DEKALB, Ill. – Greg Bulsak became the first Mid-American Conference (MAC) champion in program history on Sunday, taking home the title at 197 pounds to finish off an exciting weekend at the 2020 MAC Championships. Joining Bulsak on the podium was Brock Zacherl, who took second in his bracket after a close bout with fourth-ranked Brock Mauller of Missouri.
Bulsak claimed his title on Sunday due to a medical forfeit by Rider’s Ethan Laird, who entered the weekend as the second seed to Bulsak’s one seed. On Saturday, Bulsak won three straight matches to lock down his spot in the finals, including a decision over Northern Illinois’s Gage Braun in the semifinal bout.
Both Bulsak and Zacherl punched their tickets for the NCAA Championships with their results this weekend, with the full field announcement due on Tuesday. Bulsak will enter the national tournament with a 30-5 record, while Zacherl owns a 24-4 record.
The 149-pound bout featured the top two seeds in the bracket, and for the majority of the bout things were tight. Things were scoreless after one period despite lots of action from both wrestlers, with Zacherl getting in on a number of shots but unable to finish. Mauller elected the down spot for the second period and quickly escaped, followed by a takedown to go ahead 3-0. Zacherl escaped there, as well as at the start of the third period, to make it 3-2.
Zacherl’s best chance at the upset came with a minute remaining in the third period when he finally broke through Mauller’s defenses and connected on a double-leg attempt. He was not able to maintain control, however, and Mauller slipped out to avoid the takedown. Mauller took Zacherl down one more time to finish the bout and claim the MAC title.
Clarion finished their first MAC Championships in 12th place with 39.5 team points.