(ARGO ATHLETICS MEDIA RELEASE)
DICKINSON, N.D. – After losing three of its last four duals, (7) University of Providence men’s wrestling team is back to its winning ways, defeating Dickinson State University 31-13 despite forfeiting one match. UP had 3 pins and a major decision while sliding three new wrestlers into the starting lineup and moving another up a weight class.
“We moved a couple guys around in our lineup and I think that is really going to help us. We put exclamation points on a lot of matches and got the bonus points that we weren’t getting against some tougher teams,” Head Coach Caleb Schaeffer. “This shows that we can still be dominant when we need to be dominant.”
With senior Isaac Wilson moving up from 125 to 133 for the rest of the season, and UP otherwise thin at 125, the dual started off with the Argos forfeiting the match and giving the Bluehawks a 6 point lead.
Wilson made up quite a bit of that advantage with a 9-0 major decision, making him 6-1 on the year when wrestling at 133. Junior Travis Vermulm got his first dual start of the year for UP and did his best to fend off a technical fall, losing by major decision (9-1).
With the score at 10-4 DSU, the Argos had two of the team’s top wrestlers up next and they quickly turned the tide.
At 149, redshirt-sophomore (5) Shonn Roberts, the 2017 NAIA Gorrarian Award Winner, worked his pinning magic, earning 6 points for UP and tying up the dual with a win by Fall (1:24). Teammate (8) Casey Dobson wasn’t quite as quick as Roberts but wasn’t far off, winning his match by Fall (2:44) to put the Argos ahead 16-10.
UP’s next wrestler was much less proven in transfer sophomore Joshua Beckler. The match at 165 was Beckler’s first action for UP in a dual, although he has had some bright points in tournaments earlier in the year. As a dual starter, he didn’t keep up Robert’s and Dobson’s pin streak, but he did get a win, pulling out a 3-1 decision.
That set up another top dog for the Argos, (5) Adrian Lyons-Lopez at 174. The junior took a little longer than UP’s other ranked wrestlers, but ended with the same result, winning by Fall (5:47).
Another new face in the lineup came at 184, with redshirt-sophomore Alex Quick stepping in at 184 while the team’s top two wrestlers at the weight class (8) Randy Keesler and (10) Tyler Webley got a rest. Quick’s match was a battle that was scoreless after the first three minutes, but as the bout went longer, Quick got stronger and ended with a confident 7-4 decision.
Leading 28-10, the overall result was decided before the final two weight classes, but (9) John Hensley added another 3 points to UP’s total with an 11-5 decision at 197. At 285, junior (8) Matt Hopkins had his first true dud match of the season, losing a 3-2 decision to an unranked opponent.
After going 1-2 at the national duals, the win brings the Argos back to the dual dominance that it had earlier in the season. The team’s record is now 8-5 with all five losses coming either against top-15 NAIA teams or NCAA Division II teams. UP will get back to wrestling ranked teams for its next action, hosting (T14) Embry-Riddle (Ariz.) in a dual on February 2 at 7 p.m.