Golden Bears Go 3-1 At Green Terror Duals

November 23, 2013

WESTMINSTER, Md. - The Golden Bears completed a busy week on the mats by going 3-1 at the Green Terror Duals at McDaniel College in Westminster, Md. on Saturday. Tech moved to 7-3 on the year.

WVU Tech opened the day with a 24-18 victory over the University of Scranton. At 133 lbs Jeff Bayonne scored a fall in his first action of the year. At 149 lbs. Senior John Walters used a number of takedowns and turns to earn a technical fall, and Co-Captain Dirk Ponchak piggy backed off of that momentum and scored bonus points of his own with a major decision. At 174 lbs. former Point Pleasant State Champion Zach Nibert made his debut in a WVU Tech singlet a memorable one, using his crab ride to convert a roll through half for the fall. At 184 lbs. Tola Morakinyo jumped out to a quick lead and nearly had his opponent pinned early, but had to settle for a regular decision.

In the second match of the day the Golden Bears reversed a 2012 loss to the University of Maryland Baltimore County, and rolled to a 38-12 victory. Jasi Coureur was awarded a forfeit at 125 lbs, John Walters scored his fourth first-period fall of the season, and Dirk Ponchak used a number of leg attacks and turns to roll up a technical fall. Colton Rowe scored a fall at 165 lbs. off of a nice throw to put his opponent directly on his back. At 174 lbs. Kyle Sheppherd stayed unbeaten on the year earning a major decision. "Terrible" Terry Nance earned his second pin in as many days with a thunderous throw, and Alex Lecroy moved up to heavyweight for the 4th time this season and earned his third victory of the season at that weight.

Against McDaniel the result of the dual was in doubt until heavyweight. Jasi Coureur earned a 2nd forfeit victory on the day. After three losses, Dirk Ponchak used several explosive double legs to take the decision at 157. At 174 lbs. Zach Nibert earned his second first period fall of the day to bring the Golden Bears back within striking distance. At 184 lbs. Tola Morakinyo put together a number of explosive takedowns to earn a major decision and keep the rally going. Unfortunately Tech wrestlers fell in the final two bouts to give the host Green Terror a 28-19 win.

In the day's final dual meet Tech wrestled an undermanned Southern Virginia University squad and rolled to a 52-0 win, their second shut out of the season. After a pair of forfeits, Conner Russ converted a single leg takedown into an armbar and then a quick fall. At 149 lbs. John "J-Dub" Walters earned a bit of revenge over SVU's Shawn Porter, the wrestler who defeated Walters in the final of the 2012 NWCA Mid-Atlantic Regional. This time the result was never in doubt as J-Dub displayed a newfound style of aggressive leg attacks to cruise to a lop-sided decision victory. At 157 lbs. Ponchak concluded a strong day of performances with a fall. Colton Rowe earned a major decision at 165 lbs., and Kyle Shepherd earned a forfeit at 174 lbs. Tola Morakinyo moved to 8-2 on the year with a first period fall, and "Terrible" Terry Nance won a 3-1 decision at 197 lbs. SVU forfeited the final bout.

Said Coach Gardner about the team's performance "We had a physically draining week. Make weight three times, traveling in vans for hours at a time, wrestling in six duals in a week; these things are a challenge both physically and mentally for student-athletes. I wanted to challenge their make-up, to see how they would respond under circumstances that were less than ideal for performing at your peak. I was pleased for the most part with what I saw from this group of kids. We still need to move our feet more and to attack earlier and more frequently in matches, and there are a few other areas we need to tweak, but overall I can see we are progressing. We are now on break until next Sunday. This is a time for them to recover both physically and emotionally, and after a week of lower volume training, they should be ready to come back and make even greater gains going into the second part of the season."

Tech will host Tennessee Temple on December 6, and then travel to Southern Virginia on December 7 to participate in the annual Turkey Bowl tournament.

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