By University of Illinois Athletics

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. – Illinois wrestling qualified two wrestlers for the semifinal round of the 55th annual Ken Kraft Midlands on Friday night inside Sears Centre. Redshirt junior Emery Parker and redshirt freshman Dylan Duncan each won their third match of the day and will wrestle for a spot in the finals on Saturday afternoon. In addition to the two semifinalists, three other Illini remain alive in wrestlebacks.

Action at the 55th Midlands resumes on Saturday, December 30, with semifinals and two more rounds of wrestlebacks beginning at noon central time. First-, third- and fifth- place bouts will be contested at 7:05 p.m. central time on Saturday night. Prior to finals, current Illinois head coach Jim Heffernan and former Illini head coach Mark Johnson will be inducted into the Midlands Hall of Fame. Sessions three and four on Saturday can be streamed on BTN Plus and FloWrestling.

The first of the two Illini into the semifinals was No. 4 seed Dylan Duncan with a 6-1 decision over Iowa’s Paul Glynn. Duncan led wire-to-wire beginning with a takedown 30 seconds into the match. Duncan tacked on a second takedown in the third, and then capped off the scoring by adding 1:36 of riding time. Only allowing one takedown in his three victories on Friday, Duncan has outscored his opponents 20-4 at Midlands. On Saturday, Duncan will look to upset the No. 1 wrestler at 133 pounds, and 2016 NCAA finalist, Seth Gross of South Dakota State.

Later in the session, redshirt junior Emery Parker joined Duncan in tomorrow’s semifinals with an 8-5 decision against Kayne MacCallum of Eastern Michigan. After scoring a takedown in the first period, Parker distanced himself from MacCallum with a reversal to start the second frame and another takedown. A third takedown in the final period capped off the three-point victory. Emery Parker will wrestle No. 2 seed, and ninth-ranked, Nick Gravina (Rutgers) in his semifinal match. Parker defeated Gravina in sudden victory, 8-6, last season in Piscataway, New Jersey.

Battling back with two wins in the 125-pound consolation bracket, Travis Piotrowski won his first match of session two by medical forfeit over fourth seeded #14 Ryan Millof (Arizona State). In his second match of the evening, Piotrowski battled No. 15 seed Kyle Akins of Buffalo in a defensive struggle. The two wrestlers traded takedowns in periods two and three, but Piotrowski’s one minute, 20 seconds of riding time earned him the decisive point. The Illini sophomore will continue his path through the consolation bracket with No. 9 seed Zeke Moisey of West Virginia on Saturday.

Elsewhere in consolation competition, redshirt freshman Mike Carr (141), redshirt junior Eric Barone (149) and redshirt senior Kyle Langenderfer (157) each picked up victories in session two, but dropped their second match of the evening to eliminate them from competition.

For complete coverage of Fighting Illini wrestling, go to FIGHTINILLINI.com and follow @IlliniWrestling on Twitter and Instagram.

Illinois Semifinalists (Seed in parentheses):

184: (3) #12 Emery Parker (r-Jr.) // 3-0

Champ Round 1: Parker dec. Anthony Mancini (Unat. Franklin), 7-5 (SV-1)
Champ Round 2: Parker major dec. Max Lyon (Purdue), 16-4
Quarterfinals: Parker dec. Kayne MacCallum (Eastern Michigan), 8-5
Semifinals: vs. (2) #9 Nick Gravina (Rutgers)

133: (4) #20 Dylan Duncan (r-Fr.) // 3-0

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Duncan major dec. Noah Gonser (Eastern Michigan), 11-3
Champ Round 3: Duncan dec. (13) Caleb Richardson (Old Dominion), 3-0
Quarterfinals: Duncan dec. Paul Glynn (Iowa), 6-1
Semifinals: (1) vs. #1 Seth Gross (South Dakota State)

Illinois in Consolation Brackets (Seed in parentheses):

125: (7) #15 Travis Piotrowski (So.) // 3-1

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Piotrowski tech fall Dan Utterback (Northwestern), 18-1
Champ Round 3: (10) Spencer Lee (Unat. Iowa) tech fall Piotrowski, 17-2
Cons. Round 3: Piotrowski medical forfeit (4) #14 Ryan Millof (Arizona State)
Cons. Round 4: Piotrowski dec. (15) Kyle Akins (Buffalo), 2-1
Cons. Round 5: vs. (9) Zeke Moisey (West Virginia)

