ATHENS, Ohio -- The Ohio wrestling team (9-8, 5-4 MAC) finished its 2019-20 regular season strong, picking up a pair of Senior Day wins this afternoon at the Convocation Center. The Bobcats earned a decisive 27-10 win over Mid-American Conference foe Buffalo, then rolled to a 40-6 triumph over Gardner-Webb to close out the afternoon.
Ohio celebrated its six-member 2020 senior class prior to the dual against Gardner-Webb, with Zac Carson (Akron, Ohio), Kade Kowalski (Nashport, Ohio), Shakur Laney (Canal Winchester, Ohio), Ben Schneider (Orland Park, Ill.), Joe Terry (Pickerington, Ohio) and Hunter Yeargan (Willard, Mo.) honored in front of the home crowd. Carson, Laney and Yeargan ensured it would be a Senior Day to remember as all three went 2-0 on the afternoon to help propel the Bobcats to a pair of wins.
"That's probably the best we've wrestled all year, from top to bottom, and that was awesome," said 23rd-year head coach Joel Greenlee. "Every guy on our team has been working hard and trying to make gains, and I think it's showing."
A power outage on the Ohio campus delayed the start of the first match of the day by 40 minutes, then forced the Bobcats and the Bulls to wrestle in the dark. Redshirt junior Trevor Giallombardo (Petoskey, Mich.) brought energy to the building, though, when he earned his first victory of the season to open the match by recording a 13-2 win by major decision over freshman Jordan Reyes at 125 pounds.
Buffalo redshirt junior Derek Spann evened the match with a major decision win at 133, but Laney put the Bobcats back up by four courtesy of a 10-1 major decision win over redshirt freshman Marcus Robinson. After redshirt sophomore Alec Hagan (Eureka, Mo.) picked up a 2-0 win by decision over senior John Arceri at 149, Carson made it a 17-4 lead for Ohio by pinning redshirt freshman Michael Petite in 3:40 at 157.
"It just felt really good. I can't really go out much better than getting a pin," said Carson. "It was fun. I had fun, and that's what I've kind of been focusing on this last half of the year here. I'm just happy to be able to do that, for me and the team."
Senior Troy Keller earned an 8-6 win in overtime at 165 to cut Buffalo's deficit to 10, but the Bobcats earned back-to-back wins at 174 and 184, as Stanley notched an 11-3 major decision win over freshman Bryson Alsteen at 174 and Yeargan followed with a 4-1 win by decision over redshirt freshman Pete Acciardi at 184 to extend the Ohio advantage to 24-7.
Redshirt sophomore Sam Schuyler logged a 2-1 win by decision for the Bulls at 197, but redshirt freshman Jordan Earnest (Wadsworth, Ohio) sealed a 17-point conference win for the Bobcats thanks to a 3-1 win by decision over redshirt junior Logan Rill at 285.
Power had been restored to the Convo by the time the matchup with Gardner-Webb got underway, but the Bobcats continued to bring the juice, putting an exclamation point on the regular season with a 34-point win over the Runnin' Bulldogs.
The Bobcats picked up victories in eight of 10 weight classes. Redshirt freshman Giovanni DiSabato (Hilliard, Ohio) won by forfeit at 133, and Carson won by forfeit at 157 to provide Ohio with 12 points.
In his final match at the Convo, Laney came away with a 10-3 win by decision over redshirt sophomore Brandon Bright at 141. Laney has now picked up wins in nine of Ohio's last 10 duals, including eight in a row.
Hagan ensured himself a 2-0 afternoon by pinning sophomore Anthony Schiess in 2:06 at 149, and redshirt junior Nick Vestal (Wilmington, Ohio) pinned redshirt freshman RJ Mosley in 2:46 at 165.
The Bobcats won the final three bouts of the afternoon, as Yeargan tallied an 8-2 win by decision over freshman Samuel Mora at 184, redshirt junior Jake Walker (Sarasota, Fla.) posted a 12-1 major decision win over senior Roderick Davis at 197 and Earnest punctuated the afternoon by pinning redshirt sophomore Gabriel Pickett in 2:06.
"Those are both pretty good wins to get. I thought I had a pretty dominant performance on both matches," said Yeargan of his Senior Day. "To come out here and have that kind of performance on my last time ever performing at the Convo, I'm kind of at a loss for words right now. All year, I've been battling, trying to stay healthy. D-1 wrestling season is hard enough, but to add that on top of things can make things really difficult at times. To finally be healthy and finally be wrestling good and feel like I'm wrestling my best going into the MAC tournament, this is what we live for, and I'm super excited to go into the postseason.
With the regular season in the books, Ohio sets its sights on the 2020 MAC Championships, which are set to be held March 7-8 at the Convocation Center on the campus of Northern Illinois in DeKalb, Ill.
Ohio 27, Buffalo 10
125: Trevor Giallombardo (Ohio) def. Jordan Reyes (Buffalo), 13-2 maj. dec. (4-0)
133: Derek Spann (Buffalo) def. Giovanni DiSabato (Ohio), 14-4 maj. dec. (4-4)
141: Shakur Laney (Ohio) def. Marcus Robinson (Buffalo), 10-1 maj. dec. (8-4)
149: Alec Hagan (Ohio) def. John Arceri (Buffalo), 2-0 dec. (11-4)
157: Zac Carson (Ohio) def. Michael Petite (Buffalo), fall, 3:40 (17-4)
165: Troy Keller (Buffalo) def. Joe Terry (Ohio), 8-6 SV-1 (17-7)
174: Logan Stanley (Ohio) def. Bryson Alsteen (Buffalo), 11-3 maj. dec. (21-7)
184: Hunter Yeargan (Ohio) def. Pete Acciardi (Buffalo), 4-1 dec. (24-7)
197: Sam Schuyler (Buffalo) def. Jake Walker (Ohio), 2-1 dec. (24-10)
285: Jordan Earnest (Ohio) def. Logan Rill (Buffalo), 3-1 dec. (27-10)
Ohio 40, Gardner-Webb 6
125: Michael Pappaconstantinou (Gardner-Webb) def. Trevor Giallombardo (Ohio), 8-6 dec. (0-3)
133: Giovanni DiSabato (Ohio) for. (6-3)
141: Shakur Laney (Ohio) def. Brandon Bright (Gardner-Webb), 10-3 dec. (9-3)
149: Alec Hagan (Ohio) def. Anthony Schiess (Gardner-Webb), fall, 2:06 (15-3)
157: Zac Carson (Ohio) for. (21-3)
165: Nick Vestal (Ohio) def. RJ Mosley (Gardner-Webb), fall, 2:46 (27-3)
174: Evan Schenk (Gardner-Webb) def. Logan Stanley (Ohio), 7-5 dec. (27-6)
184: Hunter Yeargan (Ohio) def. Samuel Mora (Gardner-Webb), 8-2 dec. (30-6)
197: Jake Walker (Ohio) def. Roderick Davis (Gardner-Webb), 12-1 maj. dec. (34-6)
285: Jordan Earnest (Ohio) def. Gabriel Pickett (Gardner-Webb), fall, 2:06 (40-6)