Dutton, Grajales Secure All-America Honors at NCAA Championships
Steve Dutton

March 22, 2014

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Site: Oklahoma City, Okla. (Chesapeake Energy Arena)
Event: NCAA Championships (Day 2 of 3)
U-M Team Standing: 17th Place of 72 Teams (29.5 points) after Day 2
Next U-M Event: Saturday, March 22 -- at NCAA Championships - Day 3 (Oklahoma City, Okla.), 10 a.m. CDT

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. -- Senior/junior Steve Dutton (Miller Place, N.Y./Rocky Point HS) and fifth-year senior Eric Grajales (Brandon, Fla./Brandon HS) of the University of Michigan wrestling team locked up All-America honors with back-to-back wins in the evening Round of 12 at the NCAA Championships on Friday (March 21) at the Chesapeake Energy Center. The Wolverines sit in 17th place (29.5 points) in the team standings.

The Wolverine duo earned the 175th and 176th All-America citations in program history and 43rd and 44th under head coach Joe McFarland's tenure. Michigan has boasted at least one All-American in 21 of the last 23 seasons.

Dutton, seeded 13th at 141 pounds, will wrestle for seventh place tomorrow (Saturday, March 22) after posting a 3-1 record on the day to secure the first All-America distinction of his career. Squaring off against Harvard's 10th-seeded Todd Preston in the Round of 12, Dutton used a first-period takedown to claim a 2-1 decision. He struck on a high crotch with a minute remaining in the opening frame and rode out the remainder of the period. Preston rode out the second to gain riding-time advantage but could not score in the third as Dutton hung on to win. The Wolverine wrestler lost his subsequent bout to Northern Iowa's 12th-seeded Joey Lazor to drop into the seventh-place contest.

Dutton picked up a pair of major decisions in the morning session, cruising to a 13-0 win over North Carolina State's Sam Speno after claiming an 8-0 victory over Oklahoma's Nick Lester in his first wrestleback contest. He scored on a first-period counter attack against the Sooner wrestler before breaking it open in the third, earning a late reversal and tilting him for three points to claim the bonus point after riding time.

Grajales, seeded ninth at 149 pounds, bounced back from a heartbreaker loss in the quarterfinals with two wins in the evening wrestlebacks, including a 4-1 decision over Cornell's third-seeded Chris Villalonga in the Round of 12. Grajales scored on a throw by out a flurry on the edge midway through the first period, just keeping his toes in bounds for the takedown. He rode for most of the remainder of the period then all of the second to accumulate 3:13 in time advantage. Grajales rallied to defeat Okahoma's fourth-seeded Kendrick Maple, 5-4, in his next consolation match, riding out the second period before scoring on a low single midway through the third and riding out the match to earn 1:21 time advantage.

Grajales dropped a controversial match in the quarterfinals, falling to Missouri's top-seeded Drake Houdashelt, 3-1, after a couple a tough officiating calls. Houdashelt scored on a first-period double leg on the edge of the mat, and Grajales escaped late in the frame but the officials reviewed it, determined that Grajales' finger was in the headgear and waved it off, instead awarding the Tiger a penalty point. Grajales rode out the second period and escaped quickly in the third before going on the attack, nearly scoring out of a late flurry. Michigan's coaches tried to challenge for a possible takedown, but the officials would not allow it.

Freshman Adam Coon (Fowlerville, Mich./Fowlerville HS), seeded fourth at heavyweight, was eliminated from the competition after suffering a pair of overtime losses, including a 3-1 sudden-victory decisions to Ohio's 10th-seeded Jeremy Johnson in the evening Round of 12. The wrestlers traded escapes in regulation, and Coon avoided a pair of Ohio shots near the end of the third period but not the third attempt as Johnson finish on a single midway through the extra frame. Coon also dropped a 3-2 tiebreaker decision to Iowa's fifth-seeded Bobby Telford in the quarterfinals. The Wolverine wrestler rode Telford for 13 seconds before the Hawkeye escaped in the second round of tiebreakers but could not get away -- although having a reversal stalemated a second prior to coming around top -- to suffer his first loss in three season meetings against Telford.

