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Dec. 30, 2004

Columbus, Ohio – The Ohio State wrestling team (1-3, 0-0 Big Ten) completed Sessions I and II at the 2004 Midlands Championships in Evanston, Ill. Wednesday. With two sessions in the books, Ohio State stands in 10th place, led by sophomore J.D. Bergman, who has advanced to the semifinals at 197 pounds. Central Michigan leads the field with 74.5 points, followed closely by Iowa State with 71.0.

Bergman, the No. 2-seed at 197, gained his bid to the semis after he tallied his third fall of the season in the first round and then impressively downed his second-round opponent by a 14-2 major decision to set up a quarterfinal bout with No. 10 Matt Delgyud of host Northwestern. Bergman, a sophomore, handled Delgyud, recording his second fall of the day over the Wildcat at the 2:59 mark of the bout. With the win, Bergman is aligned to face No. 6-seed Tyrone Byrd of Illinois in the semis Thursday.

At 133, freshman T.J. Enright gained a bid to the quarters with a pair of decision wins following a first round bye. Enright, a freshman from Galloway, Ohio, scored a 6-4 decision in sudden victory overtime before notching a 6-2 win in the third round to set up a quarterfinal match with No. 5-seed Sam Hiatt of Northern Illinois. Although Enright defeated Hiatt earlier this season en route to his 133-pound title at the Michigan State Open, the Huskie got the best of Enright with a 2-1 decision in the tie-break round of overtime. The bout ended at 1-1 through regulation and neither wrestler was able to score in the first two rounds of overtime. In the tie-break session, Hiatt notched an escape for the win. With the loss, Enright dropped to the consolation bracket to meet No. 11-seed Jeff Eveleth of Penn Thursday.

Another freshman, Kirk Nail(Hilliard, Ohio)used a pair of decision wins by 3-1 and 3-2 counts to earn a slot in the quarters at HWT vs. No. 5-seed Bill Stouffer of Central Michigan. Stouffer emerged with a 3-2 decision of his own to send Nail to the wrestlebacks, where he still has a shot at placing Thursday, starting with a bout against No. 11 Paul Weibel of Lehigh. After a first-round defeat, sophomore Alex Picazo (Grandview, Ohio) also moved on to wrestle Thursday in the 184-pound tournament. Following a loss by pin fall in the first round, Picazo rolled to three straight wins in the wrestlebacks, starting with a 12-4 major decision and ending with a pair of 7-3 decision wins to set up a bout Thursday with T.J. Morrison of Rider.

Several Buckeyes won their first round matches, but fell into the consolation bracket and were eliminated after wrestleback losses. Falling into the category were Ryan Needle and Steve Wollery at 149, Keegan Muller at 157, Zach Craiglow at 165 and Nathaniel Augustson at 174.

Also wrestling as an open competitor was Ohio State assistant coach and 1998 NCAA champion Mitch Clark. In the 197 bracket, Clark joined Bergman as a quarterfinalist with a 9-5 decision in round two and a fall in the third round before falling to No. 5 Scott Barker of Oregon, 9-5, to drop into the consolations. Clark won the Midlands in 1998.

Session III gets underway at 10 a.m. EDT Thursday. For complete bracket results and team standings, please visit www.nusports.com.