MAC Wrestling Weekend Preview - Nov. 16th

Updated 11/16/2013

Here is a look at this weekend's MAC wrestling action.

Central Michigan:
Chippewas to wrestle in EMU Duals
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Central Michigan travels to Ypsilanti Saturday for the Eastern Michigan Duals/Open.  CMU will battle Drexel (11:30 a.m.) and No. 6 Oregon State (1:30 p.m.) Saturday  as a part of the Eastern Michigan duals, while 16 wrestlers will compete in the Open Tournament.
Follow the Action:  Fans can watch Friday night’s dual live through the CMU Sports Zone (Subscription required). Live stats will be available through and live updates will be tweeted from the Chippewas’ official Twitter account @CMUWrestling.
Horan Wins MSU Open:  Sophomore 141-pounder Zach Horan, coming off a redshirt season, opened his season with five-straight victories last weekend at the MSU Open to claim the open division title. Horan moved up to the 141 weight class this season after claiming the Mid-American Conference title at 133 pounds his freshman season in 2011-12.
Ottinger Moves Up:  Junior Mike Ottinger, a two-time MAC champ and NCAA qualifier at 165 pounds, made his debut at 174 pounds last weekend at the MSU Open, posting a 4-1 mark and a third-place finish. Ottinger earned his 50th career victory with a 5-4 decision over Navy’s Mathew Miller.
Eastern Michigan:
Wrestling Set to Host EMU Open and EMU Duals
Eagles will host EMU Duals on mats 1-7 and EMU Open on mats 8-14 in Bowen Field House
YPSILANTI, MIch. -- The Eastern Michigan University wrestling squad will open its 2013-14 dual slate Saturday, Nov. 16, as it plays host to 21 different universities between the EMU Duals and the EMU Open. For the first time in program history, Eastern will run two tournaments simultaneously in Bowen Field House, with both starting at 10 a.m.
The Eagles' first dual of the day will be against Tiffin, starting at 10 a.m. before the Green and White takes on Gardner-Webb at 11:30 a.m. EMU will kick off the afternoon taking on Drexel at 1 p.m. and finishing the day with Clarion at 2:30 p.m. The EMU Dual will be conducted on mats 1-7, while the EMU Open will be on mats 8-14. Since the 2005-06 season, Eastern holds a combined 8-3-1 record over its competition this weekend, having lost only to Clarion in the past eight seasons.
JOSEPH TAKES THIRD AT MSU: Redshirt-senior Phillip Joseph notched a third-place finish at the MSU Open, Saturday, Nov. 9. The Lapeer, Mich. native had a bye in the first round before clinching two victories by decision. The quarterfinals of the 184 lb. weight class would be an early season Mid-American Conference matchup between Joseph and Central Michigan's Craig Kelliher and Joseph earned the 7-2 decision over his MAC foe before falling in the semifinals to Ohio State's Kenny Courts by decision. The redshirt-senior went on to notch a third-place finish in the first tournament of the season for Eastern.
THE BATTLE AT 165 LBS.: Fans would see a battle between three different Eagles in the 165 lb. weight class at the MSU Open as Dean Vettese, Devan Marry and Austin Geerlings all faced off against one teammate en route to the finals. Marry and Vettese would face off in the semifinals after winning three-straight bouts as unattached wrestlers. Vetesse notched a 10-1 major decision over his teammate, which would send him to the finals. Marry would see his second teammate of the tournament in a bout that would determine the third and fourth-place finishers as Geerlings fell to Findlay's Bradley Metz in the semifinals. Geerlings clinched a fall over Marry in 6:59 to take home the third-place finish, while Marry suffered the loss, earning a fourth-place finish on the day.
VICTORY TO VETTESE: Freshman Dean Vettese claimed his first tournament victory for the Green and White as he went undefeated through the entire MSU Open as an unattached wrestler. The Rochester, Mich. native earned a bye in the first round before securing a fall over Findlay's John Belcher in 2:57 in his first collegiate bout. The freshman went on to defeat Notre Dame Ohio's Tyler Hardke in a 10-3 decision in the quarterfinal before meeting up with teammate Devan Marry in the semifinals. Vetesse notched a 10-1 major decision over his teammate and completed his perfect outing with a 6-2 decision over Findlay's Brian Metz in the finals of the 165 lb. weight class in the freshman/sophomore division.
