CLARION, Pa. – The Cleveland State University wrestling team had a chance for a dual victory entering the final bout, but host Clarion won the final match to hold off CSU's upset bid and claim a 20-12 win in EWL action Sunday afternoon.
The Vikings and Golden Eagles each won four of the opening eight matches, but Clarion gathered a pair of wins at the final two weight classes contested to eke out a win.
Redshirt junior John Martin scored the first points of the day with his first-period takedown at 125 pounds. However, his opponent rallied to score the next eight points. Martin would cut his deficit to three points in the third period but was unable to get over the hump and dropped a four-point decision.
After losing the 133-pound bout, Cleveland State got on the scoreboard courtesy of junior Evan Cheek at 141 pounds.
Cheek used two takedowns in the first period to open up a 4-2 lead after three minutes. Cheek rode his opponent throughout the second period before tallying an escape and a takedown in the third period. With a point of riding time, Cheek earned a comfortable, 8-3, win.
Redshirt freshman Ryan Ford then came up with a quality win over his Golden Eagle opponent that entered the day with a 19-7 record. The grapplers traded escapes in the second and third period, leaving the score knotted, 1-1. Ford then posted a crucial takedown with about a minute left to take the lead. He added another takedown in the waning seconds to hold on for a 5-2 win.
Junior John Vaughn lost a frustrating bout at 157 as his opponent's third-period escape was the lone point in the match.
True freshman Georgio Poullas then got CSU back to within one point. He used two takedowns to take a 4-1 lead after three minutes. Holding a two-point lead after two periods, Poullas used an escape and a takedown in the third to win by five points.
Redshirt senior Gabe Stark owned a one-point lead after two periods at 174 pounds, but his opponent outscored him in the third to win via decision.
In the 184-pound bout, redshirt senior Nick Corba faced Greg Bulsak, an opponent ranked among the top 30 in the initial NCAA rankings. After a scoreless first period, Corba rode Bulsak for the entire second frame, refusing to allow an escape. After an even third period, the point of riding time that Corba earned in the second stanza proved to be the difference in his win.
True freshman John Kelbly trailed by just a single point entering the third period at 197 pounds but could not break through in the final two minutes.
Nonetheless, CSU still had a chance to win the dual entering the heavyweight bout. However, after a scoreless first period, Clarion took a lead in the bout which it would not relinquish to guarantee the team win.
Cheek, Poullas and Corba all won their second EWL match in as many days with Sunday's effort. Cheek now owns 15 wins this season while Corba has a team-leading 21.
Ford's victory was his first win in an EWL dual in his young career.
Cleveland State will remain on the road next weekend for EWL duals on back-to-back days, beginning Friday, Feb. 2, at Bloomsburg.
Clarion 20, Cleveland State 12
125: Gavin Park (CLAR) over John Martin (CSU) – 10-6 dec. | Clarion leads, 3-0
133: Roshaun Cooley (CLAR) over Andrew Coghill (CSU) – 10-2 MD | Clarion leads, 7-0
141: Evan Cheek (CSU) over Evan Myers (CLAR) – 8-3 dec. | Clarion leads, 7-3
149: Ryan Ford (CSU) over Taylor Ortz (CLAR) – 5-2 dec. | Clarion leads, 7-6
157: Avery Shay (CLAR) over John Vaughn (CSU) – 1-0 dec. | Clarion leads, 10-6
165: Georgio Poullas (CSU) over Max Wohlabaugh (CLAR) – 8-3 dec. | Clarion leads, 10-9
174: Dominic Rigous (CLAR) over Gabe Stark (CSU) – 7-3 dec. | Clarion leads, 13-9
184: Nick Corba (CSU) over Greg Bulsak (CLAR) – 1-0 dec. | Clarion leads, 13-12
197: Dustin Conti (CLAR) over John Kelbly (CSU) – 6-2 dec. | Clarion leads, 16-12
285: Toby Cahill (CLAR) over Collin Kelly (CSU) – 11-3 MD | Clarion wins, 20-12