March 20, 2008
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Sophomore Hudson Taylor won his first two matches and sits in the quarterfinals of the championship bracket after the first day of the 2008 NCAA Championships on March 20 at Scottrade Center. Five of Maryland's six wrestlers are still alive in the tournament.
Taylor, seeded seventh at 197 pounds, faced Jared Villers of West Virginia and picked up his 18th fall of the season in the first round. After a slow start to the match in the early going, Taylor scored a takedown with 55 seconds left to take a 2-0 lead. Taylor was on top for the second period and rode Villers the entire way.
In the final period, Taylor started down and earned a reversal just 10 seconds in. The sophomore parlayed that into a pin with 1:21 to go in the match.
Taylor then overwhelmed 10th-seeded Joel Flaggert of Oklahoma in the second round by shutting him out, 7-0. Taylor scored an early takedown and got a three-point near fall to take a commanding 5-0 lead. Taylor escaped early in the second after starting down and then tacked on the bonus point for the win.
Taylor will try to avenge one of his two losses this season when he battles second-seeded Phil Davis of Penn State Friday morning in the quarterfinals.
Sophomore Steven Bell lost his first round match at 133 pounds but gave fifth-seeded Nicholas Fanthorpe of Iowa State a tough go of it. Fanthorpe was up just 2-1 after the first period and started down in the second. He scored an escape and a takedown and took a 5-1 lead into the final period. Bell started down in the third and escaped to cut the deficit to three, but Fanthorpe scored another takedown and earned the riding time point to pull away.
In his first wrestleback later in the evening, Bell dominated face Cory VomBaur of Wyoming, 12-3. Bell racked up nine points in the first period and never looked back.
Bell also won his second round wrestleback, upsetting 12th-seeded Andrae Hernandez of Indiana, 8-5. Bell jumped out of the gate with a quick takedown and a three-point near fall to post five points, but Hernandez scored a reversal to make it 5-2.
In the second period, Hernandez started down and got the escape but Bell earned a takedown later in the period to extend his lead to 7-3 which Hernandez could not get back from.
Bell will take on Missouri's Tyler McCormick in the third round of the wrestlebacks beginning Friday.
Freshman Eric Medina fell 8-4 to Edinboro's Daryl Cocozzo at 149 in the first round. The freshman kept up with Kriegbaum in the first period as he was down 6-4. Medina earned a takedown and two escapes in the period.
Kriegbaum started down in the second and escaped for the only point of the period and then he rode Medina the entire third period to take the win.
Medina then faced Chattanooga's Joseph Knox in the second round of the wrestlebacks and earned a couple of pin points for the Terps as he took care of his opponent in just 2:34.
Waiting in the wings for Medina is eighth-seeded Jake Patacsil of Purdue.
The Terps picked up their first win of the day when freshman Brian Letters upset ninth-seeded Chase Pami of Cal Poly in the first round at 157 pounds, 5-4. Letters earned the first takedown of the match in the first period and Pami escaped for the only scoring in the first period. Pami tied it up in the second though as Letters earned a quick escape. Pami then scored a takedown to tie the match, 3-3.
In the third period, Pami started down and escaped but Letters accumulated enough riding time to get the bonus point and force overtime. Neither wrestler could score in the extra session and in the first tie breaker, Letters got an escape. Pami was unable to escape Letters' hold in the next round and the freshman got the win.
In his second round match, Cornell's Jordan Leen, the eighth seed, proved to be too much as he beat Letters 4-1. Leen scored a first period takedown and a third period escape and added the riding time bonus for the win.
Letters is scheduled to wrestle Bloomsburg's Matt Moley in the second round of the wrestlebacks tomorrow morning.
Sophomore Mike Letts, seeded 10th at 174 pounds, overwhelmed Wisconsin's Dan Clum in the first round of his bracket, 9-2. Letts racked up four takedowns and over 4:00 of riding time while allowing just two escapes to his opponent.
Letts had to face Navy's Matt Stolpinski, the seventh seed, in the second round in a rematch from earlier in the season when Stolpinski pinned Letts. This time, the two battled to a tiebreaker with Stolpinski coming out on top, 5-4.
Letts scored the match's first points with a takedown two minutes in but Stolpinski escaped to make it 2-1 after the first period. Letts started down in the second and escaped for the period's only points to take a 3-1 lead into the final period.
Stolpinski started down and escaped Letts' grasp early to cut the deficit to 3-2 and then he scored a takedown with just under a minute left to take a 4-3 lead. Letts escaped quickly and the two went into overtime tied 4-4.
Nobody scored in the overtime period and Letts started down in the first part of the tiebreaker but could not break free of Stolpinski. When it was Stolpinski's turn to head to the mat, he earned an escape with 28 seconds left to seal the win.
Letts will have to battle eighth-seeded Gabriel Dretsch of Minnesota on Friday who was upset in the first round then won by decision in the first round of the wrestlebacks, 5-3.
Sophomore Jon Kohler lost his two matches of the day at 141 to Jacob Kriegbaum of Air Force, 11-2, and Liberty's Tim Harner, 12-5.
Session III is slated to begin at 10:00 a.m. on Friday at Scottrade Center in downtown St. Louis.
133 - Steven Bell
First Round - Lost to #5 Nicholas Fanthorpe (Iowa State), 8-2
Wrestleback First Round - Beat Cory VomBaur (Wyoming), 12-3
Wrestleback Second Round - Beat #12 Andrae Hernandez (Indiana), 8-5
141 - Jon Kohler
First Round - Lost to Jacob Kriegbaum (Air Force), 11-2
Wrestleback First Round - Lost to Tim Harner (Liberty), 12-5
149 - Eric Medina
First Round - Lost to Daryl Cocozzo (Edinboro), 8-4
Wrestleback Second Round - Beat Joseph Knox (Chattanooga) by fall, 2:34
157 - Brian Letters
First Round - Beat #9 Chase Pami (Cal Poly), 5-4 (tb1)
Second Round - Lost to #8 Jordan Leen (Cornell), 4-1
174 - #10 Mike Letts
First Round - Beat Dan Clum (Wisconsin), 9-2
Second Round - Lost to #7 Matt Stolpinski (Navy), 5-4 (tb1)
197 - #7 Hudson Taylor
First Round - Beat Jared Villers (West Virginia) by fall, 5:39
Second Round - Beat #10 Joel Flaggert (Oklahoma), 7-0