LEXINGTON, Va. -- After a slow start, Appalachian State University rattled off four-straight victories en route to a 22-12 Southern Conference victory over VMI Wednesday night at Cocke Hall.
The conference win moves the Mountaineers to 7-6 overall and 4-2 in league play, breaking a four-match losing streak and ensuring a winning conference record for the second consecutive season. Historically, Appalachian (7-6, 4-2 SoCon) claims its sixth-straight and 27th all-time victory in the long-standing rivalry against the Keydets.
VMI (1-14, 1-4 SoCon) began the dual with two-straight decisions over freshman Zach Kechter and junior Collins Creech at 149 and 157 pounds, respectively, taking a quick 6-0 lead.
Facing the deficit, redshirt freshman Zack Strickland gave the Mountaineers some life at 165 pounds. Strickland recorded his first technical fall since November, clinching a 17-0 win over Mike Logan at the 4:17 mark. The technical fall marks Strickland's 11th win in duals and 21st of the season.
Following Strickland, classmate Colin Hedash broke his two-bout losing streak with a 14-6 major decision over John Dommert, a rematch from the Hokie Open. For Hedash, it was his third major decision of the season and first since the Keystone Open in November.
Continuing his winning ways, sophomore Jake Johnson posted a 3-2 decision over Jonathan Jones at 184 pounds. Johnson has now won four of his last five bouts and remains perfect in SoCon bouts with a 4-0 record.
Holding a 12-6 advantage, redshirt sophomore Paul Weiss also broke a two-bout losing streak with a 6-2 decision over Urayoan Garcia at 197 pounds. The decision was Weiss' 35th win for his career, the third most on the active roster.
After a loss at the heavyweight division, redshirt sophomore Dominic Parisi earned his fifth major decision of the season, blanking Armondo Herrer-Dos Reis, 10-0, at 125 pounds. Parisi snaps a two-bout losing streak and notches his ninth dual-victory of the year.
Senior Brett Boston closed the Mountaineer scoring with a 6-0 shutout against Andriy Onufriyenko, who dropped just his second loss in a conference dual this season. For Boston, the win was his eight of the season and the 51st of his career.
Appalachian looks to head into the SoCon Championships with a winning overall record and close its 2012-13 dual season on Sunday, Feb. 24 at Davidson. Action from Belk Arena is set for 1 p.m.
149: Zeb Stewart (VMI) dec. Zach Kechter (APP), 7-2 (VMI 3-0)
157: Edward Gottwald (VMI) dec. Collins Creech (APP), 6-0 (VMI 6-0)
165: Zack Strickland (APP) tech. fall Mike Logan (VMI), 17-0 (4:17) (VMI 6-5)
174: Colin Hedash (APP) maj. dec. John Dommert (VMI), 14-6 (APP 9-6)
184: Jake Johnson (APP) dec. Jonathan Jones (VMI), 3-2 (APP 12-6)
197: Paul Weiss (APP) dec. Urayoan Garcia (VMI), 6-2 (APP 15-6)
285: Michael LaPrade (VMI) dec. Joe Cummings (APP), 3-1 (APP 15-9)
125: Dominic Parisi (APP) maj. dec. Armondo Herrera-Dos Reis (VMI), 10-0 (APP 19-9)
133: Brett Boston (APP) dec. Andriy Onufriyenko (VMI), 6-0 (APP 22-9)
141: Ryan Goodsell (VMI) dec. Chris Johnson (APP), 4-2 (APP 22-12)