McGee Crowned MAC Champion; Wright Earns Automatic Bid to NCAAs
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Old Dominion freshman Michael McGee avenged a regular season loss to Brock Hudkins of Northern Illinois to win the 2018 MAC Wrestling Championship in the 125-pound weight class and punch his ticket to the 2018 NCAA Championship. A takedown in overtime lifted the Illinois native over Hudkins for a 3-1 final score. Hudkins was a 2017 NCAA qualifier, who was one match away from placing at the national tournament. Seldon Wright also earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships, which is held at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio on March 15-17.
"We wrestled much better today. However, we still left a couple close matches out there at 149 and 157," said head coach Steve Martin. "If we would have won either of those bouts, two other guys would've punched tickets to the NCAA Tournament. Now, it's just a waiting process for wild cards to come out. We really didnt want to put ourselves in that position but we will see how it plays out on Tuesday."
To view the final brackets, click HERE.
Junior Seldon Wright (174) was the other Monarch to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships. To start the day, Wright earned a 12-9 decision over EMU’s Andrew McNally to move on and wrestle for third. In the third place bout, Wright had to win in order to qualify for the NCAA Championship. Wright held off Dylan Barreiro of Kent State by a 3-2 score to punch his ticket to the NCAA Championships. Wright is now a two-time NCAA qualifier.
Falling one win short of an NCAA automatic bid, Larry Early (157) suffered a 5-4 loss in the third place match to No. 12 Colin Heffernan of CMU. Early started off his day in the consolation semifinals with a 9-0 win over Cullen Cummings.
Kenan Carter (149) and Shane Jones (165) both dropped their consolation semifinal bouts by decision. They moved down into the fifth place matches and won at their respective weight classes. Carter won by major decision over Nolan Baker of NIU and Jones defeated Noah Grover by decision for a fifth-place finish. Earlier in competition, Carter defeated Springer of EMU who qualified for the NCAA tournament at the MAC Tournament. Carter also nearly defeated #3 Leeth in the semifinals and in the consolation semifinals, dropped a close match to two-time NCAA qualifier and #4 Justin Oliver of Central Michigan.
At-large bids will be announced on March 6, where 47 wrestlers will be picked that did not qualify at their conference sites.
Old Dominion finished in seventh as a team with 80 points.
125 – Michael McGee (ODU) dec over Brock Hudkins (NIU), TB-1 3-1
149 – Justin Oliver (CMU) dec over Kenan Carter (ODU), 9-7
157 – Larry Early (ODU) md over Cullen Cummings (Ohio), 9-0
165 – Logan Parks (CMU) dec over Shane Jones (ODU), 6-0
174 – Seldon Wright (ODU) dec over Andrew McNally (EMU), 12-9
Final Team Standings:
1. Missouri, 177.0
2. Central Michigan, 125.0
3. Eastern Michigan, 120.5
4. Kent State, 98.0
5. Ohio, 84.5
6. Buffalo, 81.0
7. Old Dominion, 80.0
8. Northern Illinois, 78.0