133: Abdullah Assaf (Unattached) // 1-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: (3) #13 Korbin Myers (Edinboro) major dec. Assaf, 11-3
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Assaf dec. Joe Lobeck (Unat. Lehigh), 13-6
Cons. Round 4: (9) Markus Simmons (Iowa State) dec. Assaf, 8-6
Abdullah Assaf eliminated

141: Dylan Thurston (r-Fr.) // 0-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: (7) Cole Martin (Wisconsin) dec. Thurston, 4-1
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Jack Hathaway (Oregon State) dec. Thurston, 8-4
Dylan Thurston eliminated

141: Mike Carr (r-Fr.) // 2-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Carr dec. Pete Lipari (Rutgers), 8-4
Champ Round 3: (1) #20 Mason Smith (Central Michigan) dec. Carr, 3-0
Cons. Round 3: Carr dec. Sa’Deria Perry (Eastern Michigan), 13-6
Cons. Round 4: (9) Max Murin (Unat. Iowa) dec. Carr, 3-2
Mike Carr eliminated

149: (12) Eric Barone (r-So.) // 2-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Barone dec. Nicholas Palumbo (Buffalo), 3-0
Champ Round 3: (5) Jason Tsirtis (Arizona State) dec. Barone, 5-4 (TB-2)
Cons. Round 3: Barone dec. Dante Rodriguez (Iowa State), 5-3
Cons. Round 4: Jaren Glosser (Iowa) dec. Barone, 3-1 (SV-1)
Eric Barone eliminated

149: Isaac Reinemann (r-Jr.) // 1-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: (10) Patrick Lugo (Unat. Iowa) dec. Reinemann, 7-4
Cons. Round 2: Reinemann dec. Nolan Saxton (Unat. Central Michigan), 7-6
Cons. Round 3: Tyler Meisinger (Michigan) dec. Reinemann, 4-0
Isaac Reinemann eliminated

157: (8) #13 Kyle Langenderfer (r-Sr.) // 1-2

Champ Round 1: Hunter Willits (Oregon State) dec. Langenderfer, 5-4
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Langenderfer dec. Caden McWhirter (Northern Illinois), 6-4
Cons. Round 4: Luke Weber (Nebraska) dec. Langenderfer, 5-3 (TB-1)
Kyle Langenderfer eliminated

157: Johnny Mologousis (Unattached) // 1-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Mologousis tech fall Anthony Petrone (Northwestern), 16-0
Champ Round 3: (12) Jordan Laster (Unat. Princeton) dec. Mologousis, 7-4
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Spencer Nagy (Edinboro) dec. Mologousis, 5-2
Johnny Mologousis eliminated

157: Nick Gasbarro (r-So.) // 0-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: (7) John Vanschenkbri (Rutgers) tech fall Gasbarro, 15-0
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Alex Smythe (Unat. Buffalo) dec. Gasnbarro, 3-2
Nick Gasbarro eliminated

174: David Riojas (Fr.) // 0-2

Champ Round 1: Bye
Champ Round 2: Myles Terry (Oregon State) dec. Riojas, 11-5
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Jake Lanning (Unat. Buffalo) dec. Riojas, 10-8
David Riojas eliminated

197: Andre Lee (r-Jr.) // 1-2

Champ Round 1: Cade Belshay (Arizona State) dec. Lee, 3-2
Cons. Round 1: Bye
Cons. Round 2: Lee dec. Zachary Chakonis (Northwestern), 3-2
Cons. Round 3: Regis Durbin (Northwestern) dec. Lee, 4-3
Andre Lee eliminated

197: Matt Wroblewski (Unattached) // 0-2

Champ Round 1: (1) #6 Nate Rotert (South Dakota State) dec. Wroblewski, 8-3
Cons. Round 1: Bye
Cson. Round 2: Cade Belshay (Arizona State) dec. Wroblewski, 5-4
Matt Wroblewski eliminated

HWT: Deuce Rachal (r-Jr.) // 2-2

Champ Round 1: Rachal fall Gannon Gremmel (Iowa State), 4:16
Champ Round 2: (4) #10 Youssif Hemida (Maryland) dec. Rachal, 4-2
Cons. Round 2: Bye
Cons. Round 3: Rachal fall Ross Sealby (Northern Illinois), 4:05
Cons. Round 4: Ian Butterbrodt (Brown) dec. Duece Rachal, 3-1
Duece Rachal eliminated

Related: Parker, Duncan Advance To Quarterfinals At Midlands