Jan. 29, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue wrestling team said a bittersweet goodbye to its three seniors on Sunday, losing a narrow, 21-18 dual to 18th-ranked visiting conference rival Northwestern at Holloway Gymnasium. The two squads split the 10 matches, 5-5, but the Wildcats picked up a few more bonus points, improving to 7-4 (3-4 Big Ten), while the Boilermakers dropped to 7-9 overall and 2-5 in conference duals.
All three Purdue seniors, Matt Fields, A.J. Kissel and Roger Vukobratovich, earned victories in the final home dual of their careers, while 13th-ranked junior Ivan Lopouchanski added a win at 149 pounds and 19th-ranked freshman Braden Atwood won at 184 pounds.
"We battled hard today and I'm really proud of our guys, especially our seniors," said Purdue head coach Scott Hinkel. "We're really getting close to where we want to be and it's all coming at the right time. There's just a month left in the season and we're trying to finish on the way up."
Starting at 125 pounds, things went back and forth early as the two teams traded the first four matches. Ninth-ranked Northwestern junior Levi Mele opened the dual with a 6-0 decision over Purdue sophomore Camden Eppert. Mele scored takedowns in the first and third periods, and while Eppert came dangerously close to reversing his opponent on a few occasions, he was never able to get on the board. Fields got the start at 133 pounds for the Boilermakers and evened the count at 3-3 with a 7-1 decision over Wildcat freshman Jameson Oster. In a bout that featured scramble after scramble, Fields got on top early with a takedown and followed up with a pair of back points to grab a 4-0 lead. No points came in the second as Oster chose bottom and Fields stayed on top for the full two minutes, and Fields added a few more points in the third, taking the bottom position and forfeiting a penalty point before reversing Oster for his team-best 13th of the season and finishing with a riding-time point. Fields is now alone in ninth-place in school history with 34 career reversals.
The Wildcats regained the lead at 141 pounds as freshman Pat Greco used a pair of takedowns to earn a narrow 5-4 victory over Purdue freshman Nick Lawrence, but Lopouchanski bounced right back at 149 pounds, coming from behind against game Northwestern sophomore Kaleb Friedley for an 8-6 decision. Friedley jumped out to a 4-1 lead with two first-period takedowns, but Lopouchanski rallied in the second, reversing Friedley and then cutting him loose to add a takedown and tie the match after two, 5-5. Friedley escaped early in the third period to take a slight advantage, but Lopouchanski responded with another takedown to go ahead, 7-6, and Friedley gave away another point with an illegal slam late in the match to put up the final score.
The Wildcats took control of the match at 157 pounds as second-ranked, undefeated junior Jason Welch scored a fall over Purdue junior Tommy Churchard in 1:12, giving Northwestern a 12-6 lead going to the intermission. The things stayed the Wildcats way after the break as freshmen Pierce Harger and Lee Munster posted back-to-back wins at 165 and 174 to make it a 21-6 Northwestern advantage. Harger used a five-point maneuver in the second period against Purdue sophomore Kyle Mosier to secure an 8-3 decision, while Munster, ranked 13th in the nation at 174 pounds, needed all of 13 seconds to pin Boilermaker freshman Drake Stein.
The Boilermakers came storming back through the last three matches as Atwood, Kissel and Vukobratovich notched three straight wins. Atwood directly responded at 184 pounds with his eighth fall of the season, sticking Northwestern junior, and Indiana native, Marcus Shrewsbury in 1:06. Atwood is now in a three-way tie for the team pin lead with Fields and freshman 141-pounder Brandon Nelsen. Kissel followed with a 7-0 decision over Wildcat senior John Schoen at 197 pounds, keeping the Boilermakers alive and cutting the lead to six, 21-15. Kissel nearly turned Schoen to his back near the end of the first period, but was stopped by the official for a potentially-dangerous position. Kissel added a reversal in the second and another takedown in the third, while piling up a few minutes of riding time in the victory.
Despite the team loss, Vukobratovich brought the home crowd to its feet in the final match of the dual, upsetting 15th-ranked Northwestern freshman Mike McMullan, 3-1 at heavyweight. Vukobratovich nearly had takedowns in the first and second periods, grabbing McMullan in a body lock on the edge in the first and nearly securing a cradle in the second, but both times the official did not award Vukobratovich control and took the match back to a neutral position. The two wrestlers got into a scramble late in the match as McMullan shot, Vukobratovich sprawled and eventually picked up a leg. The Boilermaker senior worked for the takedown and was awarded two just before time expired, earning his career-best 17th win of the season and defeated his second ranked opponent of the season.