RANKED IN THE MAC: The redshirt-senior duo of Nick Whitenburg and Phillip Joseph have earned top-four rankings in the MAC for the month of November. After finishing third at the MSU Open, Joseph is ranked third in the 184 lb. weight class, while Whitenburg is ranked second at 197 lbs.
SCOUTING CLARION: The Eagles dropped a 21-10 road contest to Clarion, Nov. 18, 2012 as Jared Germaine's  major decision in the opening match would be one of only three matches the Green and White was able to secure on the afternoon. EMU would struggle through the match as two of its starters were sidelined with injuries in just the second dual of the season. Phillip Joseph and Jacob Dorulla were the only other Eagles to earn wins against Clarion a year ago, as Joseph clinched a major decision at 184 lbs. and Dorulla grabbed a decision at 165 lbs. The Golden Eagles return three starters from last year's lineup as Tyler Bedelyon and Ryan Darch each earned decisions over Eastern just a season ago. Clarion's Nick Milano will also return to the lineup after suffering a loss to Dorulla last season.
Eastern holds a slight 4-3-1 margin over Clarion as the Eagles post a 2-1-1 record at home against the Golden Eagles and a 2-2 record on the road since the 2005-06 season. EMU's last victory over the Golden Eagles came on Jan. 25, 2012 when they Eagles clinched a 25-12 victory. Then-No. 19 redshirt-sophomore Jared Germaine helped lead the Green and White to an early 12-0 advantage as he pinned Clarion's Trey Hicks, earning a quick six points for the Eagles in the 125 lb. weight class. Khodor Hoballah and Nick Whitenburg would add three points of their own as they each notched decisions in their respective weight classes.
SCOUTING DREXEL: This will be the first meeting between the Eagles and the Dragons. Drexel recorded an 8-12 overall record in the 2012-13 season and sent two wrestlers to the NCAA Championships. The Dragons return NCAA qualifier Brandon Palik who is 3-2 this season in the 197 lb. weight class, including a 14-1 major decision against South Dakota State. As a team, Drexel recorded 60 pins and 12 wrestlers recorded double-digit wins.
SCOUTING GARDNER-WEBB: The Runnin' Bulldogs post a 1-2 overall record on the season, having dropped duals to both West Virginia and Virginia. Gardner-Webb's only victory this season in dual matches came against Anderson (S.C.) when GWU beat the Trojans 49-9 at the Virginia Quad Meet. The Runnin' Bulldogs bring a young roster to the mats this season, as they have just one senior, one redshirt-junior and two "true" juniors, while they brought in 14 freshmen for the 2013-14 campaign.
The Eagles hold a 3-0 advantage over Gardner-Webb since the 2005-06 season. The last time these two teams met on the mat was Jan. 15, 2011 when the two squared off at the Wendy's Duals in Ashland, Ohio. The Eagles took home a 43-3 victory over the Runnin' Bulldogs as Gardner-Webb's only victory came in the 141 lb. weight class. Jared Germaine, Phillip Joseph and Nick Whitenburg all earned victories in their respective bouts, as Germaine and Whitenburg each notched pins over their opponents.
SCOUTING TIFFIN: The EMU Duals will mark the first of the 2013-14 season for the Dragons as they participated in the Mercyhurst Open just a week ago. Tiffin posted a 6-7 record in the 2012-13 season and sent two wrestlers to the NCAA Division II Championships. The Dragons return All-American heavyweight Kevin Christman who placed seventh overall in the NCAA Championships last season.
Since the 2005-06 season, Eastern holds a 1-0 advantage over the Dragons of Tiffin University, with the Green and White's win coming on Jan. 29, 2011 at the Eastern Duals. The Eagles allowed Tiffin to take just two bouts by decision as Seth Schaner earned a major decision and Mike LeHolm notched a decision. EMU went on to defeat the Dragons 39-6 in its only meeting.
UP NEXT: The Green and White will travel to East Lansing, Mich. for the second time this year. This trip, the Eagles dual against the Spartans of Michigan State. The dual is slated to start at 8 p.m. at Jenison Field House. 
