No. 11 Wrestlers Post 4-0 Record at Regional Duals
01/26/13...If anyone thought there would be a letdown after Friday's win over fourth-ranked Newberry (SC) College, the 11th-ranked Mountain Cat wrestlers answered that question. Pitt-Johnstown posted three more victories on Saturday by a combined total of 100-21 to finish the 2013 Super Region I Duals in Newberry, SC with a perfect 4-0 record. The Mountain Cats extended their unbeaten streak to 10 and improved to 11-2.
Pitt-Johnstown opened Saturday's wrestling by winning nine of the 10 bouts in a 37-4 win over Limestone (SC) College. Eighth-ranked Dave Fogle (Summerhill, Pa.) (133 lbs.) and Josh Duplin (Johnstown, Pa.) (285 lbs.) each won by fall, while eighth-ranked Travis McKillop (Lower Burrell, Pa.) (184 lbs.) earned his third technical fall victory of the year by handing Blake Steiert a 17-1 loss. The Mountain Cats also got major decision wins from Evan Link (Cresson, Pa.) (125 lbs.) and Gary Lantz (Delta, Pa.) (174 lbs.) to help Pitt-Johnstown open-up a 31-0 lead.
It was more of the same for the Mountain Cats against Belmont Abbey (NC) College. After falling behind 3-0, Pitt-Johnstown won the next nine matches to post a 42-3 win. Fogle and McKillop both won by fall, and Cawley scored a 16-0 technical fall over Clemente Narviaz. The Mountain Cats also got forfeit victories by Bachman and Jacob Krupa (Bedford, Pa.) (285 lbs.) and an 18-10 major decision by Lantz over Joseph Maumoynier at 174 lbs.
Saturday's final match against No. 20 North-Carolina-Pembroke was a bit more challenging. Mike Williams, the nation's top-ranked wrestler at 174 lbs., gave UNC-Pembroke a 14-10 lead with a 9-0 major decision over Lantz. However, the Mountain Cats won the next three to secure a 21-14 win. McKillop recorded another tech fall. This time a 16-0 shutout over Jordan Ford that put Pitt-Johnstown in the lead for good. Nikos Garafola (Greensburg, Pa.) followed with a 4-3 decision, before Duplin's 2-1 overtime win over Chris Giddens set the final at 21-14.
All of the momentum stemmed from Friday's big win over fourth-ranked Newberry (SC) College. The Mountain Cats jumped on Newberry for an early double-digit lead. Link set the tone by upsetting fourth-ranked Jeff Vesta with a convincing 9-4 decision at 125 lbs., and Fogle scored a 9-3 decision over Nicholas Lankford at 133 lbs. to make it 6-0.
Pitt-Johnstown wasn't done there. At 141 lbs., Cawley pushed it out to 12-0 when he pinned fifth-ranked B.J. Young at 1:26.
Newberry cut its deficit to four with back-to back major decisions from eighth-ranked Derel Brown at 149 lbs. and fourth-ranked Taylor Knapp at 157 lbs., but the Mountain Cats answered to rebuild it to 15-8 when Keith Ryan (Shirleysburg, Pa.) used a third period takedown and riding time to knock-off fifth ranked Blake Ridenour, 6-3, in the 165 lb-bout.
After the Wolves got a 10-5 decision by Travis Sheehy's over Lantz at 174 lbs., McKillop defeated Mitch Brown, 8-1, at 184 lbs. to put Pitt-Johnstown in front 18-11.
Newberry wasn't done yet. The Wolves made it 18-14 when Joe Grisco held off Garafola, 12-8 at 197 lbs.
With just one bout left, it was up to Mountain Cat freshman heavyweight Duplin. Duplin got the job done with a 3-2 win over Robert Wade to secure Pitt-Johnstown's 21-14 victory. With the score knotted at two in the third period, Duplin rode out Wade for the extra point and the 3-2 win.
With the loss, Newberry slipped to 12-2.
The Mountain Cats travel to Mercyhurst College on Friday. Pitt-Johnstown will return home to host three straight duals meets beginning with Seton Hill University on February 6 at 7 p.m. in the Sports Center.