Sophomore Rossi Bruno (Brandon, Fla./Brandon HS) also lost in the evening session's Round of 12, falling to Oklahoma's 13th-seeded Cody Brewer, 13-2, at 133 pounds. Bruno gave up an early five points off a double leg and immediate three-point leg turk and could never rally a comeback. The Wolverine earned a pair of wrestleback wins in the morning sessions, including a second-period fall against Tennessee Chattanooga's 10th-seeded Nick Soto, shooting in deep on a single and stacking him up at the 4:46 mark.

The Wolverines lost three wrestlers in the morning wrestleback round as sophomore/freshman Conor Youtsey (Parma, Mich./Mason HS), fifth-year senior Dan Yates (Hesperia, Mich./Hesperia HS) and freshman Domenic Abounader (Gates Mills, Ohio/St. Edward HS) all suffered their second losses in their first morning wrestleback match.

The NCAA Championships will resume tomorrow (Saturday, March 22) with the fifth session starting at 10 a.m. CDT at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Okla. The morning session will feature third-, fifth- and seventh-place matches. The finals will kick off at 7 p.m. CDT and will be televised live on ESPN.

Top-20 Teams (After Day 2)

 1. Penn State       91
 2. Minnesota        90.5
 3. Oklahoma State   87.5
 4. Iowa             67
 5. Ohio State       52
 6. Edinboro         48.5
 7. Cornell          46.5
 8. Virginia Tech    45.5
 9. Oklahoma         45
10. Illinois         37
    Iowa State       35.5
    Missouri         35.5
    Northwestern     35.5
    Northern Iowa    35.5
15. Wisconsin        35
16. Nebraska         32.5
17. MICHIGAN         29.5
18. Lehigh           28.5
19. Maryland         21
20. NC State         20

U-M Results (Day 2)
Numbers listed are tournament seedings

125 -- Conor Youtsey
Consolations - dec. by #16 Joey Dance (Virginia Tech), 10-6
Eliminated with a 1-2 record

133 -- Rossi Bruno
Consolations - dec. Devon Lotito (Cal Poly), 4-1
Consolations - pinned #10 Nick Soto (Tennessee Chattanooga), 4:46
Consolations - major dec. by #13 Cody Brewer (Oklahoma), 13-2
Eliminated with a 3-2 record

141 -- #13 Steve Dutton
Consolations - major dec. Nick Lester (Oklahoma), 8-0
Consolations - major dec. Sam Speno (North Carolina State), 13-0
Consolations - dec. #10 Todd Preston (Harvard), 2-1
Consolations - pinned by #11 Joey Lazor (Northern Iowa), 3:3:27
Seventh Place - vs. #12 Richard Durso (Franklin & Marshall)

149 -- #9 Eric Grajales
Quarterfinals - dec. by #1 Drake Houdashelt (Missouri), 3-1
Consolations - dec. #3 Chris Villalonga (Cornell), 4-1
Consolations - dec. #4 Kendrick Maple (Oklahoma), 5-4
Consolations - vs. #15 Mitch Minotti (Lehigh)

165 -- #13 Dan Yates
Consolations - major dec. by Chris Moon (Virginia Tech), 13-1
Eliminated with a 1-2 record

184 -- #9 Domenic Abounader
Consolations - dec. by #10 Kenny Courts (Ohio State), 4-3
Eliminated with a 1-2 record

Hwt -- #4 Adam Coon
Quarterfinals - dec. by #5 Bobby Telford (Iowa), 3-2 TB2
Consolations - dec. by #10 Jeremy Johnson (Ohio), 3-1 SV
Eliminated with a 2-2 record

Day 1 Results

Contact: Leah Howard (lchoward@umich.edu)

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