ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Tony Cassioppi tasted defeat for the first time in his collegiate wrestling career Saturday, dampening the celebration as top-ranked Iowa clinched a share of its second straight Big Ten regular-season championship.
The Hawkeyes handled 22nd-ranked Michigan 27-9 at the Crisler Center, winning eight matches to earn its eighth Big Ten win of the season.
Second-ranked Wolverines 285-pounder Mason Parris spoiled the Hawkeyes’ party, moving to 23-0 on the season when he flipped Cassioppi on his back for a pin in 4 minutes, 31 seconds.
The loss was the first in 16 collegiate matches for the Hawkeye redshirt freshman, who was taken down twice in the first period but managed a reversal and an escape to stay within a 5-3 score.
Parris escaped in the opening seconds of the second period and after a scramble, the Wolverines’ sophomore was able to take Cassioppi down before flipping him onto his back to record the fall.
The setback came after Iowa had strung together seven straight wins after splitting its first two matches against Michigan.
The Hawkeyes picked up bonus points in just two wins, from Alex Marinelli at 165 and Michael Kemerer at 174.
Marinelli rebounded from his first loss in 39 collegiate duals by scoring four first-period takedowns on his way to an 18-6 major decision over Reece Hughes, extending the 12-3 lead Iowa had opened midway through the dual.
Kemerer followed with a technical fall. He jumped out to a 10-2 lead after one period against the Wolverines’ Max Maylor and led 17-4 through two periods before claiming a 21-6 win in 5:21.
Their work allowed the Hawkeyes (11-0, 8-0 Big Ten) to secure at least a piece of the program’s 12th conference dual championship since the Big Ten started recognizing a dual league champion in 1999.
Iowa moved ahead to stay against Michigan (6-4, 5-2) when Carter Happel won a 7-4 decision at 141, separating himself from Cole Martin with an escape and quick takedown with 23 seconds left in the second period of his match.
The win gave the Hawkeyes a 6-3 lead after the Wolverines’ Jack Medley denied top-ranked Spencer Lee bonus points for the first time in 13 matches this season.
Iowa’s unbeaten 125-pounder did help the Hawkeyes open a 3-0 lead in the dual, building a 4-0 advantage after one period on his way to an 8-1 decision.
The Wolverines tied the dual at 133, where takedowns in the first and second periods positioned Michigan’s Joey Silva to earn a 7-5 decision over Bettendorf’s Paul Glynn.
Trailing 4-3 after two periods, Glynn did record a takedown in the third period but was unable to get one final shot in to counter the riding time Silva had accumulated.
Iowa can clinch the Big Ten regular-season title outright with a win next Saturday in an 8:30 p.m. dual against Minnesota, which will present Cassioppi with another test in top-ranked 285-pounder Gable Steveson.