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Monarchs Tied for 19th at Southern Scuffle

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: December 29, 2006
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Dec. 29, 2006

GREENSBORO, NC -- After the first day of wrestling ODU is right in the middle of the pack amidst some of the toughest competition in the country at the Southern Scuffle. Tied for 19th with 25.5 team points. Chris Brown and James Nicholson led the Monarch grapplers with appearances in the Round of 16.

"The Scuffle is like a mini-national tournament," said Head Coach Steve Martin. "It's basically the toughest thing we've got on our schedule." Martin has six wrestlers still alive in the wrestlebacks at the Southern Scuffle including nationally ranked Chris Brown at 157 and unattached freshman James Nicholson.

James Nicholson (una.) tallied a 12-1 major decision over East Stroudsburg's Stephen Gambino before taking a tough 5-3 decision against nationally ranked UT-Chattanooga grappler Javier Maldonado. Nicholson rounded out the first day in the 125-pound weight class with another major decision, an 11-3 rout of N.C. State's Taylor Cummings. Nicholson's first bout on Saturday will be against 7th seed Drew Forshey (UNC). Forshey has been ranked as high as 11th in the nation in his career.

Chris Brown continued wrestling well in the 157-pound weight class going 3-1 on the day. Seeded 6th for the tournament, Brown pinned Jake Forestiere from UNC in 2:06 and then grabbed a 10-2 major decision against Edinboro sophomore John Foley. Brown matched up against Wolfpack junior Kody Hamrah in the round of 16 but was pinned in 1:06. Brown then won a 6-5 tiebreaker in the wrestlebacks against UT-Chattanooga's Joey Knox.

Four other Monarchs are still alive in the wrestlebacks as they head into day two at the Southern Scuffle.

Kyle Hutter (125) lost his first round bout but then picked up an 8-2 victory against former national qualifier and 15th ranked nationally Kent State grappler Chad Sportelli. He won again in the wrestlebacks and awaits Cal State-Bakersfield's Brandon Zoetewey.

Kaylen Baxter (149) won by default and then took a 10-4 decision before falling to the nation's top wrestler at 149 in Dustin Schlatter (Minnesota). In the wrestlebacks Baxter earned a big victory against the 8th ranked grappler in Lehigh's Trevor Chinn. The 11-4 walloping puts Baxter in a bout against Binghamton's Kyle Fried tomorrow.

Freshman Jesse Strawn (184) suffered a tough first-round loss to the number four wreslter in the nation in Missouri's Raymond Jordan but is on a three-bout win streak including a 17-1 technical fall over VMI's Corry Murray. Strawn will begin day two with a bout against North Carolina's Robert McCarthy.

Finally, nationally ranked Monarch wrestler David Mendoza (197) is still alive after losing to Edinboro freshman Pat Bradshaw 4-2. Mendoza won two bouts including a 5-3 decision over UNC's Dennis Drury. Mendoza will begin day two with a bout against Minnesota back-up Justin Bronson.

Results of day two of the Southern Scuffle can be found at www.southernscuffle.com.

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