Spartans Come Out on Top

By Daniel Whitehead
WVU Sports Information Office

January 14, 2011

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. – In front of a record crowd of 3,206 fans for the inaugural “Beauty and the Beast” event, the West Virginia University wrestling team was defeated by a score of 21-18 to the visiting Michigan State Spartans.

With the win, the Spartans improve to 8-1 on the season while the Mountaineers fall to 4-4 in dual meet matches. Ahead 18-15, WVU’s heavyweight wrestler Philip Mandzik competed with Spartan Joe Rizqallah, who was able to pin Mandzik in 4:50 to lift his team to the 21-18 victory.

“I thought the wrestling match was very hard-fought,” says WVU coach Craig Turnbull. “We were in a position to win throughout most of the matchup, so I’m disappointed that we didn’t, but I think we’ll come out of it much more determined to learn from it and grow.”

West Virginia jumped to a quick 3-0 lead as No. 23 sophomore Shane Young defeated MSU’s Eric Olanowski by decision, 7-2. Young earned three takedowns in the match and only allowed two escape points for Olanowski.

Redshirt freshman Nathan Pennesi, ranked No. 14 in the country, extended the Mountaineer lead to 8-0 by defeating Spartan freshman Levi Stace by technical fall in 4:16 by a score of 16-0. Pennesi grabbed a quick takedown early in the opening period before earning three sets of three near-fall points for an 11-0 lead after the first period.

WVU true freshman Michael Morales earned a takedown and two near-fall points just before the end of the first period en route to a 10-0 major decision victory over MSU senior Joel Trombly, enlarging WVU’s lead to 12-0. Morales grabbed two more near-fall points in the second period after receiving riding time for the majority of the period.

The matchup turned in Michigan State’s favor when MSU’s No. 33-ranked Dan Osterman pinned redshirt senior Brandon Rader in 3:53 to cut the margin to 12-6. Ahead 5-4 in the second period, Rader was forced underneath Osterman after rolling around a few moments and Osterman was able to earn the fall.

“It was uncharacteristic of Rader to be in that position and I feel for him,” Turnbull says. “He’s struggling to get back to where he wants to be. He’ll work his tail off and continue to get better.”

At 157 pounds, MSU’s Sean McMurray earned a win over redshirt junior Ryan Goodman by a 5-2 decision to make the score 12-9 for West Virginia. After a McMurray takedown early in the opening period, Goodman earned two reversal points before McMurray could escape the ring.

Redshirt senior Donnie Jones earned a quick takedown in the first period before Ben Boudro earned an escape moments later. Jones had another takedown before the opening period expired on the way to a 8-3 decision victory.

Making his first start as a Mountaineer, recent Oklahoma State transfer Alex Meade fell to Michigan State’s No. 20-ranked Curran Jacobs. Meade earned a quick takedown before Jacobs received two reversal points. The duo exchanged escape points in the second period before Jacobs was able to earn a takedown in the third period to pick up a 9-5 victory by decision and cut the Mountaineer lead to 15-12.

“Meade has practiced 1-2 times this past month,” Turnbull says. “You have to give him credit for his competitiveness and his wanting to win. He was running on fumes, but he gave it his best shot. Now we’re one match closer to getting him at full speed.”

WVU redshirt junior Matt Ryan grabbed a quick takedown over Michigan State’s No. 30 Ian Hinton before Hinton earned an escape point. In the second period, Ryan salvaged an escape point as the pair spent the majority of the period grappling hands. Hinton earned an escape early in the third period, but Ryan was able to ride the time out for the victory, boosting the Mountaineer lead to 18-12 with two matches to go.

WVU’s Kyle Rooney wrestled around during the first period with No. 16 Tyler Dickenson as neither scored points. Dickenson scored an escape early in the second period as Rooney was unable to earn equalizing points. After another escape, Dickenson managed to grab two near-fall points as he nearly pinned Rooney in the final period. Dickenson ultimately won by decision, 4-1.

“The event was very worthwhile and it turned out well,” Turnbull says. “I was a little skeptical at first, but it exceeded my expectations. It created interest as we usually have to fight to get television here, but I thought this brought in fans who were curious to see how it all would turn out. Hopefully they saw things that they would like to come back to watch both teams.”

The Mountaineers travel to Bloomsburg and Clarion next weekend to begin action in the Eastern Wrestling League. WVU will grapple with Bloomsburg Fri., Jan. 21, at 7 p.m.

WVU vs. Michigan State
125: No. 23 Shane Young (WVU)(So., 20-6) dec. Eric Olanowski (Jr., 11-10), 7-2
133: No. 14 Nathan Pennesi (WVU)(r-Fr., 17-4) tech fall Levi Stace (r-Fr., 0-1),16-0 (4:16)
141: Michael Morales (WVU)(Fr., 11-7) maj. dec. Joel Trombly (Sr., 1-11), 10-0
149:.No. 33 Dan Osterman (MSU)(So., 17-4) won by fall No. 31 Brandon Rader (r-Sr., 6-7), 3:53
157: Sean McMurray (MSU)(Fr., 10-5) dec. Ryan Goodman (r-Jr., 9-11), 2-5
165: Donnie Jones (WVU)(r-Sr., 10-3) dec. Ben Boudro (Sr., 10-7), 8-3
174: No. 20 Curran Jacobs (MSU)(18-4), dec. Alex Meade (r-So., 0-1), 5-9
184: No. 21 Matt Ryan (WVU)(r-Jr., 13-3) dec. No. 30 Ian Hinton (Jr., 10-5), 3-2
197: No. 16 Tyler Dickenson (MSU)(Jr.,17-7) dec. Kyle Rooney (Sr., 5-7), 1-4
HWT: Joe Rizqallah (MSU)(So., 13-7) won by fall Philip Mandzik (Jr., 7-13) , 4:50

Return to the WV-Mat front page