Panthers place pair in MAC championships

YPSILANTI, Mich. – The Northern Iowa wrestlers currently sit in third place with 60 points heading into the final round of the Mid-American Conference Championships.

The Panthers are sending two wrestlers onto the finals. No. 5 Dylan Peters at 125 pounds and No. 21 Bryce Steiert at 157 will all be vying for a tournament title. No. 15 Blaize Cabell at the heavyweight will have to wrestle his way into a NCAA tournament berth.

Peters earned his third trip to the NCAA championships with a fall against Kent State’s Del Vinas and a decision against Ohio’s No. 26 Shakur Laney. If Peters goes on to win at 125 pounds, it will be his second MAC title of his career.

Steiert could be UNI’s first true freshman at the NCAA tournament since Tony Wieland in 1996. Steiert topped No. 10 Luke Smith of Central Michigan for his first top-10 win in a 6-3 decision, then earned an 11-0 major-decision against Northern Illinois’ Andrew Morse to move on to the finals.

Cabell claimed a 15-6 decision against Newton Smerchek of Central Michigan and will have to wrestle for a chance at heading to the NCAAs.

South Tama alumnus Kyle Lux grabbed bonus points for the Panthers with a major-decision against Old Dominion’s Jared Swan, 11-2. But Lux fell out of the MAC tournament with two losses later in the afternoon.

Missouri leads the MAC tournament with 103.5 points. Central Michigan is second with 76 points and UNI third with 60.