Upperweights Sweep Last Four Matches as Flashes Defeat Clarion 30-16
CLARION, Pa. – Kent State (14-5) ended the dual portion of its season on a high note, with a 30-16 victory over Clarion Friday night at Tippin Gym. With two starters out of the lineup and another wrestling up a weight class, the Golden Flashes trailed 16-14 after six matches.
The Golden Eagles recorded pins at 141 and 165 and looked ready to extend their lead at 174, before senior Ross Tice (Brookfield, Ohio) mounted a late comeback.
Moving up from his usual spot at 165, Tice trailed 7-3 in the third, before rallying for a 10-7 victory. A third period escape and stalling point narrowed the margin to 7-5 and with 25 seconds left, Tice scored a takedown quickly followed by back points. The win by Tice was the first of four straight by the Flashes to end the dual.
"Ross really went after him late and their guy was getting tired," Head Coach Jim Andrassy said. "He was nearly pinned earlier in the match, but he wrestled really hard tonight and things could have gotten interesting if he doesn't fight off his back."
The night started with senior Nic Bedelyon (Lewistown, Pa.) scoring a 21-4 technical fall. Bedelyon put Trey Hicks on his back three different times.
Junior Stevie Mitcheff (Lorain, Ohio) scored a key takedown in the third period to defeat Joe Waltko 8-5.
"Stevie wrestled well," Andrassy said. "He needs to correct a couple mistakes, but he's really made progress this year."
Momentum shifted when sophomore Tyler Small (Littlestown, Pa.) was cradled and pinned in the opening period by Tyler Bedelyon.
"Tyler looked flat tonight, almost like he was in a daze and I'm not sure why," Andrassy said.
Kent State answered with a pin of its own as freshman Ian Miller (Oak Harbor, Ohio) had a first period fall against Cameron Moran. Miller threw a half in during a mat return and dragged Moran back in bounds to flatten him. Miller leads the team with 11 pins on the year.
Senior Marcel Clopton (Shaker Hts., Ohio) moved up a weight to 157 and ran into No. 4 James Fleming, who claimed a 14-2 major decision.
The Eagles then took the lead when No. 5 Bekzod Abdurakhmonov pinned redshirt freshman Andrew Candiello (Pittsburgh, Pa.). An injury to Brandonn Johnson (Middletown, Md.) forced Tice to move up a weight, giving Candiello his first appearance in a college dual.
After Tice grabbed the lead back, junior Casey Newburg (Union, Ohio) tallied his ninth major decision of the season, an 11-2 win over Steven Cressley.
Junior Keith Witt (Oak Harbor, Ohio) sealed the team victory with a 10-6 win over Alex Thomas. Witt jumped out to an early 4-0 lead, following a quick takedown and tilt and never trailed.
Senior heavyweight Brendan Barlow (Westerville, Ohio) left no doubt about what was once a close dual, with a second period pin against Brandon Contreras.
The Golden Flashes now have two weeks to prepare for the 2012 Mid-American Conference Championships on March 4 in Athens.
"Our goal has been to win the MAC Tournament and we feel like we'll be healthy and ready for it."
Kent State 30 Clarion 16
125 - Nic Bedelyon (Kent State) over Trey Hicks
(Clarion) Tech Fall 21-4
133 – Stevie Mitcheff (Kent State) over Joe Waltko (Clarion) Dec. 8-5
141 - Tyler Bedelyon (Clarion) over Tyler Small (Kent State) Fall 1:34
149 –Ian Miller (Kent State) over Cameron Moran (Clarion) Fall 1:46
157 –James Fleming (Clarion) over Marcel Clopton (Kent State) Maj. Dec 14-2
165 –Bekzod Abdurakhmonov (Clarion) over Andy Candiello (Kent State) Fall 4:02
174 –Ross Tice (Kent State) over Nick Milano (Clarion) Dec. 10-7
184 –Casey Newburg (Kent State) over Steven Cressley (Clarion) Maj. Dec 11-2
197 –Keith Witt (Kent State) over Alex Thomas (Clarion) Dec 10-6
HWT - Brendan Barlow (Kent State) over Brandon Contreras (Clarion) Fall 4:24