University of Minnesota wrestling recruit Jake Deitchler fell in a close match to Armen Vardanyan of Ukraine in the second repechage round of the 66 kg/145.5 lb. weight class at the Olympic Greco Roman competition early Wednesday morning late Wednesday afternoon in Beijing - and was eliminated from medal contention by a score of 1-1, 1-3, 1-1. Both of his opponents went on to win medals.
In the Greco-Roman discipline, rounds are awarded to the wrestler who scores last in any rounds that end in a tie. This was the case in both the first and third rounds of Deitchler’s bout with Vardanyan. Although Deitchler won the second round on the strength of a two-point reversal, Vardanyan clinched the match when he was given the opportunity to defend the bottom last in the third stanza and recorded an escape.
Due to chance a referee pulls one of two colored balls out of a bag to determine which wrestler starts on top Vardanyan was granted the opportunity to defend last in both the first and third rounds, where he scored escapes to tie Deitchler. Vardanyan went on to win a bronze medal later in the competition.
Deitchler was afforded the opportunity to wrestle in the repechage round due to his first round opponent, Kanatbek Begaliev of Kyrgyzstan, advancing to the gold medal match. Begaliev, who went on to capture the silver medal, defeated Deitchler by a 6-0, 3-3 tally in the opening round.
The 18-year-old Deitchler will enroll in classes at the Minnesota this fall, where he has committed to wrestle for the Gophers. After graduating from Anoka High School this spring, Deitchler became the first high school wrestler to qualify for the Olympic Greco Roman team in 32 years.