The Boilermakers close out their Big Ten dual schedule next Sunday, heading to archrival Indiana University for the 98th meeting in series history. For more information on the dual, check PurdueSports.com this week for a full preview, interviews and match notes.
Purdue 18 – #18 Northwestern 21
Sunday, January 29, 2012
Holloway Gymnasium – West Lafayette, Ind.
125: #9 Levi Mele (NU) def. Camden Eppert (PUR), D 6-0 (PU 0 – NU 3)
133: Matt Fields (PUR) def. Jameson Oster (NU), D 7-1 (PU3 –NU 3)
141: Pat Greco (NU) def. Nick Lawrence (PUR), D 6-4 (PU 3 – NU6)
149: #13 Ivan Lopouchanski (PUR) def. Kaleb Friedley (NU), D 8-6 (PU 6 – NU 6)
157: #2 Jason Welch (NU) def. Tommy Churchard (PUR), Fall 1:12 (PU 6 – NU 12)
165: Pierce Harger (NU) def. Kyle Mosier (PUR), D 8-3 (PU 6 – NU 15)
174: #13 Lee Munster (NU) def. Drake Stein (PUR) Fall :13 (PU 6 – NU 21)
184: #19 Braden Atwood (PUR) def. Marcus Shrewsberry (NU), Fall 1:06 (PU 12 – NU 21)
197: A.J. Kissel (PUR) def. John Schoen (NU), D 7-0 (PU 15 – NU 21)
285: Roger Vukobratovich (PUR) def. #15 Mike McMullan (NU), D 3-1 (PU 18 – NU 21)
125 – #9 Levi Mele (NU) def. Camden Eppert (PUR), D 6-0 (PU 0 – NU 3)
1st Period: Mele T2
2nd Period: (Mele chooses bottom) No score
3rd Period: (Eppert chooses neutral) Mele T2, Mele RT1
133 – Matt Fields (PUR) def. Jameson Oster (NU), D 7-1 (PU3 –NU 3)
1st Period: Fields T2, Fields NF2
2nd Period: (Oster chooses bottom) Fields SW
3rd Period: (Fields chooses bottom) Fields SW, Oster P1, Fields R2, Fields RT1
141 – Pat Greco (NU) def. Nick Lawrence (PUR), D 6-4 (PU 3 – NU6)
1st Period: Greco T2, Lawrence E1
2nd Period: (Greco chooses bottom) Greco E1, Greco SW
3rd Period: (Lawrence chooses bottom) Lawrence E1, Greco T2, Lawrence E1, Greco SW1, Lawrence P1
149 – #13 Ivan Lopouchanski (PUR) def. Kaleb Friedley (NU), D 8-6 (PU 6 – NU 6)
1st Period: Friedley T2, Lopouchanski E1, Friedley T2
2nd Period: (Lopouchanski chooses bottom) Lopouchanski R2, Lopouchanski E1, Lopouchanski T2
3rd Period: (Friedley chooses bottom) Friedley E1, Lopouchanski T2, Lopouchanski P1
157 – #2 Jason Welch (NU) def. Tommy Churchard (PUR), Fall 1:12 (PU 6 – NU 12)
1st Period: Welch T2, Welch Fall 1:12
2nd Period: (choice)
3rd Period: (choice)
165 – Pierce Harger (NU) def. Kyle Mosier (PUR), D 8-3 (PU 6 – NU 15)
1st Period: Harger T2
2nd Period: (Harger chooses bottom) Harger R2, Harger NF3, Mosier R2,
3rd Period: (Mosier chooses bottom) Mosier E1, Harger RT1
174 – #13 Lee Munster (NU) def. Drake Stein (PUR) Fall 0:13 (PU 6 – NU 21)
1st Period: Munster T2, Munster Fall 0:13
184 – #19 Braden Atwood (PUR) def. Marcus Shrewsberry (NU), Fall 1:06 (PU 12 – NU 21)
1st Period: Atwood T2, Atwood Fall 1:06
197 – Result A.J. Kissel (PUR) def. John Schoen (NU), D 7-0 (PU 15 – NU 21)
1st Period: Kissel T2
2nd Period: (Kissel chooses bottom) Kissel R2, Schoen SW
3rd Period: (Schoen chooses neutral) Kissel T2, Kissel RT1
285 – Result Roger Vukobratovich (PUR) def. #15 Mike McMullan (NU), D 3-1 (PU 18 – NU 21)
1st Period: No score
2nd Period: (Vukobratovich chooses bottom) Vukobratovich E1
3rd Period: (McMullan chooses bottom) McMullan E1, Vukobratovich T2