The Eastern Michigan University men’s wrestling team traveled to Pittsburgh Sunday to take part in the Pitt Duals. The Eagles competed against the Lock Haven University Bald Eagles, University of Pittsburgh Panthers and Bloomsburg University Huskies.
The Eagles dropped each meet resulting in a 5-9 overall record and a three meet losing streak.
EMU took on Lock Haven first and lost 21-14. Redshirt sophomore Jake Byers, redshirt senior Aaron Sulzer, freshman Jacob Davis and redshirt junior Nick Whitenburg were the only Eagle wrestlers to post wins during the meet.
Sulzer got a takedown early on to earn two match points. By the end of the second period, Sulzer already had the score at 4-2 with over two minutes of riding time. Sulzer almost doubled the time by the end of the match and finished with a 5-3 decision.
Coming back to the mat after an injury, Whitenburg proved himself at the 197-pound weight class with an 18-2 technical fall against Lock Haven wrestler, Phil Sprenkle.
As a few Eagle teammates won their matches, others were unlucky. Freshman Alexander Calandrino
lost the 125-pound match by a 19-4 tech fall and redshirt freshman Michael Shaw lost by a 12-4 major decision.
Redshirt sophomore Jacob Dorulla (165 pounds) was only one point away from winning when he was defeated 2-1 by Lock Haven wrestler Aaron McKinney. The match was scoreless in the first period but was soon tied. Dorulla had a chance to win but McKinney accumulated a decent amount of riding time.
As the day carried on, the Eagles were defeated by nationally ranked No. 12 Pittsburgh, 27-9. Calandrino and redshirt junior Seth Schaner accounted for the only wins against the Panthers.
Calandrino’s win came from a Pittsburgh forfeit which gave the Eagles six points to kick-start the meet. Schaner defeated Panther wrestler Travis Shaffer with a 4-1 decision. Schaner kept his opponent’s score low, but increased riding time in his favor to just over two minutes, earning EMU three more team points.
The Panthers brought five nationally ranked wrestlers to the mat. This included No. 15 Shelton Mack (133 pounds), No. 11 Tyler Wilps (165 pounds), No. 14 Max Thomusseit (184 pounds), No. 2 Matt Wilps (197 pounds) and No. 9 Zac Thomusseit (197 pounds).
EMU redshirt senior Chris Eggert was the only wrestler to get pinned during this meet. All other EMU wrestlers kept their losses within decision range.
EMU was off to a better start when they took on the nationally ranked No. 24 Huskies and claimed the first two matches, but the final individual win came closer to the day.
The Eagles earned only three individual match wins resulting in a 24-9 loss. EMU was represented by wins from Calandrino, Byers and redshirt junior Phillip Joseph.
Calandrino out-wrestled Sean Boylan for another win at the 125-pounds weight class. Byers kept ahead of Huskie wrestler Andy Lyman by only one point and walked away with a win.
Joseph kept his 184-pound match in control by keeping his opponent off the scoreboard until the third and final period, resulting in a 4-1 decision in the Eagles’ favor.
The Huskies brought their squad of nationally ranked wrestlers in their weight classes including No. 11 Frank Hickman (157 pounds), No. 19 Josh Veltre (165 pounds), No. 16 Richard Perry (197 pounds) and No. 16 Justin Grant (285 pounds).
The Eagles had another opportunity at a win when they competed on their home mats against Olivet College Jan. 16 at Bowen Field House. As of press deadline, the results from the meet were not available.
EMU is scheduled to travel to New York to take on the Bulls from the University of New York at Buffalo Jan. 18.