No. 9 Wrestling Escapes American, 22-17
Feb. 12, 2010
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The ninth-ranked University of Maryland wrestling team received clutch performances from No. 3 Hudson Taylor and Patrick Gilmore in the final two matches to overcome a 17-12 deficit and defeat American 22-17 Friday night at Comcast Pavilion.
Maryland and American each won five matches, but bonus points by No. 14 Josh Asper (six for a pinfall), Taylor (six for a pinfall) and Gilmore (four for a major decision) helped the Terps prevail. Head coach Kerry McCoy came away impressed with the fight of his team in a back-and-forth match that featured six lead changes.
"We really had to battle tonight," said McCoy. "We talked about a lack of fight earlier in the season, but now you can really see our guys are turning it up. I'm happy with the effort we're getting from the guys even when they're not coming out on top. You can see how hard they're working for this."
Deemed the "Battle of the Beltway" due to the two schools' proximity to each other, it was evident early on that the match would be a close one.
Each of the first three matches was decided by just three points. No. 16 Jasen Borshoff of American took a 4-1 decision over Pat Strizki to give the Eagles an early 3-0 lead, but Mookie Golden answered back with a 3-0 decision over Thomas Williams to even the score at 3-3. Golden has won seven matches in a row, including three straight dual matches in which he hasn't allowed an opponent to score a single point.
At 141 pounds, No. 9 Alex Krom found himself in a tight match against Jordan Lipp. With the score tied at 2-2 midway through the second period, Krom got a takedown to go ahead 4-2 and used an escape in the final stanza to earn a 5-2 decision.
Jon Kohler typified the fight that McCoy spoke of in a battle with No. 11 Kyle Borshoff at 149 pounds. Borshoff got out to a big lead and nearly pinned Kohler late in the match, but the junior used several escapes to keep the match within striking distance. Kohler ultimately lost 14-7, but didn't allow his opponent to gain any bonus points as American tied the match at 6-6.
American briefly retook the lead when No. 4 Steve Fittery took a 9-0 major decision over Kyle John at 157 pounds, but No. 14 Josh Asper reclaimed the lead for Maryland. On the attack from the beginning, Asper pinned Tanner Shaffer in 1:34 to give Maryland a 12-10 lead.
The six points from Asper's pin were crucial as American won the next two bouts. Phillip Barreiro took a 7-3 decision over Bradley Nielson at 174 pounds and No. 4 Mike Cannon got a 12-4 major decision over Corey Peltier at 184 pounds to bring the team score to 17-12 in favor of American.
That setup the heroics by Taylor and Gilmore. Taylor needed just 1:38 to pin Kenneth Clessas as Maryland regained the lead 18-17. The pin was the 21st of the season for Taylor as he improved his record to 34-2 on the season.
Gilmore still had to win his match in order to provide Maryland with the victory, and he did so easily. The junior dominated from the onset, recording three takedowns and a near-fall en route to a 10-2 victory.
It marked the third time this season the Terps have trailed going into the final two matches only to have Taylor record a pin and Gilmore clinch victory at heavyweight. The duo also pulled it off in comeback wins over then-No. 4 Cornell and then-No. 22 Wisconsin. The importance of having the pair at the end of a match was not lost on McCoy.
"It's huge having them there," said McCoy. "Anytime we're within striking distance going into 197 pounds I feel good about our chances. It's important to have that and they really stepped up to the plate and made it happen."
Maryland will honor its senior class - one of the most prominent in school history - Sunday against Hofstra. The match is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. at Comcast Pavilion.
No. 9 Maryland 22, American 17