Komara, McCracken ready to lead Kent State wrestling into the national tournament


Senior 184-pounder Colin McCracken wrestles Air Force’s Jacob Thompson during the Appalachian State Invite in Boone, North Carolina on Sunday, Nov. 14.

Noah Keeney, Reporter

The Kent State wrestling team will be heading to Detroit this week for the NCAA Championships.

The Flashes will be represented by senior Kody Komara, who won the Mid-American Conference at 149 pounds. Komara is seeded 28th.

Senior Colin McCracken, who placed second in the MAC Championships at 184 pounds, also earned a spot at nationals. McCracken is seeded 32nd.

“I’m very excited to get out there,” McCracken said. “I know this will be my last tournament ever, so I’m going to go out there and enjoy every moment of it.”

McCracken wrestled in the championships last year but couldn’t secure a win. He hopes to change the outcome this time and start the tournament on the right foot.

“Last year I made it and went 0-2,” McCracken said. “I’d love to go there and win some matches and see what happens. I’m blessed to have made it and hope to continue my successful season.”

Coach Jim Andrassy sounded confident when talking about the potential this week holds.

“Anything can happen in these tournaments,” Andrassy said. “McCracken has wrestled very strong this year and is in a position to end his career on a very special note.”

Andrassy also commented on the seeding of both his wrestlers and how that’ll impact the tournament.

“Seeding can’t matter at this point,” Andrassy said. “Over the years we have seen guys with low seeds knock the top wrestlers off and finish top three. You may need a little luck, but seeding doesn’t matter when everyone is this good.”

McCracken will handle himself and practice for such a big event in the way he would any other.

“I’ll have practice every day this week and stick to what I’ve done all year,” McCracken said. “I’ll continue to wrestle mentally smart and stay in the right mindset. I need to eat smart and keep my body healthy to compete at the highest level.”

McCracken holds a 16-9 overall record going into the tournament.

Kody Komara has been the Cinderella story of the season for Kent State, he is on a six-match win streak and holds a 16-11 overall season record.

Komara was Kent State’s only champion at the MAC Championships.

“Komara has been working extremely hard,” Andrassy said. “Every day he’s looking to get better and continue his run. Most importantly, he mentally wrestles smart and takes advantage of the smallest mistakes opponents have made.”

Komara will try to continue his win streak at the tournament.

“Kody has caught fire recently,” Andrassy said. “Komara and McCracken both have a chance to do something great. Both are capable of knocking off some of these top wrestlers and making a run.”

Komara and McCracken both look to continue their outstanding senior season and knock off some of the nation’s best wrestlers.

Noah Keeney is a sports reporter. Contact him at [email protected].