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Monarchs Go 2-0 On Day One of Virginia Duals

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
Release: January 11, 2008
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Jan. 11, 2008

HAMPTON, Va. -- The ODU wrestling team (6-1) earned two wins at the Virginia Duals on Friday, as they dropped Lock Haven (6-2), 31-3, and Virginia Tech (3-2) , 30-3. The Monarchs only lost two bouts of the twenty on the day for the two victories with seven major decisions. Nick Pullano (Chesapeake, Va.) earned the biggest win of the day, dropping 2007 NCAA Qualifier and nationally ranked #19 Eric Decker (VT) in overtime. The Monarchs return to the mat at 2:00 pm on Saturday, facing off against #17 Illinois in the semifinals.

"The guys stepped up today," said assistant coach Mike Dixon. "We wrestled very well as a team; it was a good team performance. Now we know we have a big challenge ahead of us and we're looking forward to it."

ODU opened the day against Lock Haven University and won the first nine bouts. James Nicholson (Des Moines, Iowa) gave the Monarchs a quick 4-0 lead with a major decision at 125 lbs over John Trumbetti, 11-1. Kyle Hutter (Mokena, Ill.) just missed a major, dropping Billy Ashnault 10-3 at the 133 lb weight.

Team leaders in wins Ryan Williams (Mechanicsburg, Pa.) and Kaylen Baxter (Fairbanks, Alaska) notched two more major decisions for ODU in the dual at 141 and 149 lbs respectively. Dan Rivera (Winter Springs, Fla.) followed with the sixth win of his season. The redshirt freshman was down 2-1 as time waned in the third period, but managed a takedown with just three seconds remaining for the win.

Chris Brown (Chesapeake, Va.) and Nick Pullano grabbed wins to seal the victory at 25-0 after the 174 lb bout. It set up a matchup between ODU's 184-pounder Jesse Strawn (Holton, Kansas) and 2007 NCAA Qualifier Jeremie Cook. Strawn never led in the match, and nearly shutout the Lock Haven grappler, winning 7-1. David Mendoza (Mechanicsburg, Pa.) wrapped up the wins for ODU in the first match with a tiebreaker victory over Ben Hepburn.

Andy Totusek (Omaha, Neb.) suffered the only loss of the first match for ODU, losing just 2-5 to Daniel Craig.

The Monarchs returned to the mat to face in-state rivals Virginia Tech. The match was much the same as the morning dual, as ODU toppled the ACC team 30-3.

Nicholson defeated Justin Staylor 4-1 at 125 lbs and Kyle Hutter grabbed a 15-7 major decision victory over Nick Murray at 133 lbs to give ODU a quick 7-0 lead. Williams earned his 85th career victory over Chris Diaz, 4-1 and Baxter tallied his second major decision of the day, toppling Matt Rosen 17-3.

Rivera grabbed his second win of the day, 9-5 over Andre Johnson, and Brown put up a team-high 22 points on his Hokie opponent for a major decision. The win set up a match-clinching win by redshirt senior Nick Pullano at 174 lbs. Pullano and NCAA qualifier Eric Decker, ranked 19th in the country, battled for much of the bout with the only points coming from escapes in the second and third period. With the score tied at 1-1, the match went into a sudden victory period. The Monarch senior grabbed a takedown with 16 seconds remaining on the clock to win 3-1.

Strawn and Mendoza won their bouts and Totusek dropped his second of the day for the final score of 30-3. The Monarchs improved to 6-1 in duals this season and will face #17 Illinois in the Virginia Duals semi-finals tomorrow at 2:00 pm.

Match #1 Champ. Round 1: Old Dominion defeated Lock Haven 31-3
125 - James Nicholson (Old Dominion) over John Trumbetti (Lock Haven) Maj 11-1
Team Score: 4-0 ODU
133 - Kyle Hutter (Old Dominion) over Billy Ashnault (Lock Haven) Dec 10-3
Team Score: 7-0 ODU
141 - Ryan Williams (Old Dominion) over Owen Wilkinson (Lock Haven) Maj 16-3
Team Score: 11-0 ODU
149 - Kaylen Baxter (Old Dominion) over Matt Fittery (Lock Haven) Maj 19-6
Team Score: 15-0 ODU
157 - Dan Rivera (Old Dominion) over John Mangini (Lock Haven) Dec 3-2
Team Score: 18-0 ODU
165 - Chris Brown (Old Dominion) over Landis Wright (Lock Haven) Dec 14-8
Team Score: 21-0 ODU
174 - Nick Pullano (Old Dominion) over Tom Kocher (Lock Haven) Maj 12-2
Team Score: 25-0 ODU
184 - Jesse Strawn (Old Dominion) over Jeremie Cook (Lock Haven) Dec 7-1
Team Score: 28-0 ODU
197 - David Mendoza (Old Dominion) over Ben Hepburn (Lock Haven) Dec 5-4
Team Score: 31-0 ODU
HWT - Daniel Craig (Lock Haven) over Andy Totusek (Old Dominion) Dec 5-3
Team Score: 31-3 ODU

Match #2 Quarterfinal: Old Dominion defeated Virginia Tech 30-3
125 - James Nicholson (Old Dominion) over Justin Staylor (Virginia Tech) Dec 4-1
Team Score: 3-0 ODU
133 - Kyle Hutter (Old Dominion) over Nick Murray (Virginia Tech) Maj 15-7
Team Score: 7-0 ODU
141 - Ryan Williams (Old Dominion) over Chris Diaz (Virginia Tech) Dec 5-1
Team Score: 10-0 ODU
149 - Kaylen Baxter (Old Dominion) over Matt Rosen (Virginia Tech) Maj 17-3
Team Score: 14-0 ODU
157 - Dan Rivera (Old Dominion) over Andre Johnson (Virginia Tech) Dec 9-5
Team Score: 17-0 ODU
165 - Chris Brown (Old Dominion) over Matt Epperly (Virginia Tech) Maj 21-9
Team Score: 21-0 ODU
174 - Nick Pullano (Old Dominion) over Eric Decker (Virginia Tech) Dec 3-1
Team Score: 24-0 ODU
184 - Jesse Strawn (Old Dominion) over Tommy Spellman (Virginia Tech) Dec 6-4
Team Score: 27-0 ODU
197 - David Mendoza (Old Dominion) over Kevin O`Connor (Virginia Tech) Dec 11-6
Team Score: 30-0 ODU
HWT - David Marone (Virginia Tech) over Andy Totusek (Old Dominion) Dec 5-3
Team Score: 30-3 ODU


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