MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – The Central Michigan wrestling team recorded two pins, a technical fall, and two major decisions Sunday in dominating Kent State, 40-3, in a Mid-American Conference dual at McGuirk Arena.
It was the home finale for the Chippewas and their Senior Day as they won their sixth consecutive dual, improving to 9-2. They finished 6-2 in MAC duals.
“Pretty good way to end the MAC regular season,” CMU coach Tom Borrelli said. “Pretty happy with the way our guys wrestled today.
“Normally at this time of the year we’re training really hard. I knew we were going to have a real tough month of January and early February. We had four weekends in a row of Friday-Sunday dual meets. So I’ve kind of given the guys a break a little bit. I think it’s paid off for them. I think they’re pretty fresh and pretty confident. “
It was the third consecutive dual in which the Chippewas dropped just one match. They have won 27 in that stretch.
A 19-18 victory over Michigan, which was ranked 10th at the time, came during the six-meet win streak, which began after a 24-8 dual loss at Missouri.
“Ever since that Michigan match,” CMU’s Austin Severn said. “If there was any doubt, they would have been removed. They were 10th in the country and they’d beaten people that were (ranked) ahead of them. There’s no reason why our team can’t wrestle with any team in the country right now.”
That loss to Missouri, and a 17-16 MAC loss to Northern Iowa, proved to be a turning point in the season.
“Both the matches against Missouri and Northern Iowa our guys were pretty disappointed in themselves,” Borrelli said. “I just think they felt like they were better than that, better than the outcome in both of those matches. There’s been a little bit of a change in focus.”
The Chippewas got pins from Justin Oliver (149 pounds) and Severn (197) on Sunday. It was Oliver’s team-leading 10th fall of the season. Severn has won five of his last six matches, two by fall.
“That was really important to me, really special to me,” said Severn, one of four CMU seniors who was honored prior to the meet. “Just happy a lot of friends and family, my parents, were out here tonight for that.”
The Chippewas got a technical fall from Brent Fleetwood (125) and major decision victories from Mason Smith (141) and CJ Brucki (174). CMU’s Colin Heffernan (157), Logan Parks (165) and Jordan Ellingwood (184) each won by decision, and senior Corey Keener (133) won by void.
The lone Kent State victory came in the meet’s final match, heavyweight, where Devin Nye topped Tyrus Kemp, 5-2.
The Chippewas collected 17 takedowns in the meet to Kent State’s three. Two of the Golden Flashes’ takedowns came in the heavyweight match.
The Chippewas turn their attention to a dual next Sunday at Wisconsin, and then the MAC Championships March 4-5 at Northern Iowa.
“We’ll have to get back to some hard training now,” Borrelli said. “Wisconsin will help us a lot. They’ll be a pretty good opponent and we’ll have an opportunity to see exactly what we need to sharpen up on before the MAC Tournament.”
CENTRAL MICHIGAN 40, KENT STATE 3
125: Brent Fleetwood (CMU) tech. fall Cory Simpson, 16-0, 5:40
133: Corey Keener (CMU) won by void
141: Mason Smith (CMU) major dec. Chance Driscoll, 11-0
149: Justin Oliver (CMU) pin Tim Rooney, 2:37
157: Colin Heffernan (CMU) dec. Casey Sparkman, 8-2
165: Logan Parks (CMU) dec. Jared Walker, 7-3
174: CJ Brucki (CMU) major dec. Isaac Bast, 11-2
184: Jordan Ellingwood (CMU) dec. Shane Mast, 7-1
197: Austin Severn (CMU) pinned Stephen Suglio, 4:14
HWT: Devin Nye (KSU) dec. Tyrus Kemp, 5-2