MINNEAPOLIS Mike Pucillo, a redshirt-sophomore on the Ohio State wrestling team, became a Big Ten champion Sunday at 184 pounds in the 2008 Big Ten Conference Championships at Williams Arena in Minneapolis, Minn. Earning his first league title, Pucillo improves to 29-1 overall on the season.

As a team, the Buckeyes finished fifth with 92.5 points. Iowa won the conference crown with 127 points, while Minnesota was second with 112.5 points. Michigan rounded out the Top 3 with 97.5 points.

Senior heavyweight J.D. Bergman was a runner-up in the championships. Bergman lost a 2-0 decision to Dustin Fox of Northwestern, the second seed. In his four-year career with the Buckeyes, Bergman is a three-time Big Ten championship runner-up. Bergman was second at 197 pounds in 2004 and 2007.

Redshirt-junior J Jaggers had his best league championship outing with a third-place finish at 141 pounds. Winner of 10 of his last 11 matches, Jaggers pinned Northwestern’s and No. 7-seed Keith Sulzer in 2:41 for his spot on the podium.

En route to his No. 3 placing, Jaggers defeated Iowa’s and No. 4-seed Dan LeClere, 6-3. Tied, 2-2 in the first period, Jaggers took a slim 3-2 advantage heading into the final period. In the deciding stanza, Jaggers was able to score the decisive takedown and compile a riding time of 1:26 for the win.
Freshman 125-pounder Nikko Triggas finished sixth at his first Big Ten championship. The native of Moraga, Calif., dropped a 10-4 decision to eighth-seed Collin Cudd of Wisconsin. Triggas trailed throughout the match, but only by three points after the second period. However, Cudd scored a pair of takedowns in the final period and accumulated a riding time of 1:07. 

Triggas dropped to the fifth-place bout when he lost 13-5 to fifth-seed Gabe Flores of Illinois. Triggas and Flores were even at 2-all after the first period, but Flores took a 6-4 lead following the second stanza and after three more takedowns and a riding time of 1:12 in the third period was the victor.

At 133 pounds, redshirt-sophomore Reece Humphrey was the first Buckeye to place , finishing seventh. Humphrey defeated Penn State’s Tim Hass, 14-4 in the seventh-place matchup to earn his bid to the NCAA championships. Humphrey, who hails from Indianapolis, Ind., never trailed throughout his bout, taking 7-1 and 9-3 leads after the first and second periods, respectively. 

After medical defaulting, sophomore Lance Palmer finished sixth at 149 pounds. In his first match of session three, Palmer dropped an 8-6 decision to No. 6-seedJake Patacsil of Purdue. Palmer and Patacsil were tied at 6 apiece in the third period, but a second stalling call on Palmer, coupled with a Patacsil riding time of 3:21 gave the Boilermaker the victory.

Redshirt-junior Jason Johnstone was an NCAA qualifier at 157 pounds with a fourth-place finish. Johnstone lost his third-place bout to Indiana’s and third-seed Brandon Becker, 9-0. Johnstone won his third-consecutive match of the championships, 7-5, in his first bout of session three against Michigan’s and sixth-seed Jeff Marsh in overtime. Johnstone scored a reversal as time expired in the extra session for his spot in the third-place matchup.

Advancing to the seventh-place bout with a berth in the NCAA championships on the line at 197 pounds, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, native John Weakley was pinned by Minnesota’s and sixth-seed Justin Bronson in 3:26. The freshman was leading Bronson, 2-0, prior to the pin.

The seven Buckeye NCAA qualifiers will next compete at the 2008 NCAA Championships March 20-22 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Mo.   

2008 Big Ten Championships
March 8-9
Williams Arena
Minneapolis, Minn.

Individual Results 
No. 2 Charlie Falck (Iowa) dec. No. 7 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State), 8-4
No. 7 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State) pinned Akif Eren (Purdue), 1:10
No. 7 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State) dec. No. 6 Mark McKnight (Penn State), 9-6
No. 5 Gabe Flores (Illinois) mdec. No. 7 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State), 13-5
No. 8 Collin Cudd (Wisconsin) dec. No. 7 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State), 10-4

No. 2 Joey Slaton (Iowa) dec. No. 7 Reece Humphrey (Ohio State), 12-6
No. 7 Reece Humphrey (Ohio State) mdec. Eric Metzler (Northwestern), 14-2
No. 6 Andrae Hernandez (Indiana) dec. No. 7 Reece Humphrey (Ohio State), 9-7
No. 7 Reece Humphrey (Ohio State) mdec. No. 8 Tim Haas (Penn State), 14-4

No. 6 Manuel Rivera (Minnesota) dec. No. 3 J Jaggers (Ohio State), 6-2
No. 3 J Jaggers (Ohio State) mdec. Matt Redmond (Purdue), 14-1
No. 3 J Jaggers (Ohio State) tfall. Jeff Wimberly (Michigan State), 15-0
No. 3 J Jaggers (Ohio State) dec. No. 4 Dan LeClere (Iowa), 6-3
No. 3 J Jaggers (Ohio State) pinned No. 7 Keith Sulzer (Northwestern), 2:41

No. 4 Bubba Jenkins (Penn State) dec. No. 5 Lance Palmer (Ohio State,), 6-5
No. 5 Lance Palmer (Ohio State) dec. Kendall Vogel (Wisconsin), 8-2
No. 5 Lance Palmer (Ohio State) dec. No. 7 Ryan Lang (Northwestern), 5-3sv
No. 6 Jake Patacsil (Purdue) dec. No. 5 Lance Palmer (Ohio State), 8-6
No. 4 Bubba Jenkins (Penn State) inj. default No. 5 Lance Palmer (Ohio State)

No. 2 Dan Vallimont (Penn State) dec. Jason Johnstone (Ohio State), 4-2
Jason Johnstone (Ohio State) mdec. No. 8 John Fulger (Michigan State), 13-6
Jason Johnstone (Ohio State) dec. Nick Bertucci (Purdue), 3-1
Jason Johnstone (Ohio State) dec. No. 6 Jeff Marsh (Michigan), 7-5TB1
No. 3 Brandon Becker (Indiana) mdec. Jason Johnstone (Ohio State), 9-0

No. 1 Mike Pucillo (Ohio State) dec. Nick Palmieri (Michigan State), 10-3
No. 1 Mike Pucillo (Ohio State) mdec. No. 8 A.J. Kissel (Purdue), 12-3
No. 1 Mike Pucillo (Ohio State) medical forfeit No. 4 Roger Kish (Minnesota)
No. 1 Mike Pucillo (Ohio State) dec. No. 2 Tyrel Todd (Michigan), 4-3

No. 2 Phil Davis (Penn State) pinned John Weakley (Ohio State), 4:59
John Weakley (Ohio State) pinned No. 8 Anthony Biondo (Michigan), 6:11
Logan Brown (Purdue) dec. John Weakley (Ohio State), 2-1
No. 6 Justin Bronson (Minnesota) pinned John Weakley (Ohio State), 3:26

No. 1 J.D. Bergman (Ohio State) dec. Nathan Everhart (Indiana), 5-4
No. 1 J.D. Bergman (Ohio State) dec. No. 4 Matt Fields (Iowa), 3-2
No. 2 Dustin Fox (Northwestern) dec. No. 1 J.D. Bergman (Ohio State), 2-0