Freshman wrestler Clark beats No. 2 Delgado in UNI Open


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The Iowa wrestling team has the nation’s best 125-pound wrestler in Matt McDonough. And after UNI Open in Cedar Falls, it appears the Hawkeyes might have two of the best.

True freshman Cory Clark won the Dec. 8 tournament, beating Illinois’ Jesse Delgado — ranked No. 2 in the nation by Intermat — in the finals, 6-1. Delgado gave McDonough his only loss last season, an 11-7 overtime upset in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

The win was the second eye-popping result of the season for Clark. The Pleasant Hill, Iowa, native led McDonough with five seconds remaining in Iowa’s pre-season wrestle-offs before a reversal gave the two-time NCAA champion a win.

Clark will likely redshirt this season behind McDonough.

He wasn’t the only Hawkeye to have success at the tournament. Fellow true freshman Thomas Gilman placed third at 125 pounds after falling to Delgado in the semifinals.

Redshirt freshman Kris Klapprodt lost his first match at 174 pounds, then won six straight to finish third. At 184 pounds, true freshman Sammy Brooks reached the tournament finals before falling, 7-4, to Northern Iowa’s Ryan Loder, a returning NCAA qualifier. True freshman Alex Meyer placed fifth at the weight.

Tomas Lira, who lost the starting 197-pound spot to freshman Nathan Burak, wrestled well. He lost in the tournament semifinals but bounced back to finish in third place.

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