Northwestern wins Big Ten dual finale over Indiana

2/23/2013
Northwestern University Sports Information

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Northwestern wrapped up the 2012-13 Big Ten dual schedule with a win Saturday afternoon, downing Indiana 32-6. NU captured eight of 10 bouts and Jason Welch (157), Pierce Harger (165) along with Mike McMullan (Hwt.) all picked up quality wins against ranked opponents.

Saturday's dual began at 125 and IU got on the board first with a close 6-4 overtime decision. That would be the only victory for Indiana until 184 as the Wildcats rattled off wins at the next six weight classes.

True freshman Garrison White tied things up with the 6-0 shutout of Alonzo Shepherd and sophomore Pat Greco kept things rolling for Northwestern with a 6-3 decision over Alex Gregory at 141.

NU then went up 12-3 after Indiana forfeited at 149 and then took a commanding 16-3 advantage following a major decision by Welch, who is ranked No. 2 in the country. The two-time All-American took on IU's 12th-ranked Taylor Walsh and only gave up an escape in the 13-1 Wildcat victory. Welch jumped out to a 6-0 first-period lead with a takedown and four nearfall points, led 10-1 after two and finished the bout with two more back points and riding time. Welch caps his dual career at Northwestern with a 62-5 record, including 16-1 this season. He now has 108 career victories and brings a 26-1 record into the postseason.

The second win over a ranked opponent came at 165 with No. 18 Pierce Harger edging No. 15 Ryan Leblanc, 4-2. After a scoreless first, Harger started the second period down and used a reversal to take the 2-1 lead into the third. Leblanc tied things up at 2-2 with an escape by Harger tallied the winning takedown with 17 seconds left to secure the victory and put NU ahead 19-3.

Sophomore Lee Munster added more bonus points for the 'Cats with the 9-0 shutout of Ryan Konz. Ninth-ranked Munster had the 5-0 lead after the first and never looked back.

Indiana won its final bout of the afternoon at 184 with the narrow 3-0 decision but gave away six more points with another forfeit at 197.

With the dual victory secured, the final bout of the day at heavyweight was one of the more highly-anticipated matches featuring NU's No. 8 Mike McMullan and IU's 14th-ranked Adam Chalfant. These two met earlier in the season in the finals of the Keystone Classic with Chalfant taking the narrow win, but McMullan avenged his loss with Saturday's 6-2 decision. McMullan had the 2-1 lead after the first but Chalfant tied things up at 2-2 with a second-period escape. McMullan started the third period down, escaped shortly after to go up 3-2, scored a takedown with six seconds left and added riding time to take the win and give NU the 32-6 victory.

Northwestern now turns its attention to the postseason, beginning with the 2013 Big Ten Championships, which run March 9-10 in Champaign, Ill.

Results:
125: Joe Duca (IU) dec Dominick Malone (NU), 6-4 SV (3-0 IU)
133: Garrison White (NU) dec Alonzo Shepherd (IU), 6-0 (3-3)
141: Pat Greco (NU) dec Alex Gregory (IU), 6-3 (6-3 NU)
149: Dylan Marriott (NU) won by forfeit (12-3 NU)
157: #2 Jason Welch (NU) maj dec #12 Taylor Walsh (IU), 13-1 (16-3 NU)
165: #18 Pierce Harger (NU) dec #15 Ryan Leblanc (IU), 4-2 (19-3 NU)
174: #9 Lee Munster (NU) maj dec Ryan Konz (IU), 9-0 (23-3 NU)
184: Luke Sheridan (IU) dec Jacob Berkowitz (NU), 3-0 (23-6)
197: Alex Polizzi (NU) won by forfeit (29-6, NU)
Hwt: #8 Mike McMullan (NU) dec #14 Adam Chalfant (IU), 6-2 (32-6)

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