Kent State:
Three Dual Meets and Eastern Michigan Open Await Flashes Saturday 
Kent State heads to Eastern Michigan's Bowen Field House Saturday for three dual meets and the EMU Open.  Twenty eight Golden Flashes will make the trip as the dual meets and tournament will occur simultaneously on seven mats.
After dropping three duals against Top 25 opponents on Sunday (Virginia Tech, Rider Virginia), the Golden Flashes will be tested again in Ypsilanti, this time by No. 20 Michigan.
The open tournament begins at 9 a.m., while Kent State's first dual begins at 10 a.m. against Gardner-Webb (1-2).  The Flashes take on the Wolverines immediately after at 11:30 a.m. and get a small break before facing Campbellsville (4-0) at 2:30 p.m.
Since Head Coach Jim Andrassy's third season (2005-06), the Golden Flashes have gone 109-40-1 in dual meets.
In the Rankings:  The first Mid-American Conference rankings of the regular season were released on Wednesday as five Flashes were recognized.  Sophomore 157-pounder Ian Miller earned the No. 2 nod, while junior 174-pounder Caleb Marsh was No. 3.  Sophomore 133-pounder Mack McGuire, junior 141-pounder Tyler Small and sophomore 184-pounder Sam Wheeler all claimed No. 4 spots.
According to this week's polls, seven Flashes are in the Top 30. McGuire is No. 27, Small is No. 27, sophomore 149-pounder Michael DePalma is No. 26, Miller is No. 13, Marsh is No. 23, Wheeler is No. 25 and sophomore 197-pounder Cole Baxter jumped into the No. 30 spot.  Baxter also made his first appearance in Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine's Top 20 this week at No. 18.
Latest Wrestling Blog: The Transition form High School to College Wrestling (Tommy Zeigler)
Wheeler will try to keep his perfect start (3-0) intact. McGuire, Marsh, Miller and Baxter all went 2-1 at the Hokie Duals.  Baxter was competing in his first collegiate duals, while Wheeler (184) and Marsh (174) competed in new weight classes for the first time in dual competition.  In the open tournament, Nate Skonieczny will look to extend a streak top five finishes.  Skonieczny is already 14-3 following a fourth place at the Clarion Open and fifth place at the Hokie Open.
Up Next:  The Golden Flashes will compete in the Navy Classic Saturday, Nov. 23, looking repeat as tournament champions. 
Northern Illinois;
Huskies Face Ranked Foes at EMU Duals
Sixth-ranked Oregon State, #14 Michigan highlight tough weekend for NIU
DeKALB, Ill. - The Northern Illinois University wrestling team heads into dual action this weekend when they battle #14 Michigan, #6 Oregon State, Clarion and Findlay at the EMU Duals in Ypsilanti, Mich.  The duals start at 9 a.m. CT. Meanwhile, several other Huskies will be competing in the EMU Open that same day.
"We are entering our first outing in dual meet orientation," said NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig. "We have competed in two elite opens the past two weekends and they are ready to work as a team. They understand that each individual effort will be huge for us as we take the mats and undergo this week's challenge. We are looking forward to competing hard, seven minutes at a time."
Following a weekend where they got five placewinners at the MSU Open, NIU returns to the Great Lakes State this weekend to face some of the best programs regionally and nationally. Between the Huskies' four opponents, they combined to send 20 wrestlers to the national tournaments last season.
Saturday marks the fifth time - and the first since the 2005-06 season - that the Huskies and Wolverines will meet on the mat, with UM taking each of the previous four meetings. Additionally, NIU is 0-1 all-time against OSU, 1-0 against Clarion and 2-1 against Findlay.
In addition to the dual, eight Huskies will compete in the open tournament. Of that group, five will wrestle in the open division and three in the fresh/soph division.
Live results will be available on (for open tournament results, click here).
