March 18, 2010
Team Scores & Brackets
OMAHA, Neb. - The Purdue wrestling team got off to a solid start at the 2010 NCAA Championships, held at the Qwest Center in Omaha, Neb. on Thursday afternoon, going 4-3 in the first session and scoring eight team points. Freshman 125-pounder Cashé Quiroga led the Boilermakers' effort, scoring an upset win over a seeded wrestler as Purdue sits tied for 18th place after the opening session.
Quiroga opened the championships in strong fashion, upsetting seventh-seeded James Nicholson of Old Dominion in the first round, 4-3. Neither wrestler was able to score in the first, but Nicholson came the closest getting in on a deep shot about halfway through the period. Quiroga displayed solid defense, fending off the takedown and ending the frame in a scoreless tie. Nicholson took the first lead with an escape in the second, and after Quiroga knotted the count to start the third, Nicholson opened a 3-1 lead with the first takedown with about 1:30 left in the match. Quiroga escaped to cut the lead to one, and took his turn on the offense in the waning seconds, ducking under Nicholson and getting behind the arms for two points and a 4-3 lead. Quiroga needs to ride for 14 seconds to hang on to the win, and did just that, clinging to Nicholson until the final whistle and earning the victory. Quiroga moves on to face another first-round upset victor in Joe Langel of Rutgers tonight. Langel advanced with an 11-6 victory over 10th-seeded Christopher Notte of Oklahoma State in the first round.
Senior Nick Bertucci also earned a first-round win for the Boilermakers, avenging a regular-season loss to Cal Poly's Nick Fisher with a 4-1 decision. Nearly the entire match was contested on the mat as there was about 20 seconds before Bertucci's first takedown, and a little over a minute after Fisher's escape, but the last two periods consisted of nothing but the ground game. Bertucci rode Fisher through the whole second, despite nearly being reversed several times, and Fisher almost kept Bertucci down through the third, but the Boilermaker senior scored a reversal in the final 30 seconds to seal the win and advance to the second round. Bertucci squares off with top-seeded Lance Palmer of Ohio State tonight in the championship bracket.
Ninth-seeded Purdue junior Luke Manuel survived a first-round battle with Edinboro's Philip Moricone, needing a tie-break overtime period to earn a 4-2 win at 174 pounds. The seven minutes of regulation offered little action as they headed to sudden victory tied at 1-1 with an escape apiece. The first minute of overtime was similar as neither wrestler scored, but Purdue fans had a small scare as Manuel was hit with a stalling warning about halfway through the period. Moricone started the tie-break down, escaping quickly and taking a 2-1 lead, but Manuel matched his escape in the second 30-second period and followed with a takedown in the last second to score and advance. Manuel will have his fourth match of the season against Colby Covington of Oregon State in tonight's second-round bout, leading the season series, 2-1. The No. 8 seed at 174, Covington advanced with a major decision over Rider's Jim Resnick in the first round.
Junior Logan Brown rounded out the success in the first session for Purdue, picking up a 6-2 win over Richard Starks of Army. Brown was dominant throughout, scoring takedowns in the first and third periods and riding Starks through the majority of the second. Brown's first period takedown was a nice single-leg, securing Stark's right leg, elevating and taking him to the mat for two. The third-period score was a solid blast double-leg effort, driving straight through Starks to seal the win. Brown's two takedowns push him over the century mark this season, becoming the second Boilermaker this year, joining Quiroga, and 13th individual in school history to score 100 takedowns in a season. Brown advances to face the No. 2 seed at 197 pounds in Craig Brester of Nebraska, who advanced with a pin against Tyler Smith of Rider in the opening session.
Juniors Akif Eren, Juan Archuleta and Colton Salazar dropped their first round contests on Thursday as Eren fell to ninth-seeded Steve Bell of Maryland at 133 pounds, 6-0, Archuleta dropped a 7-2 contest to second-seeded Jamal Parks of Oklahoma State at 141 pounds, while Salazar was pinned by the No. 9 seed at 157 pounds, Matt Moley of Bloomsburg, at 6:31. All three drop to the consolation bracket where Eren will face Bryan Ortenzio of Penn, Archuleta has UNC Greensboro's Ivan Lopouchanski and Salazar meets the No. 8 seed Bryce Saddoris of Navy.
Tonight's action starts at 7:30 (ET) and will consist of the championship second round and the consolation pigtails and first round matches. Continue following the Boilermaker at the Purdue Wrestling Twitter Page and visit PurdueSports.com tonight for a recap of the second session.