Jan. 30, 2014
Meet Notes | Live Results | Live Blog (ODUSports.com)
DeKALB, Ill. - The Northern Illinois University wrestling team caps off the month of January Friday night when they head to Virginia to face Old Dominion.
The dual between the Huskies and Monarchs starts at 6:30 p.m. inside ODU's Ted Constant Center.
"There will be a lot of tough match ups in this dual," said NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig. "These conference duals are always intense. We will focus on the things we do well and bring a competitive fire."
The Huskies will aim to end January the same way they began the month - on a positive note. Last weekend, NIU suffered a 31-0 defeat at the hands of then-#7 Missouri. Despite the final tally, though, several Huskies came close to pulling off major upsets, including Rob Jillard against #1 Drake Houdashelt at 149 and Shaun'Qae McMurtry against #8 Zach Toal at 165.
Meanwhile, Old Dominion holds a 5-8 overall mark and a 1-2 MAC clip heading into Friday. The Monarchs are led on the mats by a pair of nationally-ranked opponents in #5 Chris Mecate (141 pounds) and #20 Alexander Richardson (149 pounds). ODU is coming off a 2-0 weekend on the road, knocking off Binghamton and Buffalo.
Live results will be available on TrackWrestling.com and on ODU's live blog.
Projected NIU Lineup
125: Nick Harrison
133: Nick Smith
141: Tyler Argue
149: Rob Jillard
157: Andrew Morse
165: Shaun'Qae McMurtry
174: Matt Mougin
184: Caleb Busson
197: Shawn Scott
285: Jared Torrence
Projected Old Dominion Lineup
125: Brandon Jeske
133: Scott Festejo OR Michael Hayes
141: #5 Chris Mecate
149: #20 Alexander Richardson
157: Tristan Warner
165: Devin Geoghegan OR Dillon Geoghegan
174: Billy Curling OR Austin Coburn
184: Jack Dechow
197: Kevin Beazley OR Jake Henderson
285: Matt Tourdot
Scouting Old Dominion
Old Dominion enters Friday with a 5-8 overall record and a 1-2 mark in the conference. Last weekend, the Monarchs went 2-0 up in New York, topping Binghamton, 21-12, before earning their first-ever MAC victory in a 21-10 decision at Buffalo. Despite their record, ODU has faced seven ranked teams this season, including current Top 25 teams Wisconsin, Iowa State, Virginia Tech, Edinboro and Virginia. The Monarchs boast two individuals ranked in the InterMat polls in #5 Chris Mecate (141 pounds) and #20 Alexander Richardson (149). NIU holds a 2-0 series edge following wins in 2007 and 2010.
Friday's dual at Old Dominion will mark the longest roadtrip the Huskies take this season. As the crow flies, there are 752 miles that separate DeKalb from Norfolk, Va. In fact, a trip this long is so rare for the NIU wrestling program that the last time they traveled this far from DeKalb was in 2006, when the team competed at the Cliff Keen Invitational in Las Vegas, Nev. The matchup will also be the first time in three meetings that NIU and ODU will face off on one of the school's campuses, as the previous two meetings have been on neutral floors (Northern Iowa in 2007 and Indiana in 2010).
Five Huskies Place at Grand View Open
While the starters were battling Missouri Saturday, seven other Huskies were out in Des Moines, Iowa, competing in the Grand View Open. Five of those seven placed at the tournament. Leading the way for that group was Derek Elmore, who won the 133-pound bracket. In addition, Jordan Northrup (3rd - 133), Trace Engelkes (4th - 165), Bryan Loughlin (4th - 184) and Sal Annoreno (6th - 141) all found their way onto the podium.
The Big 5-0
NIU redshirt senior Matt Mougin reached the 50-career-win mark Jan. 19 when he got a forfeit Sunday against Ashland. Meanwhile, Jared Torrence still sits one victory away from 50 career wins. Earlier this season, senior Nick Smith earned his 50th career victory with an 8-4 decision against Clarion's Sam Sherlock at the EMU Duals on Nov. 16.
The Huskies close out the home portion of their schedule Saturday, Feb. 8, when they host the Kent State Golden Flashes on Senior Day. The dual begins at 3 p.m. inside Victor E. Court.