CMU Wrestling Finishes 15th at NCAA Championships

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Jason Mester finished fourth and David Bolyard took sixth to help the Central Michigan University wrestling team take 15th at the NCAA Championships.

This is the first time since 1999 that Central Michigan has finished in the top 15 at the NCAA Championships.

The championships are being held in St. Louis, Mo., from Thursday, March 18, until Saturday, March 20. The final session will be tonight, Saturday March 20, with the championship finals. The finals will be televised live on ESPN2.

Jason Mester (Mineral Point, Wis./Sr.) looked for revenge in his consolation semifinal match as he took on No. 3-seed Teyon Ware of Oklahoma. Ware had beaten Mester twice, once in the championship semifinals at last year's NCAA Championship and earlier this season at the National Duals. Mester scored first, notching a takedown midway through the first period. Ware got on the board with an escape 30 seconds later and that was the last scoring in the period.

Mester took bottom to begin the second and quickly escaped for a two-point lead. The match would enter the third with Mester up by two and Ware starting on bottom. Ware escaped early in the third to make it a one-point match. The action was fierce the rest of the match with Ware getting deep on a couple of shots, but he could not finish, giving Mester his revenge, 3-2, and a spot in the third-place match.

In his third-place match at 141, Mester took on No. 1-seed Scott Moore of Virginia. Mester and Moore have a long history beginning in 2002 when Mester eliminated Moore from the NCAA Championships in the consolation first round. Moore avenged that loss last season in the consolation semifinals when he pinned Mester. Their last meeting was at the MSU Open finals this season where Moore came away with a 7-5 victory.

Mester's revenge was not to be as Moore took Mester down a minute into the match and locked a cradle to pin Mester at the 1:43 mark of the match. The loss gave Mester fourth place in the championships, the CMU's first top four placer since 2000 when Ryan Cunningham took third. He also becomes the fifth CMU wrestler to finish in the top four and the sixth wrestler to earn All-America honors twice.

He finishes his career with a record of 104-25, which ties him with Ryan Cunningham for the eighth-most career victories. His career winning percentage of .805, ranks as the third best all-time in CMU wrestling history. His season winning percentage of .900 (32-4) stands as tied for fifth-best in history, with Jeff Mills' season in 1985-86.

David Bolyard (Akron, Ohio/Jr.) took on No. 3-seed Matt R. King of Edinboro in his consolation semifinals match at 165. King defeated Bolyard at the first tournament of the season, the Eastern Michigan Open. King scored first with a takedown midway through the first period and rode Bolyard out for the remainder of the period. King extended his lead in the second with an escape and a takedown for a five-point lead. The match entered the third period that way with King notch his third takedown of the place 30 seconds into the period. King rode Bolyard out the rest of the match for an 8-0 victory.

That loss sent Bolyard to the fifth-place against John Clark of Ohio State. Bolyard scored the first points of the match with a takedown 20 seconds in. Clark countered with a reversal to tie the match and then rode Bolyard out for the rest of the first, scoring two nearfall points as time ran out to gain the lead. Clark extended his lead with a takedown 10 seconds into the second period and then rode Bolyard out for the entire period to lock up the riding-time point. The riding-time point gave Clark a five-point lead entering the third period.

Clark had the choice to begin the period and took top. Clark would use two stalling points and a late takedown to secure the major decision, 11-3. The loss gave Bolyard sixth-place, one place higher then he entered the tournament. Bolyard finishes the season 31-8 and a first-time All-American.

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