Northwestern wrestler Jason Tsirtsis set the bar incredibly high during his freshman season.

On March 22, Tsirtsis became the first freshman wrestler in Northwestern history to win an NCAA championship, earning a 3-1 overtime win over Oklahoma State’s Joshua Kindig in the 149-lb. title bout in Oklahoma City.

Earlier in March, Tsirtsis became the first Northwestern freshman to win a Big Ten wrestling championship, beating the conference’s top seed, Jake Sueflohn of Nebraska.

Tsirtsis, from Crown Point, Indiana, finished the season with a 32-3 record, winning his last 16 matches. InterMat named him the country’s Freshman of the Year, while the Big Ten named him the conference’s freshman of the year.

“I don’t think it’s hit me yet that I’m an NCAA champ,” Tsirtsis said. “I get to keep that claim for the rest of my life. It’s what you work for as a wrestler ever since you set your goals as a little kid.”

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