In a hard-fought conference dual, Maryland wrestling fell on Sunday in Champaign, Illinois, to No. 15 Illinois, 25-18.
It was Maryland’s closest conference dual of the season, coming out strong against the ranked Fighting Illini. Both teams won five matches each, but Illinois benefitted from three technical falls and a pin in the 157-pound class.
Ryan Diehl (141) was able to get a pin to close the score early to 9-6, but Maryland’s four other wins were only by decision, including No. 7 heavyweight Youssif Hemida’s team-leading 21st win of the season, a 5-2 decision over Duece Rachal.
Diehl’s win brought his season dual record back over .500, 9-8. Alfred Bannister (149) in his victory, improved to 16-6 on the season. Josh Ugalde (174) and David-Brian Whisler (197) also recorded victories for the Terps, but Maryland faltered by not recording bonus-point victories like Illinois.
The Terps (4-10, 0-8 Big Ten) finish the season with three straight home duals. Before they return to College Park, they will send wrestlers to the Messiah Open on Feb. 3. Maryland concludes its Big Ten schedule on Feb. 11 against Minnesota at 2 p.m. in the Xfinity Center Pavilion.