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Wrestling notebook: Potential rematches abound for Iowa in National Duals

BY JORDAN HANSEN | FEBRUARY 19, 2015 5:00 AM

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There’s a good chance that Iowa is going to see a few very familiar faces this weekend in the National Duals.

Three teams that Iowa has already faced and beat this year — Ohio State, Minnesota and Illinois — are in the eight-team bracket and there’s a good chance Iowa will face at least two of those teams, most likely the Gophers and the Buckeyes.

However, Iowa head coach Tom Brands isn’t sure that gives Iowa an edge over any of those teams.

“I don’t know if it gives us any advantage other than having our guys ready to go,” Brands said. “As a competitor, creating your edge every day and getting better – that’s how you give yourself the best chance to win and get your hand raised.”

With Ohio State and Minnesota being two of Iowa’s closest matches this year, there are certainly a couple wrestlers (see: Cory Clark) who would like another crack at certain wrestlers (see: Minnesota’s Chris Dardanes) before Big Ten’s come around.

That said, Iowa’s Thomas Gilman really doesn’t think it matters who he’s facing.

“I don’t care about them, they step on the mat, that’s fine,” Gilman said. “I’ll take ‘em on, I’ll beat them, but I don’t worry about them right now.”

Mike Evans echoed Gilman, even though he will likely face Minnesota’s Logan Storley for the sixth time, with Storley owning a 3-2 advantage over Iowa’s 174-pounder.

“Nothing’s going to change if we wrestle Minnesota,” Evans said. “I’m just going to have to tuck my chin and head out there with a full head of steam.”

Grothus ‘pigeonholed’

A week ago, it seemed as if Brody Grothus would certify at 141-pounds for the postseason, but it seems like that didn’t exactly happen.

“It was not a done deal because there was a lot of work that had to go into that,” Brands said. “I said that Brody Grothus can help us in a bunch of different places, 141, mathematically, it could have happened. 49, he can help us with depth, 57 he can help us with depth.

“Brody Grothus is very important to this program.”

Even if he would have certified at 141, it’s doubtful that he would have upended Dziewa for his spot.
For now, it looks like his postseason will likely be on the bench, barring an injury at 149 or 157.

“I kind of chuckled with him, told him that he basically pigeonholed himself,” Brands said.

“Anyways, it’s good. It’s all good there — he’s a good team player.”

Evans nearing triple digits

Mike Evans, whose career record currently stands at 98-23, could get to the 100 win mark in Iowa’s semi-final dual, assuming he wins against Chattanooga’s Sean Mappes.

If he does win, he would become just the 41st wrestler in Iowa history to reach that win total.

“That would be an awesome thing, man. I didn’t even know that — I’d love to do that for our fans,” Evans said. “So I plan on doing it.”

Follow @JordyHansen on Twitter for news, updates, and analysis about the Iowa wrestling team.


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