2024 NCAA Preview: 125 lbs.

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Returning 2023 All-Americans in Bold

Northeast 1Joziah FryJohnson & Wales
Northeast 2Gavin BradleyCastleton
Northeast 3Jake CraigSouthern Maine
Mideast 1Jayden CardenasCortland
Mideast 2Ethan LiptzinElizabethtown
Mideast 3Matt GriffinTCNJ
Southeast 1Mason BarrettAverett
Southeast 2Mac CafurelloRoanoke
Southeast 3Akhil VegaStevens
Central 1Jacob DecaturBaldwin Wallace
Central 2Jack StanleyMount Union
Central 3James DayWabash
Lower Midwest 1Christian GuzmanNorth Central
Lower Midwest 2Zac BlasioliMillikin
Lower Midwest 3Cade HornbackCoe
Upper Midwest 1Jalen DunsonUW-Whitewater
Upper Midwest 2Izzy BalsigerUW-Eau Claire
Upper Midwest 3Wyatt KaczrowskiAugsburg

Six All-Americans return to this weight class including the 2022 and 2023 champions Jacob Decatur and Joziah Fry. The two met up in the finals last year with Fry winning 4-2. Neither of these two have put in a full season at 125 with Fry spending the entire second half at 133 and Decatur not taking the mat until the second semester. Fry cruised through the regional, winning by tech fall in the finals in his first action at 125 since December 2nd. Decatur is 26-2 in a busy half season of work. He lost twice at the National Duals, once to North Central’s Guzman and once to Koontz of Dubuque who is not in the bracket here. He does have wins over five other wrestlers in the bracket.

Christian Guzman was third last year after an impressive freshman season. He has been even better this year, only losing at the Midlands to a pair of DI opponents. He has the already mentioned win over Decatur as well as a pair of wins over conference rival and returning All-American Blasioli of Millikin. Blasioli was 5th here last year, winning his final match against Barrett of Averett, the winner in the Southeast Region. Last year’s 4th place finisher, Jake Craig of Southern Maine, dropped to 125 for the second half of this season and finished third in the Northeast Region. He avenged a loss from earlier in the season after falling to 2023 qualifier Gavin Bradley of Castleton in the semifinals.

Keep an eye out for Izza Balsiger of UW-Eau Claire. He was a 2013 All-American at UW-La Crosse as a freshman and returned in January at 31 years old to qualify as the Upper Midwest runner-up. His last year on the mat was the first under the regional system. With the tournament in Wisconsin, his wife and two children should be able to watch him compete. Jalen Dunson, who defeated Balsiger in the regional final, had a great tournament and has come on strong in the second half of the season.

Jayden Cardenas won the Mideast region at 125 after qualifying at 133 last season. He defeated 2023 All-American Lamparelli of Muhlenberg and then beat Ethan Liptzin of Elizabethtown in the finals after Liptzin upset top-seeded Matt Griffin of TCNJ who did come back through to qualify in third. Two other wrestlers making a return to the tournament include Day of Wabash, who was seeded 3rd last year but went 1-2, and Jack Stanley of Mount Union, a 2020 qualifier for Baldwin Wallace and a 2022 qualifier at his current school.

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