WVU Tech Downs Penn State Mont Alto, 27-15

November 22, 2013

Senior Captain John Walters Earns 8-4 DecisionWESTMINSTER, Md. - WVU Tech wrestling rebounded from a disappointing performance on Tuesday evening to rally from a 12 point deficit against Penn State Mont Alto and earn themselves a 27-15 victory.

Held at Westminster High School, where head coach Sam Gardner taught for 9 years and coached the Owl wrestlers for 2, the Nittany Lions built a 12-0 lead after the first three matches on the strength of two decisions and a fall.

Senior Captain John Walters got Tech on the scoreboard with an 8-4 decision on the strength of a takedown and several turns from the top position. Dirk Ponchak improved to 5-1 on the season with a forfeit, and Colton Rowe earned his first career victory in front of friends and family in his home state on the strength of a six-point third period, winning a 14-9 decision.

Freshman and California native Kyle Sheppherd continued his torrid start to the season, moving to 6-0, in a physical 9-3 decision. Tola Morakinyo, from nearby Columbia, Md. scored his second fall in his young career in just 1:42 of the first period. Parkdale, Maryland's own "Terrible" Terry Nance sealed the victory with a thunderous first-period pin at 197 lbs., using a single leg attack and converting it to a lift and return straight to his opponent's back.

Said Coach Gardner about tonight's victory: "I like the fact that we were able to rebound from a poor performance, put it behind us, and get back to having the kinds of performances on the mat we are capable of. We got out of the box pretty slow in our first three matches, but the kids came on strong late in the periods to narrow the leads, which shows conditioning, spirit, and guts. We need to get on the offense more quickly in those bouts if we want to continue to grow as a team. Technically we are making some mistakes, and we could use better tactics, but our spirit and our toughness out on the mat were evident tonight. I can teach and they can hone technique, but competing with a fighter's spirit and being tough in difficult situations is something that supersedes technique and talent. We'll get back to work in the morning, get a good warm-up in, and get after it at McDaniel College."

The Golden Bears move to 4-2 on the season, and will return to competition Saturday, November 23rd, at the annual Sam Case Green Terror Duals hosted by McDaniel College.

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