YPSILANTI, Mich. -- The Eastern Michigan University wrestling team secured its third-straight victory and improves to 2-0 at home as it defeated Olivet College 23-9, Tuesday, Dec. 17 at Bowen Field House.
With the win, Eastern improves to 7-1 overall on the season, while Olivet falls to 4-2 overall. The win brings Head Coach Derek DelPorto just one win away from tying the all-time EMU coaching record as he currently posts a 79-69-2 record. The all-time EMU coaches record is held by John Eisley who posted an 80-74-2 record in his 12 years at Eastern.
Redshirt-senior Brandon Zeerip (Fremont, Mich.-Hesperia) got the Eagles out to a quick 4-0 lead over the Comets as he grabbed a 14-6 major decision over Kyle Witgen before freshman Austin Geerlings (Kentwood, Mich.-East Kentwood) picked up his second dual victory of his collegiate
campaign, earning a 10-4 decision at 165 lbs.
Olivet earned its first points of the night in the 174 lb. weight class as Nick Allen used 2:17 of riding time to secure a 3-2 victory over Jacob Davis (North Ridgeville, Ohio-St. Edward) before EMU went on to win five-straight bouts. Eastern extended its lead to 10-3 when Anthony Abro (Canton, Mich.-Canton) shut out Ryan Stevenson 4-0 at 184 lbs.
Redshirt-senior Nick Whitenburg (Temperance, Mich.-Bedford) grabbed the Eagles' second major decision of the dual at 197 lbs. when he shut out Thomas Hall 11-0, including one point for 2:17 of riding time. The Green and White took a 14-point lead over Olivet when redshirt-senior Khodor Hoballah (Dearborn, Mich.-Dearborn) nabbed EMU's third shutout of the day with a 4-0 decision over Ryan Stevenson.
"True" freshman Shayne Wireman (Lansing, MIch.-Holt) clinched his second dual victory of the season as he earned an 8-1 decision over Kyle Gillies, while Vincent Pizzuto (North Jackson, Ohio-Jackson Milton) picked up the Eagles' final victory of the day with a 10-4 decision at 133 lbs.
Trailing by 20, Olivet came back to win the final two bouts as Jake Byers (Cedar Springs, Mich.-Rockford) and Mike Shaw (Bangor, Mich.-Allegan) were unable to earn victories in their respective weight classes.
The Eagles hit the road for the fifth time this season as they travel to Evanston, Ill. to compete in the Midland Championships, Saturday, Dec. 28 – Sunday, Dec. 29.
157: Brandon Zeerip (EMU) maj. dec. Kyle Witgen (OC), 14-6 (EMU, 4-0)
165: Austin Geerlings (EMU) dec. Dan Fleet (OC), 10-4 (EMU, 7-0)
174: Nick Allen (OC) dec. Jacob Davis (EMU), 3-2 (EMU, 7-3)
184: Anthony Abro (EMU) dec. Jeff Holm (OC), 7-3 (EMU, 10-3)
197: Nick Whitenburg (EMU)maj. dec. Thomas Hall (OC), 11-0 (EMU, 14-3)
HWT: Khodor Hoballah (EMU) dec. Ryan Stevenson (OC), 4-0 (EMU, 17-3)
125: Shayne Wireman (EMU) dec. Kyle GIllies (OC), 8-1 (EMU, 20-3)
133: Vincent Pizzuto (EMU) dec. Michael Gancer (OC), 10-4 (EMU, 23-3)
141: Justin Holm (OC) dec. Jake Byers (EMU), 4-2 (EMU, 23-6)
149: Gage Pederson (OC) dec. Mike Shaw (EMU), 2-0 (EMU, 23-9)
157: Zeerip maj. dec. Witgen, 14-6
Zeerip took a 4-2 lead to end the first period as he used two takedowns and secured 1:02 of riding time, while Witgen was only able to muster two escapes in the first period. After choosing down to start the second period, Zeerip nabbed an escape and two takedowns to close out the second with a 7-2 lead. Zeerip continued to build on his lead in the third period nabbing three takedowns and securing a total of 2:53 of riding time. Witgen was unable to secure any takedowns in the entire bout, but did grab three escapes in the final two minutes of action.
165: Geerlings dec. Fleet, 10-4
Geerlings nabbed the first points of the match as he secured a takedown before Fleet was awarded an escape to end the first period. Geerling chose to be down to start the second period and quickly earned an escape and a takedown. Fleet grabbed one final escape to end the second period, while Geerling secured 1:51 of riding time to take a 5-2 advantage heading into the final minutes of action. Fleet led off the third period with an escape, but Geerlings recovered quickly as he had two final takedowns compared to Fleet's one escape. Geerlings also tacked on 2:19 of riding time to secure a 10-4 decision and give EMU the 7-0 lead.
174: Allen dec. Davis, 3-2
Davis scored the only points of the first period as he clinched a takedown just 0:14 seconds into the bout. The two points would be the only scoring spectators would see heading into the third period. After choosing down to start the third, Allen used a reversal to knot the score at 2-2 and was able to clinch the deciding point with 2:17 of riding time and give Olivet its first points of the night.
184: Abro dec. Holm, 7-3
The first period went back-and-forth in scoring as Abro earned a takedown before Holm grabbed his first escape. The two used the same sequence one more time in the first period before Abro nabbed one final takedown to take the 6-2 lead after the first period. Abro earned the only points of the second period as he escaped after choosing down to bring his lead to 7-2. The final point of the match came in the final period as Holm clinched an escape after choosing down to start the period, but was unable to get an advantage over Abro as the redshirt-senior gave EMU the 10-3 lead over Olivet.
197: Whitenburg maj. dec. Hall, 11-0
Whitenburg dominated throughout the entire bout as he used a takedown and a near fall in the first period and an escape and a takedown in the second to take an 8-0 advantage heading into the final two minutes of the match. The redshirt-senior used 2:07 of riding time and one final takedown to secure the 11-0 shut out victory over Hall and claim the major decision for the Eagles.
HWT: Hoballah dec. Stevenson, 4-0
The only points of the first period came on a Hoballah takedown as he led 2-0 heading into the second period. Hoballah was also able to secure his riding time point in the first period as he grabbed 1:39 and never looked back. The second period saw no scoring between the two opponents as the final point of the match came in the third when Hoballah was awarded one point for a Stevenson stall.
125: Wireman dec. Gillies, 8-1
Wireman was aggressive to start the bout as he used two takedowns and a near fall in the first period to take a 6-0 lead over Gillies. Gillies nabbed his first point after choosing down to start the second half and earning the escape point before Wireman added on an entire minute of riding time from his first period time of 2:40. After choosing down to start the third period, Wireman used one final escape and his 1:24 riding time to earn his second dual victory of the season and extend the Eagle lead to 20-3.
133: Pizzuto dec. Gancer 10-4
Pizzuto used two takedowns compared to Gancers two escapes to take the 4-2 lead heading into the second period. A reversal and a takedown in the second gave Pizzuto the 8-4 lead before a takedown in the final period allowed the redshirt-sophomore to take a 10-4 victory and pick up the Green and White's final win of the night.
141: Holms dec. Byers, 4-2
Holms grabed the only two points of the first two periods on a takedown in the first. Holms nabbed two escapes in the third, while Byers was only able to muster one takedown as time clicked off the clock and Holm's went on to a 4-2 victory, earning Olivet three points on the decision.
149: Pederson dec. Shaw, 2-0
The only points of the entire bout came in the first period as Pederson used an early takedown to secure the 2-0 victory over Shaw, but the decision was not enough as the Eagles took the 23-9 dual victory over the Comets.
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