Bulls Fall to Ohio in Conference Home Opener, 22-17
BUFFALO, NY– The University at Buffalo wrestling team
opened Mid-American Conference action by falling to Ohio, 22-17, at
Alumni Arena on Saturday afternoon. Despite the loss in the battle
against Ohio, the war against cancer was won. The Bulls and the UB
Division of Athletics raised $30,097 at "Takedown Cancer" to
benefit former co-captain and 2008 graduate Jeff Parker, Carly's
Club of Buffalo and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston,
Opening the day at 157, senior Andrew Stella held the lead through two periods. Choosing bottom to start the third period, Stella earned an escape with Ohio's Clay Tucker countering with a takedown to tie the bout at 3-3. With 45 seconds remaining, Stella earned a late escape but Tucker was able to score a takedown with no time remaining to collect a 5-4 decision.
Earning a pair of takedowns in the first period of the 165-pound bout, sophomore John-Martin Cannon held onto a 4-2 lead through two periods. In the third, Cannon dominated Ohio's Kevin Christensen on top, erasing the Bobcat's chance of riding time points. Slamming Christensen to the mat numerous times, the 20th nationally-ranked wrestler recorded the Bulls' first decision, 4-2, for his 40th overall career victory.
After dropping 174 by fall and 184 by decision, junior Jimmy Hamel stopped Ohio in its tracks by upsetting 12th nationally-ranked Eric Schuth. Following a scoreless first period, Schuth scored the bout's first point to start the second period off an escape. Facing a 1-0 deficit to start the third, Hamel was able to somersault out of Schuth's grasp for an escape to tie the bout at 1-1. With less than a minute remaining, Schuth would be docked a penalty point for locking his hands to give Hamel a 2-1 lead. Schuth was able to send the match to overtime by earning 1:19 of riding time.
In the first round of the 30-second overtime, each would exchange an escape leading to a continuous battle. In ultimate overtime, Hamel would rip away from Schuth's grasp for an escape to capture a 4-3 decision over the 12th nationally-ranked wrestler.
"Jimmy has had an up and down season so far, but in his last two outings he has defeated top-15 wrestlers. He went into this bout with confidence and was able to walk away with a hard-fought overtime victory," said head coach Jim Beichner.
At 125, senior Dan Bishop dominated Ohio's Gabe Ramos in the first period for an 11-0 lead, scoring three three-point near falls. In the seocnd period, Ramos nor Bishop would be able to score. In the third period, Ramos was able to score five points through a pair of takedowns and an escape. Bishop countered Ramos' five points with six of his own including a takedown at the buzzer and 3:33 of riding time to secure a 17-5 major decision.
Sophomore Kevin Smith kept the Bulls rolling with a 7-5 decision over Quentin Keyes at 133. At the beginning of the second, Smith threw Keyes on his back for a two-point near fall. With Smith holding a 6-3 lead entering the third period, Ramos shocked the 19th nationally-ranked wrestler, flipping him to his back for a two-point near fall to start the third. Smith was able to fight through Keyes' chance to close out the match by fall. Returning to his feet, Smith was awarded a point due to Keyes locking his hands with 20 seconds remaining to record the 7-5 decision.
With a major deicison loss at 141, the outcome of an Ohio victory was set. Despite the loss, sophomore Desi Green dominated OU's Darrin Boing by capturing a 25-10 technical fall at 6:57 to end the dual. Green managed to take a 10-4 lead over Boing in the first period off five takedowns. The 16th nationally-ranked wrestler finished the 149-pound bout with 12 takedowns and an escape.
Jeff Parker and his family with the UB wrestling team "On paper we were not favored to win. Our guys wrestled extremely hard and continuously fought. We battled hard as a team and will look for that same attitude to carry over through our remaining MAC schedule. There is a lot of heart and desire on this team and that is what will propel us to victory," said Beichner.
At today's "Takedown Cancer" event, the Bulls managed to raise $30,097 through various efforts including a ticket raffle, takedowns pledges, chance raffle and the generous monetary donations received. The money raised from the event will benefit former wrestling co-captain and 2008 graduate Jeff Parker, who is in the fight of his life against cancer as well as Carly's Club of Buffalo and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, MA.
"Our original goal was to raise $10,000 but we managed to triple that number. I cannot describe my feelings of what this means to Jeff as well as Carly's Club and the Dana-Farber Institute. We may have lost the battle on the mat, but we won the war against cancer," said Beichner.
Continuing in MAC dual action, Buffalo will travel to Eastern Michigan on Wednesday, February 3 to face the Eagles at 7:00 pm. The Bulls will remain on the road as they travel to MAC opponent and 20th nationally-ranked Kent State on Sunday, February 7 at 1:00 pm.