Road Contests Close Regular Season

February 19, 2004

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The 17th-ranked West Virginia (8-4, 5-0) wrestling team closes out the regular season with two Eastern Wrestling League road contests this weekend.

On Friday, Feb. 20, the Mountaineers travel to Edinboro (8-3, 5-0) for a meet with the defending EWL Tournament Champions. Two days later on Feb. 22, WVU will battle Cleveland State (9-8, 3-3) to end the 2003-04 campaign.

The EWL regular season title is on the line Friday night at 7:30 p.m., in McComb Fieldhouse as both teams enter with undefeated league records. The Fighting Scots gave West Virginia all it could handle a year ago, but the Mountaineers held on, 19-14, in a thrilling regular season EWL contest. Edinboro qualified eight wrestlers to the 2003 NCAAs and six return this season for the Scots. EU holds a slight edge 10-9-0, over WVU all-time.

“We have had some adversity this year and our guys have stepped up and performed well but this weekends matches concern me,” says WVU head coach Craig Turnbull. “There will be some even up matches that could swing either way as Edinboro will be a good challenge for us.”

The final meet of the year takes place in Cleveland, Ohio, on Sunday, Feb. 22, at 2 p.m., against EWL foe Cleveland State. CSU is coming off a record-breaking season that sent six wrestlers to the NCAAs, as three qualifiers return for 2003-04. WVU leads the series 16-10-0 against CSU. These two met earlier this season at the NWCA National Duals where West Virginia pulled off a 21-16 victory.

“Cleveland State also presents a challenge as our meet earlier this year came down to the heavyweight match,” says Turnbull. “We are going to have to scrap and battle really hard to win in either of these final two meets.”

Following this weekend’s contests, WVU will head to Bloomsburg, Pa., for the 2004 EWL Wrestling Championships. Bloomsburg will host the tournament that runs March 6-7 at Nelson Field House.

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