The above photo is courtesy of Iowa State athletics communications.
Redshirt freshmen Jarrett Degen’s time at the NCAA Tournament came to a close after falling to former national champion, No. 10 Jason Tsirtsis of ASU on Friday night.
Unfortunately, Tsirtsis held a solid lead even after Degen was able to tie the score with some stall calls. Tsirtsis had riding time in his corner that ultimately led him to win with a 4-3 decision. Degen showed a great deal of aggressiveness and resiliency until the sound of the clock. A quality all the coaching staff has expressed as a goal for all of their guys.
Degen fought hard to get himself as far as he did having to fight his way to the “blood round” to get as close to the podium as he could with the same consistency and effort we’ve seen all season.
“Jarrett Degen showed how strong and resilient he is to progress this far in the tournament,” said head coach Kevin Dresser at the conclusion of Degen’s loss. “Jarrett’s our poster boy. He’s a poster boy for hard work.”
Degen came on the mat and was able to show that he put a lot of attention to the details and was able to clean up the little things to help him fight aggressively against some of the best.
“He has a big heart and he throws it out there every time,” said Dresser.
Dresser referred to Degen as someone who led by example before leaving for the NCAA Tournament and his performance in Cleveland only supported that.
“Like all great wrestlers, you’re always owning your craft and he’s going to go back to the drawing board and keep getting better,” said Dresser.
Although he fell short to being named an All-American, Degan’s performance is still something to take pride in looking towards the future of Iowa State wrestling. Degen is only a redshirt freshmen and this opens up large doors for his future.
“Iowa State fans haven’t had a lot to cheer about lately and they had a little bit this weekend,” said Dresser. “It’s a sliver of the future and we need to make sure that sliver grows and grows each year and I feel comfortable that it will.”
149: Jarrett Degen dec. No. 13 Colton McCrystal (NEB), 9-5.
149: No. 4 Troy Heilmann (UNC) dec. Jarrett Degen, 7-5
149: Jarrett Degen dec. Steve Bleise (MINN), 9-7 (SV-1)
149: Jarrett Degen maj. dec. Sam Krivus (UVA), 8-0 (3:08 RT)
149: No. 10 Jason Tsirtsis (ASU) dec. Jarrett Degen, 4-3.