Amine upset Alex Marinelli, who had previously defeated him in the Big Ten finals, to make the semifinals. His only losses in the bracket were against veteran Evan Wick and eventual champion Keegan O'Toole (Missouri).

    While his cousin Myles has had a ton of freestyle success on the international level, he has only dipped his toe into the freestyle waters recently. Amine competed at the both Senior Nationals and U23 Nationals in 2020, but failed to place at either event.

    79 kg

    Evan Wick (Cal Poly) Third at 165 pounds
    Dustin Plott (Oklahoma State) Sixth at 174 pounds

    After a pair of top-four finishes at Wisconsin, Wick transferred to Cal Poly for one final season of college wrestling. It turned out to be his best campaign to date. He won the Pac 12 tournament and finished third at the NCAA tournament. Wick's only loss on the season came against returning champion Shane Griffith (Stanford) in the final seconds of the NCAA semis.

    In 2020, Wick finished fourth at Senior Nationals and won the U23 version of the event. The following year, he made the semifinals of the Olympic Trials before running into Kyle Dake and ended up finishing third. Wick also attempted to qualify for the 2021 World team. He went 2-2 in the challenge tournament with victories over Michael O'Malley and Devin Skatzka.

    Plott won the Big 12 tournament and entered the NCAA tournament as the sixth seed. His seed held up, and he ended up finishing sixth to become an All-American for the first time. Along the way, the Oklahoma State wrestler scored victories over Sal Perrine (Ohio), Mason Kauffman (Northern Illinois), Ethan Smith (Ohio State) and Clay Lautt (North Carolina).

    On the freestyle side, Plott is a three-time placer at Junior level national tournaments. In 2018, he made the finals of the Junior version of The Open, and in 2019 Plott finished third at the both Junior Nationals and the Junior World Team Trials.

    86 kg

    Trent Hidlay (North Carolina State) Fifth at 184 pounds
    Marcus Coleman (Iowa State) Seventh at 184 pounds

    At his first NCAA tournament back in 2021, Hidlay made the finals. He returned this year and finished fifth to once again become an All-American. Both of his losses at the NCAA tournament were in overtime. He lost a 6-4 match in sudden victory against eventual champion Aaron Brooks (Penn State) in the semifinals, and he lost a consolation semifinal match against Parker Keckeisen (Northern Iowa) in rideouts. With two more years of eligibility left, Hidlay is expected to be a title threat for the foreseeable future.

    In 2021, Hidlay had a strong year on the freestyle mats. He made the finals of Senior Nationals and followed that up with a third-place finish at the World Team Trials. Along the way, he scored victories over former NCAA champions Drew Foster and Myles Martin.

    After qualifying for the NCAA tournament four times, Coleman finally broke through this past season to become an All-American. He finished seventh thanks to key victories over Travis Stefanik (Princeton), Dakota Geer (Oklahoma State) and Trey Munoz (Oregon State). The Iowa native has one year remaining and therefore could return to the Cyclones for another run at the podium.

    Per the USA Wrestling database, Coleman's last freestyle event was the 2018 Junior Open. He went 2-2 in the bracket with wins coming over Donald Negus and Oklahoma's Anthony Mantanona.

    125 kg

    Jordan Wood (Lehigh) Third at Heavyweight
    Lucas Davison (Northwestern) Sixth at Heavyweight
    Christian Lance (Nebraska) Eighth at Heavyweight

    After previously losing to Iowa's Anthony Cassioppi three times in college, Wood finally got some revenge as he scored a sudden victory upset in the quarterfinals to become an All-American again. Wood would eventually lose a close match against Cohlton Schultz in the semifinals and battle back for third. The Lehigh product finished his final season with a 27-3 record and his highest placing at the NCAA tournament.

    Wood twice represented the U.S. at age-group World championships. He won a silver medal at the 2014 Cadet World Championships and returned to the World stage on the Junior level in 2016, but failed to medal. Last year, Wood finished second at the Last Chance Qualifier for the Olympic Trials and added a third-place finish at U23 Nationals.

    Davison went 4-3 at the NCAA tournament to finish sixth and become an All-American, but his most impressive accomplishment might have come in a losing effort. In the quarterfinals, he became the first wrestler all season to score a two-point score against reigning Olympic gold medalist Gable Steveson (Minnesota). Davison also scored victories over Sam Schuyler (Iowa State), Matt Stencel (Central Michigan), Gary Traub (Oregon State) and Christian Lance (Nebraska).

    In 2021, Davison made the finals of U23 Nationals but ultimately came up short against Cassioppi in the best-of-three finals. He also entered Senior Nationals and finished seventh.

    After beginning his college career at Fort Hays State, Lance transferred to Nebraska and worked his way all the way up to All-American status. In his final season of eligibility, he went 19-11 on the season and finished eighth at the NCAA tournament. He needed a sudden-victory win over Lewis Fernandes (Cornell) in the bloodround to make it happen.

    Lance placed seventh at the 2020 edition of Senior Nationals. He returned to the tournament once again last year and worked his way up to a fifth-place finish.

    130 kg (Greco)

    Cohlton Schultz (Arizona State) Second at Heavyweight

    It looks like Schultz is the only All-American from the 2022 tournament to enter the Open in Greco. He had an incredible second year in the lineup for Arizona State. Schultz took an undefeated record all the way to the finals where he dropped a 6-2 match against Steveson. His path to the championship match was quite tough as he needed to best Mason Parris (Michigan) and Wood in back-to-back matches.

    Calling Schultz one of the best young American wrestlers in Greco would not be a stretch at all. He made the finals of the Olympic Team Trials after his first year of college wrestling, but ultimately dropped the final series to Adam Coon in straight matches. He returned for the 2021 World Team Trials where he ran through the field on his way to the finals. Schultz did drop the first match of the best-of-three final series against Jacob Mitchell, but he won the next two by a combined 14-0 score to secure the spot.

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