Wrestling ends regular season with 30-9 road loss to No. 4 Michigan
Much like facing No. 3 Missouri, Central Michigan wrestling was outmatched by a top-five opponent, falling to No. 4 Michigan 30-9 Sunday in Ann Arbor.
CMU dropped seven of 10 individual matches.
“We had some good things happen,” said head coach Tom Borrelli. “Jordan Atienza beat (a) returning All-American (Kevin Beazley), Colin Heffernan beat (a) returning All-American (Alec Pantaleo), then Mason Smith (pulled) out a win. I think that’s the fourth time he’s beat (Sal Profaci).”
The Chippewas finish the regular season with an 8-6 overall record (5-2 Mid-American Conference).
CMU finishes the regular season with two-straight road losses. Whether the skid effects the teams confidence, according to Borrelli, is how the team responds.
Junior Jordan Atienza (197 pounds) earned an 8-7 victory over No. 12 Kevin Beazley with a late reversal. Tenth-ranked 141-pound wrestler Mason Smith earned a 6-5 win over Sal Profaci. Senior Colin Heffernan (157) went to sudden victory to defeat No. 6 Alec Pantaleo 6-4.
Sophomore Logan Parks (165) started today’s showdown against No. 9 Logan Massa. Parks would drop the opening bout via major decision 13-5 after Massa earned 1:41 of riding time.
Seniors CJ Brucki and Jordan Ellingwood both dropped their matches featuring top 20 clashes.
Brucki (No. 14 at 174 pounds) lost 8-2 to No. 5 Myles Amine. Ellingwood (No. 15 at 184) lost via major decision to No. 5 Domenic Abounder 12-2.
"They didn’t wrestle very well today," Borrelli said. "They know they’re better than that. We have to do better at the MAC tournament."
All three of CMU’s redshirt freshmen failed to earn an individual victory against the Wolverines.
Heavyweight Matt Stencel was pinned by No. 1 Adam Coon 3:19 into the bout. Drew Hildebrandt (125) lost to No. 12 Drew Mattin 4-1. Dresden Simon (133) lost via technical fall to No. 2 Stevan Micic.
Trailing 25-6 Borrelli decided to rest No. 4 149-pound wrestler Justin Oliver.
“We felt like it was best not to wrestle him today,” Borrelli said. “The meet was kind of out of hand. We didn’t want to risk tweaking something right now.”
"I feel like he’ll be fine for the MAC tournament. I think he’ll be really healthy and ready to go."
True freshman Nolan Saxton received the nod at 149 pounds. The Chippewa Hills alum lost via technical fall at the 3:15 mark against Malik Amine.
CMU Wrestling gets the upcoming weekend off before the 2018 MAC Championships March 4 and 5 at Mcguire Arena.
“We’re going to train pretty hard this coming week,” Borrelli said. “We’ll have a really tough week (of practice) this week and then really back off the following week."