After suffering a big loss to Penn State their last time out, Sun Devil Wrestling took to the mats this weekend in Illinois to compete in the 56th Annual Ken Kraft Midlands Championships. The event, hosted by Northwestern, showcased wrestlers from as far away as California, and as close as Indiana.
After a hectic Saturday, ASU had three wrestlers slated to wrestle in the semifinals on Sunday: junior, Josh Shields (165 lb.), junior, Zahid Valencia (174 lb.), and senior heavyweight, Tanner Hall (wrestling unattached).
Shields earned himself a 3-2 decision against Northern Iowa’s Bryce Steiert and was able to walk away a third place finisher at this year’s competition.
Valencia was also able to come out on top against a Panther wrestler when it counted most: A 17-7 major decision win gave Valencia another 1st place finish. With this win, Valencia not only claimed the top spot on the podium; he won his third title as a Midlands competitor.
Unattached Tanner Hall was also declared a champion Sunday night. Hall bested Northwestern’s Conan Jennings 4-3 and secured the heavyweight title.
Aside from those three, several other Sun Devils were able to set themselves up for a spot on the podium after Saturday’s action.
Sophomore, Josiah Kline (133 lb.), was able to battle all the way back and finish fourth in his first appearance at the Midlands for ASU. Jacori Teemer (149 lb., unattached), a freshman out of New York (state), notched a fifth place finish to cap off a successful weekend of matches for him.
And one other wrestler for Arizona State who was able to find his way onto the podium was senior, Jacen Petersen (165 lb.). Petersen finished eighth overall in his bracket.
The Sun Devils (1-3) are back home this upcoming Saturday to face off against another powerhouse opponent: #5 Michigan (3-0) will be in Tempe Saturday night. The meet is scheduled to start at 8:00 PM MST inside Wells Fargo Arena.