#9 Hokies Squeak Past Terps, 20-19
Jan. 25, 2013
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The Terps and ninth-ranked Hokies split 10 matches Friday night, but bonus points fell in favor of the visitors as Virginia Tech edged the Maryland wrestling team 20-19 at Comcast Pavilion.
The Terps (9-6, 0-1 ACC) got wins from Geoffrey Alexander (133), Josh Asper (165), Christian Boley (197) and Jimmy Sheptock, and Shane Arechiga picked up six points to open the night with a victory via medical forfeit. Sheptock improved his dual record to 15-0 and Alexander continued to score bonus points with a major decision.
“We talk about scoring bonus points,” said head coach Kerry McCoy. “I don't know if our guys are afraid to open themselves open to score an extra point. If I take a risk to score, I may give up a score. I think that is what we got to figure out. Why were not able to go out there and score the points or shut down someone else's points when it is happening. We got to have a sense of urgency and realize the situation."
Following a victory for Tech at 125, the Terps trailed by five and needed a pin to get the win. Alexander, ranked 16th nationally, went right to work and scored a takedown 19 seconds into the match against 18th-ranked Erik Spjut. With Spjut on his side, Alexander worked Spjut’s upper body and arms to get him onto his back, but to no avail.
Alexander added takedowns in the second and third periods, but each time Spjut fought off the potential pin. The sophomore went on to record a 9-1 major decision for his effort. Alexander has scored bonus points in four of his last five matches including three by fall.
With the Hokies’ Zach Neibert sidelined with an injury, the Terps picked up six points right out of the gate at 141. But Virginia Tech answered with victories at 149, 157 and 165 to stake the Hokies to a 13-6 lead.
Needing to score points, the Terps turned to their trio of ranked wrestlers at 174, 184 and 197. Fifth-ranked Asper responded with an 8-3 decision over Austin Gabel. The senior scored takedowns in each period and picked up a point for riding time at the end.
At 184, seventh-ranked Sheptock extended his unbeaten streak in dual matches to 28 with a 7-2 decision over Nick Vetterlein. Just like Asper, Sheptock scored takedowns in each period to secure the win. The Northampton, Pa., native has totaled a team-high 47 takedowns in 15 duals this season and has only been taken to the mat once.
For his effort, Sheptock received the Hudson Taylor Award for the most outstanding performance by a Terrapin.
The most entertaining match of the night came at 197 where 18th-ranked Christian Boley avenged a loss from Midlands to Derrick Borlie. After Borlie scored a takedown in first and an escape in the second, Boley trailed 3-1 entering the third period.
Starting in the down position, Boley quickly escaped to the cut the deficit to one. With under a minute remaining, Boley got his first takedown of the match to take a 4-3 lead. Borlie quickly escaped to the tie the match. Twelve seconds later, Boley shot the leg and scored what appeared to be the winning takedown. But in the waning moments, Borlie reversed Boley and tied the match at the buzzer to send it to overtime.
In sudden victory, Boley tallied a takedown 12 seconds before the end of the period to put the Terps up 15-13.
Virginia Tech won a decision at 285 to regain a lead it would not relinquish.
"Last week, we had to sit on the Navy match all week,” said McCoy. “This way, we can get back out there tomorrow night with it fresh in our minds. Hopefully, our guys are fired up, upset about this and want to make a statement tomorrow."
Maryland is back in action Saturday night at Comcast Pavilion against North Carolina at 7 p.m.
#9 Virginia Tech 20, Maryland 19
141: Shane Arechiga (MD) wins by medical forfeit, (0-6)