Dec. 18, 2012
KENT, Ohio – The Northern Illinois wrestling team fell Tuesday to Kent State, 29-9, in the Mid-American Conference opener for both schools.
With the loss, the Huskies fell to 5-3 and 0-1 in conference play this year, while the Golden Flashes improved to 1-1 overall and 1-0 in the MAC.
“The team can learn to grind with their heart and guts after a loss like this,” said NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig. “Nick, Tyler and Jared all fought hard and won their battles.”
The match was decidedly in the hosts favor early on, as Stevie Mitcheff claimed a 10-0 major decision over Huskie sophomore Derek Elmore. After giving up a takedown in each of the first two periods, Elmore gave up a reversal midway through the third period to fall behind 6-0 before a three-point nearfall and a riding time bonus resulted in a 10-point defeat.
Nick Smith, though, returned the favor with a 7-3 win over Kyle Bauer at 133 pounds. After staking a 3-2 lead after the first period, an early second period escape by Bauer knotted things up at three apiece. However, the NIU junior took control of the match in the third period with an escape-takedown combo to put the Huskies on the board.
NIU would take the lead on Kent when Tyler Argue defeated Luke Kern at 141 with a 7-6 overtime decision. Despite taking a 5-0 lead after one, Argue had to hold off a furious rally by Kern that forced overtime. In the extra session, the Matteson, Ill., native scored an escape, while shutting out Kern to give Northern a 6-4 lead through three matches.
The Golden Flashes would reclaim the lead at 149 when Nick Carr topped Rob Jillard by a 10-4 margin. Jillard got out to a 3-2 lead early in the match, but a strong second and third period by Carr was Jillard’s ultimate undoing.
KSU extended their lead at the halfway point when Andrew Morse lost an 8-2 decision against 2012 NCAA Championships qualifier Mallie Shuster. At 165, it was an almost identical result, as Dan Burk lost by way of an 8-2 decision against Caleb Marsh, pushing Kent’s lead to 13-6.
Matt Mougin looked well on his way to sparking an NIU comeback attempt at 174 pounds. However, the redshirt junior got flipped and pinned by Sam Wheeler, erasing what would have been at least a 6-3 win for Mougin and giving the Flashes a 19-6 lead.
“Matt dropped a match where he was in total control before a gash resulting from a scramble stopped the match for several minutes,” Ludwig said. “He lost focus and was pinned in another scramble. That’s a nine point swing.”
KSU clinched the win when Casey Newburg – another NCAA qualifier from a year ago – defeated Bryan Loughlin in a 13-4 major decision. Former NCAA champion and top-ranked Dustin Kilgore added to the lead with a pin of NIU’s Parker Settecase 48 seconds into the match.
Jared Torrence ended the match on a positive note for NIU, though, with a 2-1 win over NCAA qualifier Keith Witt.
The Huskies return to action Saturday, Dec. 29, when they head to Evanston, Ill., for the 50th annual Midlands Championships. The tournament starts and 9:30 a.m. and continues Sunday, Dec. 30, at noon.
Kent State 29, Northern Illinois 9
125: Stevie Mitcheff (KSU) maj. dec. Derek Elmore (NIU), 10-0
133: Nick Smith (NIU) dec. Kyle Bauer (KSU), 7-3
141: Tyler Argue (NIU) dec. Luke Kern (KSU), 7-6 (OT)
149: Nick Carr (KSU) dec. Rob Jillard (NIU), 10-4
157: Mallie Shuster (KSU) dec. Andrew Morse (NIU), 8-2
165: Caleb Marsh (KSU) dec. Dan Burk (NIU), 8-2
174: Sam Wheeler (KSU) pins Matt Mougin (NIU), 6:07
184: Casey Newburg (KSU) maj. dec. Bryan Loughlin (NIU), 13-4
197: #1 Dustin Kilgore (KSU) pins Parker Settecase (NIU), 0:47
285: Jared Torrence (NIU) dec. Keith Witt (KSU), 2-1