The Big Ten Championships for wrestling took place March fourth through fifth as the Wisconsin Badgers look to make their mark. As a team, the Badgers have earned five NCAA Championship qualifications so far, along with dominance on one podium. Dean Hamiti took home first place at 165 pounds for Wisconsin and earned himself a qualification as well.
Big Ten Championships: Dean Hamiti Shines During Tournament
After a dominant season, currently ranked sixth in the country, Dean Hamiti entered the Big Ten Championships as the top seeded 165 pound wrestler. Hamiti entered the tournament with an 18-3 record this season and got a crack at top wrestlers in his weight class. Hamiti has wrestled #1 David Carr, #2 Keegan O’Toole, and #4 Cameron Amine this year, but lost to all of them unfortunately. Despite the hard-fought losses, Hamiti worked his way to an amazing Big Ten Championships win ahead of the NCAA tournament.
Hamiti earned a first round bye as the top seed, but then faced Andrew Sparks of Minnesota. It did not take long as Hamiti earned the 8-0 major decision win to advance to the quarterfinals. The next match up for the Badger was Carson Kharchla of Ohio State, who came into the tournament as the five seed. It was another quick match for Wisconsin, as Hamiti earned the 14-2 major decision over Kharchla to make his way into the semifinals.
Him. The Champ. @HamitiDean wins it all at 165 pic.twitter.com/q8sysuQSbf
— Wisconsin Wrestling (@BadgerWrestling) March 6, 2023
Patrick Kennedy of Iowa came into the tournament as the third seed and faced Cameron Amine, the second seed. Kennedy upset Amine, 3-2, to advance to the semifinals and face Dean Hamiti. Kennedy worked Hamiti the most out of any of his opponents in the tournament and went the distance. However, the Badger proved to be too strong, and Hamiti claimed the 9-2 victory over Kennedy in the end. It was a great match and a great tournament from Hamiti. The Badgers performed well as a team, but certainly not up to their expectations. The focus will now be turned to the upcoming NCAA Championships where Hamiti will attempt to capture first once again.
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