PITTSBURGH — The Bobcats will be advancing through the consolation rounds after the first session on Thursday of the NCAA National Championships.
Redshirt sophomore Mario Guillen was the first to fall for the Bobcats, when he was defeated by No. 10 Roman Bravo-Young in the 133-weight class. Guillen performed better than expected, however. He held an early 2-1 lead before losing the lead, and eventually losing 8-2.
He will take on No. 26 Codi Russel of Appalachian State in the first round of the consolation bracket.
Next to lose was redshirt junior Zac Carson in the 157- weight class. He looked outmatched against Ohio State’s Ke-Shawn Hayes when he was lost 7-1, only scoring in the final period. Carson will look forward to his next match against No. 27 Dan Reed from Colorado.
Heavyweight senior Zack Parker was light work for Gable Steveson, whose only loss of the season was to No. 2 Anthony Cassar. Parker, who gave up four points in the first period, and just four more were needed for Steveson to get the technical fall in the second period. The senior will try to continue his career when he faces off against Jacob Aven of Purdue later Thursday night.
The first session of the day wasn’t all bad, though.
Senior Cam Kelly defeated Austin Headlee of North Carolina with a last-second takedown. That takedown earned him a spot in the round of 16 where he will face Jaydin Eierman of Missouri.
The matchup with Eierman has been a long time coming for Kelly, since the two were the best in the Mid-American Conference at 141 pounds, but never met. Eierman won the MAC, while Kelly battled through the consolation to earn third.
The Bobcats earned one point in the first session, which positions them at 40th in the team rankings. They will continue wrestling Thursday night at 7 pm on ESPN.