Mountaineer Wrestlers Gain Revenge, Crush Pitt

The Mountaineer wrestling team delivered some payback for their basketball bretheren by smacking Pitt 29-8 in Pittsburgh on Friday evening.

Pitt had won seven straight dual matches coming in to the evening, but the Panthers were no match for the Mountaineers on the evening. WVU won the opening five matchups as they routed the Panthers for the second straight year.

The match started in WVU's wheelhouse, with Tom McMath at 165 pounds getting an 8-4 win over Pitt's Francis Iorfido. The win got West Virginia off to an early 3-0 lead which they would never relinquish.

At 174, number one ranked Greg Jones got a stiff test from 13th ranked Carl Fronhofer, but a takedown with five seconds to go by Jones gave him a 5-3 win and put the Mountaineers up 6-0 in the match.

Ryan Wilman dominated Mike Croyle in the 184 pound weight class, racking up five minutes of ride time on the way to a 9-0 blanking. The major decision put WVU up 10-0 in the match.

The 197 pound class matchup featured WVU's Adrian Thompson against Gregg Osbeck. Thompson quickly moved out in front of Osbeck with three first period takedowns, then gathered additional points with a third period takedown and three stalling calls against Osbeck on the way to a 14-4 victory. With the major decision, West Virginia moved out to a 14-0 lead in the match.

Heavyweights Brent Miller and Robert Kail brought identical 15-8 records to the mat, and the matchup played out in a similarly close fashion. Leading 4-3 late in the third period, WVU's Moose recorded a late takedown to secure the win and stake the Mountaineers to a 17-0 lead in the match.

At 125, Greg White wrestled in place of Seth Lisa for WVU against Jordan Sianni. The substitution short circuited an anticipated matchup of top twenty wrestlers, as both Lisa and Sianni are among the nation's finest.

White, in his first outing of the season, was unable to get any offense going against Sianni, who scored a 15-0 technical fall to cut WVU's lead to 17-5.

WVU's Brandon Lauer faced Pitt's Mike May at 133 and quickly snuffed any hopes of a Pitt rally with a second period pin that pushed WVU's lead out to an insurmountable 23-5.

With the match put away, Shane Cunanan wrestled his way to a smooth 6-3 win over Ron Tarquinio to push WVU's lead out to 26-5. Cunanan was never headed as he kept Tarquinio in check throughout the contest.

WVU's Billy Smith and Pitt's Justin Giovinco faced off in a battle of top twenty wrestlers at 149 pounds, and the match was a close one as advertised. An early reversal by Giovinco proved to be the difference as the Pitt wrestler recorded the Panthers' second win of the night by a 4-3 margin. The win cut WVU's lead to 26-8.

In the final match of the evening, WVU's Matt Lebe squared off at 157 pounds against Pitt's Justin Nestor and recorded a workmanlike 5-2 win. The Mountaineers' eighth win of the night gave West Virginia a 29-8 win. Couple with WVU's 33-2 win last year, the Mountaineers have outscored the Panthers 62-10 over the past two seasons.

WVU remains atop the Eastern Wrestling League with a 5-0 record, while Pitt fell to 4-2 in the conference. The Mountaineers face Ohio University at home on Saturday at the WVU Coliseum.

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