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Minotti earns OT win as three Lehigh wrestlers compete at NWCA All-Star Classic

ATLANTA -- Junior Mitch Minotti pinned South Dakota State's Cody Pack in sudden victory to lead the way for the three Lehigh wrestlers who competed at the 50th NWCA All-Star Classic Sunday evening at McCamish Pavilion on the campus of Georgia Tech. All three Lehigh bouts went into overtime, with Minotti earning the lone victory. Seniors Mason Beckman and Nathaniel Brown both came up on the short ends of 4-1 decisions in sudden victory.

Minotti was the second Mountain Hawk to take the mat Sunday as the two-time All-American squared off with Pack at 157. A scoreless first period saw Minotti warned for stalling just over a minute in. Pack initiated a scramble late in the first period, with Minotti nearly establishing control for a takedown, but after review no points were awarded and the match was 0-0 after one.

Pack opened the second period with a quick escape and Minotti followed suit in the third. There was no further scoring in regulation, with Pack warned for stalling in the final seconds of the third period.

In the sudden victory period, Minotti shot a single leg and while working for control was able to pin Pack without establishing control. Time of the fall was 7:45.

Beckman was the first Mountain Hawk on the mats, as he met Michigan's Rossi Bruno in a battle of returning All-Americans at 133. After a scoreless first period, Beckman escaped 25 seconds into the second to take a 1-0 lead. He nearly countered a Bruno shot for a takedown at the second period buzzer but video review did not show indisputable evidence of control.

Bruno escaped early in the third to tie the match at 1-1 and then scored the winning takedown 19 seconds into sudden victory to win 4-1.

As an experimental rule, all takedowns Sunday evening were worth three points instead of the conventional two.

Beckman is now 1-2 in three career appearances in the NWCA All-Star Classic.

Brown met Arizona State's Blake Stauffer in a battle of returning All-Americans at 184. The wrestlers traded quick escapes in the second and third period. Brown initiated the offense in the sudden victory but couldn't establish control with a single leg or after switching to a double leg. Stauffer countered Brown's attempt and score the decisive takedown in the final seconds of sudden victory to win 4-1.

Lehigh wrestlers now own a 17-15 record in the NWCA All-Star Classic. With three participants in 2015, this marked the third time in school annals that Lehigh had three wrestlers compete in the All-Star Classic. Lehigh also had three participants in 1983 (Bobby Weaver, Pete Schuyler, Darryl Burley) and 1980 (Mike Brown, Rich Santoro, Burley)

The Mountain Hawks will open their dual meet season on Friday when they visit EIWA rival Bucknell at 7 p.m. The match will air on ESPN Radio 1230 and 1320 as well as ESPNLV.com with coverage beginning at 6:45 p.m.

50th NWCA All-Star Classic:
133 - Rossi Bruno (Michigan) dec. Mason Beckman (Lehigh) 4-1, sv
157 - Mitch Minotti (Lehigh) Fall Cody Pack (South Dakota St.) 7:45, sv
184 - Blake Stauffer (Arizona State) dec. Nathaniel Brown (Lehigh) 4-1, sv

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