By Tim Glon
CRAWFORDSVILLE, Ind. -- Senior Clayton Davidson (Kirtland) and junior Seth Transue (Plain City/Dublin) reached the semifinals of their respective weight classes to lead the Ohio Northern wrestling team on the first day of the 2019 NCAA Division III Central Regional Wrestling Championships on Friday at Knowling Fieldhouse.
Fourth-seeded Davidson advanced in the 174-pound weight class with a pin of Shannon Legge of Defiance in the first round and a 5-4 decision over fifth-seeded Jeremiah Slagle of Heidelberg in the quarterfinals.
Davidson will face top-seeded Darden Schrug of host Wabash in the semifinals on Saturday morning.
Fourth-seeded Transue had the easiest day of all the Polar Bears, receiving a first-round bye and advancing to the semifinals with a 7-5 victory over fifth-seeded Rosendo Beltran of Defiance.
Both wrestlers have clinched a top-6 finish with the top three in each weight class advancing to the NCAA III Championships March 8-9 at Roanoke, Va.
A victory in the semifinals or two victories in the consolation rounds after a semifinal loss would clinch a spot at the national championships.
Three other Polar Bears are still alive in the consolation rounds and have clinched a top-8 placement in their respective weight classes.
With three victories on Saturday, each wrestler would grab the third and final bid to the NCAA Championships.
Sixth-seeded Junior Jeff Andrews (New Baltimore, Mich./Anchor Bay) is 3-1 at 149, fifth-seeded freshman Shaun Wagner (Southington, Conn.) is 2-1 at 157 and sophomore Cash Thompson (Lake Odessa, Mich./Lakewood) is 2-1 at 184 pounds.
The Polar Bears are currently in sixth place out of 19 teams with 48.5 points in the team standings.
The second and final day of the Regional Championships will get underway on Saturday morning at 10 am.