#20 Monarchs Fall to #18 Oklahoma, 28-6

November 23, 2008
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Nov. 23, 2008

NORMAN, Okla. -- ODU senior Ryan Williams upset the ninth ranked 141-pounder on Sunday and sophomore James Nicholson also knocked off a top 20 grappler as both remained perfect on the season. Those would be the only highlights for Old Dominion, though, as the Monarchs (0-2) dropped a dual to the #18 Oklahoma Sooners (3-0), 28-6.

"James Nicholson and Ryan Williams defeated nationally ranked opponents and that was a positive," said head coach Steve Martin. "We lost to the #10 kid in the nation at 157 in the closing seconds of a match that was headed to overtime; at 174 and 197 we lost in the closing seconds as well in matches that were going to ot or that we were winning. Our kids competed as hard as they could but they were flat. This gives us a gauge for what we need to work on to prepare for the NCAA Tournament"

Williams, ODU's lone senior, upset the Sooner's Zach Bailey in a 6-5 decision on Sunday. The Monarch was ranked 14th on the latest InterMat poll and opposed Bailey, coming in at ninth.

Williams scored first, getting a takedown in the first period and then escaping from the bottom position in the second. With a 3-0 lead headed into the third, Williams had his sights on the big win, but Bailey tied it up with an escape and takedown of his own. Williams managed to escape to go back up one, but Bailey countered with the go-ahead takedown late in the third. With no riding time advantage either way, Williams needed at least an escape to force overtime but instead won it outright with a reversal, putting him up 6-5 for the win at 141 lbs.

It was one of just two wins on the day for ODU, as Nicholson won at 125 lbs aginst 16th ranked Joey Fio. Nicholson took a 5-1 lead into the third period and held on for the win to remain perfect on the season at 6-0. Williams is also perfect, with a 7-0 record to start the season.

Nicholson, ranked 5th in the nation, was selected to wrestled at the 43rd Annual NWCA All-Star Classic on Monday, marking the first Monarch to do so since Wayne Bright battled Dan Gable in 1970. The event is Monday night at 7:00 pm; ESPNU will air the event on tape delay. Dates and times will be announced once they become available.

The Monarchs lost a pair of close matches at 157 and 174. Kaylen Baxter faced Shane Vernon, the 14th ranked 157-pounder, as he wrestled up a weight for the second time this season. After no scoring in the first, Baxter earned the first point of the match with an escape in the second. Vernon tied it up in the third with an escape, and would add a takedown in the final minute for the win, 3-1.

At 174 lbs, junior Eric Decker faced the 10th ranked 174-, Jeff James. Mirroring the Baxter bout, Decker earned the first point in the second with an escape, but James managed an escape and takedown in the third for the win. Decker added another escape but would fall 3-2 to the #10 grappler.

In the 197-lb bout, Jesse Strawn took a 4-3 lead into the third, but Eric Lapotsky, the 10th ranked 197 came back and won 6-4 in the final period. It was the third match of the day lost in the final period for ODU.

Old Dominion falls to 0-2 on the season and returns to dual action next weekend at the Northeast Duals. Old Dominion will face (RV) Harvard, (5) Missouri, and Bloomsburg on Saturday, November 22.

Final Results - #18 Oklahoma 28, #20 Old Dominion 6
125: No. 5 James Nicholson (ODU) dec. No. 16 Joey Fio (OU); 5-2
133: David Armstrong (OU) dec. No. 12 Kyle Hutter (ODU); 11-5
141: No. 14 Ryan Williams (ODU) dec. No. 9 Zach Bailey (OU); 6-5
149: No. 16 Kyle Terry (OU) maj dec. Joey Metzler (ODU); 9-1
157: No. 14 Shane Vernon (OU) dec. Kaylen Baxter (ODU); 3-1
165: Ryan Smith (OU) fall No. 16 Chris Brown (ODU); 2:17
174: No. 10 Jeff James (OU) dec. Eric Decker (ODU); 3-2
184: Patrick Flynn (OU) dec. Joe Budi (ODU); 7-3
197: No. 10 Eric Lapotsky (OU) dec. Jesse Strawn (ODU); 6-4
285: Nathan Fernandez (OU) dec. Roy Dragon III (ODU); 5-3