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O'Connor Earns Spot in 157 Semifinal Match: Guaranteed All-America Honors

Photo courtesy of Tabitha Wilson.

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OMAHA, Neb. – Top-seed J.P. O’Connor of the Harvard wrestling team advanced to the semifinals at 157 pounds at the 2010 NCAA Wrestling Championships at the Qwest Center. With the win, O’Connor is guaranteed All-American honors.

The Oxford, N.Y., native won his quarterfinal match over Justin Gaejthe of Northern Colorado, 8-1. O’Connor scored 20 seconds into match and rode him out for the rest of the period. He was called for locking his hands at time expired, giving Gaejthe his only point of the match. In the second, O’Connor chose bottom and escaped in 20 seconds. Gaejthe went for a shot late in the second, but O’Connor grabbed his ankle and scored at the edge of the mat. He scores another take down in the third and adds a point for riding time to finish out the match.

O’Connor had advanced to the quarters three times before but was unsuccessful. He will face American’s Steve Fittery in the semifinals. He is 33-0 on the season and has 130 career victories. Two shy of Jesse Jantzen’s record of 132.

He is only the second Harvard wrestler to earn All-America honors three times in his career.

Louis Caputo was upset in the consolation round by Cornell’s Steve Bosak. After a scoreless first period, Bosak put a point on the board with the escape. At the edge of the mat, Bosak clipped Caputo’s ankles and pulled him down to his back for the takedown and pin. Caputo, a two-time All-American, finishes the season with a 23-5 record and 126 career victories.

Wrestling gets back underway at the Qwest Center at 7 p.m. All semifinal matches will air live on ESPNU and online at espn360.com.

Results
125 – Steven Keith
fell to No. 12 Ben Kjar (Utah Valley), 4-0
fell to Ryan Mango (Stanford), F, 3:56

157 – No. 1 J.P. O’Connor
defeated Vincent Salminen (North Dakota State), 15-2
defeated Jake Kerr (Iowa), 8-1
defeated Justin Gaejthe (Northern Colorado), 8-1

184 – No. 8 Louis Caputo
defeated Austin Trottman (App. State), 5-2
fell to No. 9 Phil Keddy (Iowa), 5-2
fell to Steve Bosak (Cornell), F, 3:44