"I was never unbeatable in high school or younger," reflected Isaiah Martinez.
But having defeated Penn State's Vincenzo Joseph twice before, and with two NCAA wrestling trophies on his mantel, it had to come as a shock when Joseph pinned him in the 165-pound NCAA final on March 18.
CHAMPAIGN — Illinois athletics held its Oskee Awards event Monday night, with Joe Spencer and Nicole Evans receiving Big Ten Medal of Honor recognition.
Spencer, a former Illini football center, and Evans, an Illini softball outfielder, were recognized for their excellence on and off the field as seniors.
Mike Haile made like UI athletic director Josh Whitman to introduce SCOTT BEATTY as host of "SportsTalk" on WDWS 1400-AM on Monday.
Haile, general manager of WDWS, WHMS and WKIO, subbed "#WeWillRadio" for Whitman's "#WeWillWin" hashtag he has used to introduce new UI coaches.
PODCAST: Sports Talk 3-31-17: Play now!
Steve Kelly is joined by Matt Daniels for his final Sports Talk this Friday, with guest David Schuster of 670 The Score and a few farewells from the listeners.
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URBANA — Illinois athletes maintained an overall grade point average of 3.16 last fall, and by some measures have graduation rates comparable to the broader student body, according to data supplied to the campus Academic Senate.
ST. LOUIS — Isaiah Martinez wrestled the 100th match of his career Saturday night at Scottrade Center, donning his orange singlet reserved solely for national championships against Penn State’s Vincenzo Joseph in the 165-pound title match.
CHAMPAIGN — Jack Yalowitz struck a three-run homer and drove in the first of four sixth-inning runs for Illinois baseball Friday, lifting the host team to an 11-5 win over Toledo.
The Illini (5-9) led 5-4 when Yalowitz notched an RBI double in the sixth inning, the first of three run-scoring hits in the frame for Illinois.
ST. LOUIS — Bust out the orange singlet again. Isaiah Martinez is back in a national championship match.
ST. LOUIS — Isaiah Martinez kept his chase for a third straight national title intact during the first day of the NCAA championships at Scottrade Center.
And three of his other Illinois teammates still have a chance to win a national championship after getting through Thursday unscathed.
Seven wrestlers will compete for Illinois at the NCAA Championships, which open Thursday in St. Louis. Here’s a grappler-by-grappler look:
Hometown: Crystal Lake
Season record: 18-13