Feb. 14, 2010
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - It was a fitting final home match for a senior class that is likely to go down as the best in Maryland wrestling history. The Terps dominated Hofstra 34-6 on Sunday at Comcast Pavilion in front of 743 fans, in the process setting the school record with 18 wins this season.
Seniors Hudson Taylor, Steven Bell, Alex Krom and James Knox all notched victories for the No. 9 Terps as Maryland improved its home record to a perfect 7-0 this season. Maryland, a program rich in history with 20 conference titles to its name, had twice reached the 17-win mark, but this year's team set the record against one of the toughest schedules in the nation. The Terps have won five straight and nine of their last ten matches.
"We've talked about this team being one of the most successful in program history and this further solidifies that statement," said head coach Kerry McCoy. "We still have a chance to win one more and anytime you can have this much success against such a tough schedule it's a huge accomplishment. It's a real credit it to what these guys have done."
The Terps (18-4) won eight out of 10 matches against the Pride (5-11-2) and received bonus points in four matches, as Taylor, Bell, and Jon Kohler recorded pinfalls, while Alex Krom won by major decision.
Kohler set the tone in the first match at 149 pounds, methodically wearing down Ryan Colmer before recording a pin 6:29 into the match.
No. 19 Jonny Bonilla-Bowman, one of two ranked wrestlers for Hofstra, got the Pride on the scoreboard with a slim 15-11 decision over Kyle John in a back-and-forth match at 157 pounds.
No. 14 Josh Asper responded in the next match by defeating Hofstra's other ranked wrestler, No. 17 P.J. Gillespie. The grapplers battled through a scoreless first period, but Asper countered Gillespie's escape with a takedown in the second period to go ahead 2-1 heading into the final stanza. The redshirt freshman, now 29-6 this season, picked up an escape and another takedown in the third period and earned an additional point for riding time to take a 6-1 decision. Asper has won nine consecutive matches.
Bradley Nielson then extended Maryland's lead to 12-3 with a 10-3 decision over Jon Rothman at 174 pounds.
At 184, Corey Peltier dropped a 2-0 decision as Ben Clymer recorded a takedown in the final seconds, but Maryland won the next five matches.
Taylor, ranked third in the country at 197 pounds, recorded his NCAA Division 1-best 22nd pin of the season against Anthony Tortora. The two-time All-American pinned his opponent in 2:35, bringing his win total to 35 this season, which also leads all Division 1 wrestlers. Taylor, who never lost a home match in his career, is one pin shy of tying the single-season pins record of 23 set by Jake Stork in 2002-03.
Patrick Gilmore earned a 6-3 decision over Paul Snyder at heavyweight and Knox earned a hard-fought 4-3 decision over Jamie Franco at 125 pounds as the Terps increased their lead to 24-6.
Bell, who only lost one match at home in his career, pinned Luke Vaith in 4:46 at 133 pounds. A two-time ACC Champion, Bell has 97 wins in his career and is ranked 12th in the nation.
Krom finished things off for Maryland with a 10-2 major decision over Tyler Banks at 141 pounds. Ranked ninth in the nation, Krom won his fourth-straight match and has amassed 106 wins in his career, second on the team only to Taylor's 158.
The senior class consisting of Taylor, Bell, Krom, Knox, Andrew Bradley, Rich DiPietro, Mookie Golden and Casey Marwine recorded its 68th win in the last five seasons. The class also has two ACC titles to its name, and will compete for a third straight March 6 at the ACC Championship in Raleigh, N.C.
"For years to come people are going to talk about this class," said McCoy. "They've etched themselves in the record books in several areas. They're the leaders of the most successful years in program history. We're going to try to outperform ourselves each year but right now they're at the top of the ladder."
Maryland has an important match for conference seeding at Virginia on Saturday, Feb. 20. Match time is scheduled for 1 p.m.
No. 9 Maryland 34, Hofstra 6
149 - Jon Kohler (MD) pinfall over Ryan Colmer, 6:29 (6-0)
157 - No. 19 Jonny Bonilla-Bowman (HU) dec. Kyle John, 15-11 (6-3)
165 - No. 14 Josh Asper (MD) dec. No. 17 P.J. Gillespie, 6-1 (9-3)
174 - Bradley Nielson (MD) dec. Jon Rothman, 10-3 (12-3)
184 - Ben Clymer (HU) dec. Corey Peltier, 2-0 (12-6)
197 - No. 3 Hudson Taylor (MD) pinfall over Anthony Tortora, 2:35 (18-6)
HWT - Patrick Gilmore (MD) dec. Paul Snyder, 6-3 (21-6)
125 - James Knox (MD) dec. Jamie Franco, 4-3 (24-6)
133 - No. 12 Steven Bell (MD) pinfall over Luke Vaith, 4:46 (30-6)
141 - No. 9 Alex Krom (MD) major dec. Tyler Banks, 10-2 (34-6)