Saturday's Dual Lineup
125: Braun Marquez (2-2) OR Nick Harrison (5-4)
133: Nick Smith (0-0)
141: Tyler Argue (5-3) OR Kevin Fanta (4-2)
149: Gabe Morse (2-2)
157: #20 Andrew Morse (9-3)
165: Sam Bennett (7-5) OR Trace Engelkes (4-3)
174: Billy Chancey (5-4)
184: Caleb Busson (3-4)
197: Shawn Scott (6-3)
285: Jared Torrence (6-4)
Saturday's Open Competitors
125: Derek Elmore*
133: Jordan Northrup^
141: Sal Annoreno^
149: None
157: Matt Smith
165: Shaun'Qae McMurtry
174: None
184: None
197: Parker Settecase
285: Arthur Bunce, Jake Cochrane^
*Competing unattached
^Competing in fresh/soph division
Scouting the Field:  The Huskies start dual action this weekend with a solid quartet of matches. First up on the day will be Michigan, who return four NCAA qualifiers from a season ago for 2013-14. Oregon State, the second opponent for the day, return all three of their All-Americans, including current top-rated 149-pounder Scott Sakaguchi. Meanwhile, Clarion - one of the premier programs in  Pennsylvania - feature 2013 NCAA Championships qualifier Tyler Bedelyon and Findlay returns two Division II nationals qualifiers.
National Exposure:  Following some impressive wins over the weekend, sophomore Andrew Morse has broken into the top 20 at 157 pounds in two national polls. The Alto, Mich., native ranks 12th in the Amateur Wrestling News/ ratings and 20th in the InterMat poll.
Teacher vs. Student:   NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig will see a familiar face across the mat in Saturday's final dual, as he will take on his alma mater and his former head coach in Findlay's Shawn Nelson. A graduate of UF in 2000, Ludwig was a three-time NAIA All-American with the Oilers and still ranks seventh in career wins (108).
Only the Best:  The Huskies schedule the next two Saturdays will be plenty difficult, as they face four teams ranked in the Top 26 of the InterMat rankings. This weekend, NIU faces #6 Oregon State and #14 Michigan. They follow that up by hosting #20 Northern Iowa and #26 North Dakota State the next weekend in the Northern Duals.
Homecoming Weekends:  With last weekend's and this weekend's meets in the state of Michigan, seven Huskies - Arthur Bunce (Munith), Mason Cleaver (Holly), Andrew Morse (Alto), Gabe Morse (Alto), Shawn Scott (Holly), Matt Smith (Paw Paw) and Nick Smith (Ida) will get the opportunity to compete once again in their home state. In fact, Michigan is the second-most represented state on the NIU roster, trailing only Illinois.
Up Next:   The Huskies opens their home schedule next Saturday when they host MAC rival Northern Iowa and North Dakota State in the Northern Duals. The triangular starts at 10 a.m. in Victor E. Court.
Old Dominion:
Wrestling Travels to Raleigh for the Wolfpack Open
NORFOLK, Va. – The Old Dominion University wrestling team will compete in the Wolfpack Open this Sunday, Nov. 17 in Raleigh, N.C.
The event is hosted by NC State and begins at 9 a.m. at the Carmichael Gymnasium. The Wolfpack Open will feature most of the top college wrestling programs in the Southeast, with more than 250 wrestlers competing in the 10 weight classifications.
A total of 14 teams will be represented, including North Carolina, North Carolina State, Duke, Maryland, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Campbell, Davidson, George Mason, ODU and more.
ODU Wrestlers competing at the NC State Open:
Kevin Beazley (RFr., Howell, Mich.) – 197 pounds. Placed second at last year’s Wolfpack Open while competing unattached. Beazley won the 2013 Greco-Roman International Wrestling Federation Junior World Team Trials.
Josh Clark (RSo., Chesterfield, Va.) – 149 pounds. Went 2-2 at the National Collegiate Open last season.
Austin Coburn (RSo., Midlothian, Va.) – 174 pounds. Placed 2nd at the Citadel Open and 4th at the Hokie Open this year. Finished fourth at the CAA’s last season.
Nathan Coburn (Jr., Alexandria, Va.) – 133 pounds. Was a 2013 University Nationals All-American in Greco Roman.
Billy Curling (RSr., Chesapeake, Va.) – 174 pounds. Qualified for the NCAA Championships last season after winning the CAA Championships at 174. Started this season 2-1 after defeating UNC’s Scott Marmoll.
