Flashes Top No. 9 Lehigh for Third Place at Virginia Duals
HAMPTON, Va. - After a respectable showing against No. 2 Penn State, the Kent State wrestling team topped Lehigh 18-16 for third place Saturday at the Virginia Duals inside the Hampton Coliseum. The Golden Flashes (7-5) won four matches in a 27-15 semifinal loss to the Nittany Lions and got bonus points from Matt Cathell and Ross Tice to make the difference in a split of 10 matches against the Mountain Hawks.
"We beat two ranked teams and we gave Penn State the hardest battle they've had all year," Head Coach Jim Andrassy said. "I think we're as good as (runner-up) Michigan, we just didn't get a chance to wrestle them here."
Junior Nic Bedelyon gave the Flashes an early lead against Lehigh with an 8-5 win over Mitch Berger. Two matches later, KSU got a key victory from juniors Chase Skonieczny (141), who jumped out to a 5-0 lead and "literally hung on for the win," according to Andrassy, referring to Skonieczny's leg riding from the top position.
"Chase holding on for that win and Ross Tice getting a tech fall is what really helped us tonight."
Tice (165) worked his tilt to perfection, using it in all three periods in a 17-2 technical fall over Josh Fitch. One match earlier, Cathell scored a 9-0 major decision over Brian Tanen and the Flashes held a 15-6 lead after six bouts.
Dustin Kilgore (197) extended the lead to 18-13, with a convincing 6-2 win over Joe Kennedy. Lehigh's last hope was for its No. 1 ranked heavyweight, Zach Rey, to record a pin at heavyweight.
With Brendan Barlow standing in the way, Rey was content with a 5-3 decision victory. Earlier in the day, Barlow upset No. 6 Cameron Wade of Penn State 10-5.
"Brendan went hard for seven minutes," Andrassy said. "He frustrated Wade and capitalized on his mistakes. He also did a good job against Rey."
Kent State captured the final three matches against the Nittany Lions, including a second period pin from Kilgore. Sophomore Casey Newburg (184) earned a 6-2 win over Nick Fischer and Tice knocked off Jake Kemerer 8-2.
Bedelyon led after the first period of his match, but got caught in a cement mixer and was pinned in the second period by Brad Pataky.
Redshirt freshman Brandonn Johnson gave No. 2 Ed Ruth a tight battle. Johnson scored a first period takedown and a third period reversal.
Penn State went on to defeat Michigan 24-12 in the championship match. The Flashes' third place finish matched its highest showing in their history at the Virginia Duals.
The Golden Flashes return to action Jan. 15 at the Wendy's Duals in Ashland, which includes a match-up with Purdue.
"I think the improvement from our guys is really going to start to show," Andrassy said of the upcoming schedule.
Penn State 27, Kent State 15
125: Brad Pataky (PS) pin Nic Bedelyon, 4:02
133: Andrew Long (PS) dec. Tyler Small, 6-1
141: Andrew Alton (PS) pin Chase Skonieczny, 3:32
149: Frank Molinaro (PS) maj. dec. Marcel Clopton, 8-0
157: David Taylor (PS) tech fall Matt Cathell, 19-4
165: Ross Tice (KS) dec. Jake Kemerer, 8-2
174: Ed Ruth (PS) dec. Brandonn Johnson, 11-8
184: Casey Newburg (KS) dec. Nick Fischer, 6-2
197: Dustin Kilgore (KS) pinned Justin Ortega, 4:59
285: Brendan Barlow (KS) dec. Cameron Wade, 10-5
Kent State 18, Lehigh 16
125: Nic Bedelyon (KS) dec. Mitch Berger, 8-5
133: Frank Cagnina (L) dec. Tyler Small, 8-1
141: Chase Skonieczny (KS) dec. Stephen Dutton, 7-4
149: Joey Napoli (L) dec. Marcel Clopton, 4-1
157: Matt Cathell (KS) maj. dec. Brian Tannen, 9-0
165: Ross Tice (KS) tech fall Josh Fitch, 17-2
174: Austin Meys (L) maj. dec. Brandonn Johnson, 10-2
184: Robert Hamlin (L) dec. Casey Newburg, 10-4
197: Dustin Kilgore (KS) dec. Joe Kennedy, 6-2
285: Zach Rey (L) dec. Brendan Barlow, 5-3