Buchanan takes third at NCAA Tournament
* University of Wyoming Athletics media relations release
DETROIT -- Stephen Buchanan closed out his NCAA tournament and his season with a third-place finish at 197 pounds on Saturday inside the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.
The bronze medal finish caps off an incredible and historic season for the junior from Loyal, Wisconsin who is now one of only four two-time All-Americans in program history.
Buchanan got his day started in the consolation semifinals against a familiar foe in No. 10 Yonger Bastida (ISU). Buchanan and Bastida had already met twice this season with Buchanan taking both meetings as he looked to make it 3-0 on the season against the Cyclone. After giving up an early takedown, Buchanan took control of the match earning a takedown of his own and taking a 4-2 lead into the third period. In the third period Buchanan shut down Bastida’s scoring attempts and clinched the 4-3 win to advance to the third-place match.
Buchanan faced another familiar foe in the third-place match going up against No. 7 Rocky Elam (MIZZ) for the second time in as many days.
After shutting out Elam a day ago in a 4-0 victory, Buchanan did it again less than 24 hours later grinding out a 1-0 win over Elam to earn third place. Buchanan closes out his season with a 28-2 record including winning 15 of his last 16 matches.
“After the way my season ended last year, it feels great to finish this season with a win, jumping from eighth to third is nice but it’s not my end goal," Buchanan said. “I’m glad I get to represent Wyoming on this national stage and show everyone what we can do. I want to prove that that you can come to 7220 and be a National Champion.”
The Cowboys also had a performance to remember as a team, recording their first top-25 finish at the NCAA tournament since the 2017-18 season wrapping up the weekend in 23rd with 21.0 points.
It marks the sixth time during the Mark Branch era that the Pokes have finished in the top 25 at the NCAA tournament.
197 – No. 2 Stephen Buchanan
Cons. Semifinals – No. 2 Buchanan (WYO) dec. Yonger Bastida (ISU) 4-3
Third place match – No. 2 Buchanan (WYO) dec. Rocky Elam (MIZZ) 1-0
15 Questions You Should Never Ask Someone From Wyoming
- 15 Questions You Should Never Ask Someone From Wyoming