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Monarchs Place Nine at Missouri Open

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: November 18, 2007
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Nov. 18, 2007

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COLUMBIA, Mo. -- The Monarchs had one champ and five runner-ups at the Missouri Open on Sunday. Old Dominion had the most finalists aside from the host team Missouri, including more than the nationally ranked Northwestern and Illinois programs. The tournament was the second tourney that included several nationally ranked teams and individuals and the Monarchs continue to impress. There were nine placewinners for the Monarchs including the heavyweight champion in the freshman/sophomore division. Roy Dragon III won the weight class, going 5-0 on the day. The five runner-ups were James Nicholson (125), Kyle Hutter (133), Ryan Williams (141), Kaylen Baxter (149) and Jesse Strawn (184).

"The guys competed against some tough competition today and they were all right there," said head coach Steve Martin. "This was another great opportunity for our wrestlers to get experience for the postseason and we had a good showing."

Results by weight class:

125: James Nicholson finished second at the 125 weight. Seeded number three in the weight class, he disposed of Billy Exline by an 11-3 major decision before taking on Richy Zuniga of the 2007 NAIA Champion Lindenwood University Lions. Zuniga was coming off 13-5 major decision over nationally ranked Missouri grappler John Olanowski, but Nicholson halted his momentum with a 5-2 win to slide into the title bout. He then found himself across the mat from Northwestern's Brandon Precin, ranked No. 11 in the country, but would have to settle for second in a tight 4-2 loss.

Billy Chamberlain also wrestled, but got an extremely tough draw at 125, with his first bout coming across from Precin. He was pinned in the second period, bumping him to the consolation bracket. He would capture a win against Byron Clark (Central Missouri) but then would have to face Olanowski, who toppled Chamberlain 5-2, ending the tourny for the redshirt freshman.

133: Kyle Hutter would capture another runner-up slot for ODU as he stormed into the title bout at 133 lbs. He tallied 15 points in two bouts before and a medical forfeit in the semifinals on his way to the championship. He toppled Keaton Baker (Central Missouri) in a 10-2 major decision and John Lloyd (Lindenwood Univ.) in a 15-8 decision before taking the medical forfeit over No. 19 Eric Metzler (Northwestern). In the championship bout, he faced the number three ranked grappler in the nation, from the University of Illinois, Jimmy Kennedy. Kennedy won 6-2 in the championship bout over Hutter.

141: Fresh off his first national ranking of the season, No. 19 Ryan Williams was the number one seed at 141 lbs and showed why, as he went 4-1 on the day. His only loss was a 6-2 decision in the championship bout to Oklahoma's 16th ranked grappler Zach Bailey. He earned an 8-0 major decision in the first round before pinning Jesse Whitson (Central Missouri) with under a minute left in the match. He then earned back-to-back decisions over Justin Cole (Missouri) and Willie Saxton (Missouri) to end up in the championship. He was the third of five Monarchs to take runner-up in their respective weight class on the day.

149: Kaylen Baxter would become the fourth as he added three decisions to his team leading total, now at eight on the season. Seeded second at the tournament, he went 3-1, suffering his first loss of the season in the title bout. He won 8-3 over Northwestern's Marty Gould, 9-4 over Illinois' Dan Zeman, and finally 4-2 over Indiana's Mark Walpole. He then suffered a first period fall to Northwestern's unattached grappler Ryan Lang. Baxter won his weight at the MSU Open and is now 8-1 on the season.

165: Chris Brown was seeded third in the 165-lb. weight class, and earned two major decisions in the championship bracket before dropping a one-point decision to the eventual champion, Missouri's Nick Marable. He put up 27 points on his first two opponents with a 13-4 major over David Clemens (Campsville) and a 14-5 major over Joe Barczak (Illinois). The 5-4 decision to Marable bumped Brown to the consolation bracket, where he went 2-0 to take third place in the weight class. He won 6-3 over Dominic Marella (Northwestern) and then toppled four-seed Brock Wittmeyer (Penn) in the third place bout in a 9-1 major decision, his third of the day.

174: Nick Pullano would get bounced from the championship bracket by Missouri's Joey Garrity in a 6-4 decision, but would get redemption in the 5th place bout, turning the tables in a 6-4 win over the same wrestler. In his first bout of the tournament, Pullano won a 14-2 major decision over Jesse Sheets (Central Missouri). Garrity would then bump Pullano to the consolation bracket where he earn a 7-0 win over Campsville grappler Chris Branam. He then grabbed a 15-0 technical fall shutout in only 3:56 of mat time over Central Missouri's Travis Barbarick. Lindenwood University's Matt Cauley would win 21-5 over Pullano, putting the Monarch into the 5th place bout.

184: Jesse Strawn had an incredible start to his day, scoring two major decisions good for a 22-0 spread against his first two opponents. He dropped Neil Kemp from Lindenwood 10-0 and Central Missouri's Dan McGee 12-0 in his first two bouts. He then earned a trip to the championship bout with a 10-5 sudden victory decision over the number two seed from Eastern Illinois Kenny Roberson. He became ODU's fifth rnuner-up on the day with a 7-4 loss to Missouri's top six ranked wrestler Raymond Jordan.

197: David Mendoza notched a 17-0 technical fall in his first bout of the day, but then suffered a tight 4-2 loss to the top seed from Oklahoma Eric Lapotsky. He then squeezed by Missouri's Trevor Collins in a 3-2 decision. He then faced No. 13 Patrick Bond from Southern Illinois in the third place bout

285: The Monarchs true freshman Roy Dragon III won the freshman/sophomore division at 285. He went 5-0 for the championship including a first period pin over Travis Ewart (Missouri Valley College) in the first bout of the day. He outscored his next three opponents 11-3 to get into the championship bout.

Records by Weight Class:
125: James Nicholson 2-1; 2nd Place
     Billy Chamberlain 1-2

133: Kyle Hutter 3-1; 2nd Place Justin Belanger 0-2

141: Ryan Williams 4-1; 2nd Place

149: Kaylen Baxter 3-1; 2nd Place

157: Dan Rivera 0-2

165: Chris Brown 4-1; 3rd Place

174: Nick Pullano 4-2; 5th Place

184: Jesse Strawn 3-1; 2nd Place

197: David Mendoza

285: Roy Dragon III 5-0; 1st Place

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