Jack Dechow (RFr., Richmond, Ill.) – 184 pounds. Already this season Dechow has defeated two nationally ranked opponents- UNC’s No. 16 Alex Utley and Wisconsin’s No. 9 Jackson Hein (major decision). Finished last season 34-12 while competing unattached.
Scott Festejo (SR., Long Brach, N.J.) – 133 pounds. Qualified for the NCAA Championships two seasons ago. Festejo went 5-0 in CAA action last season. Started this year with a win against UNC’s Troy Heilmann.
Devin Geoghegan (RSo., Kenilworth, N.J.) – 157 pounds. Started this season with a 6-0 decision win against Rider’s Andrew Reca.
Dillon Geoghegan (RSo., Kenilworth, N.J.) – 165 pounds. Defeated UNC’s Jake Crawford 6-4 via decision to begin this year.
Michael Hayes (RFr., Stafford, Va.) – 133 pounds. Led the team in tech falls last season while competing unattached. Also tied for second-most major decisions on the team with five.
Jacob Henderson (RJr., Toledo, Ohio) – 197 pounds. Finished last season 26-14 and took first place at the Clarion Open. Started this year with a 7-3 decision win against UNC’s Frank Abbondanza.
Marcus Johnson (RJr., Norfolk, Va.) – 174 pounds. Capped off last season with a second place finish at the Brute Invitational.
Jacob Kingett (RSo., Woodbridge, Va.) – 149 pounds. Kingett recorded three major decisions and two falls last season while going 2-2 at the National Collegiate Open.
Chris Mecate (RSo., Highland, Calif.) – 141 pounds. Qualified for the NCAA Championships last season as a RFr. and finished the year 40-11. Started this season off with a 8-0 major decision win against Wisconsin’s No. 10 Jesse Thielke and a 6-3 decision win against Rider’s Paul Kirchner.
Alexander Richardson (So., Jersey City, N.J.) – 149 pounds. Qualified for the NCAA Championships last season as a true freshman and finished the year 29-15. Begins this season 3-0 after defeating all three opponents (Rider, UNC and Wisconsin) at the Hokie Duals.
Lucas Ryan (RFr., Mount Jackson, Va.) – 285 pounds. Finished last season 21-14 while taking second at the Clarion Open. Starts this season 7-4 after placing at the Citadel Open.
Buddy Scarborough (RSo., Virginia Beach, Va.) – 125 pounds. Begins this season 6-4 and took 6th at the Hokie Open. Placed fourth at last year’s Wolfpack Open.
Adrin Taylor (RJr., Norfolk, Va.) – 165 pounds. Won six straight matches last season to finish in fourth place at the Clarion Open.
Matt Tourdot (RJr., Sparta, Wisc.) – 285 pounds. Begins this season 2-1 after defeating UNC’s Bob Coe 8-0 via major decision. Finished last season 23-19 while placing third at the CAA Tournament.
Tristan Warner (RJr., Mechanicsburg, Pa.) – 157 pounds. Started this season 2-1 after defeating Rider’s Wayne Stinson 16-4 via major decision and UNC’s Robert Henderson 8-3 via decision.
Zach Wilson (Fr., Bluffton, Ohio) – 157 pounds. Placed three times at the Ohio state tournament, claiming fourth as a sophomore, fourth as a junior, and fifth as a senior.
Wrestlers competing unattached:
Michael Doherty (Fr., Moyock, N.C.) – 285 pounds. Began this season defeating Thomas Turpin 3-2. Finished his prep senior season as a runner-up at the state tournament.
Austin Eads (Fr., Lee’s Summit, Mo.) – 157 pounds. Starts this season 7-4 after winning with two falls and two major decisions.
Kevin Johnson (RSo., Woodbridge, Va.) – 149 pounds. Began this season defeating Kent State’s Nathan Valentine 3-2 via decision. Is a two-time state runner-up in Virginia.
Jordan Marshall (Fr., Bradford, Ohio) – 157 pounds. Captured a state championship during his junior season in high school.
Jake Velarde (Fr., Poulsbo, Wash.) – 141 pounds. Started this season with three straight wins, including 21 points and a fall in the Citadel Open.