Miller gets start at 174 pounds

Matthew Stephens/Presentation Editor

Mike Miller and Ben Bennett were warming up to wrestle in the 174-pound spot when coach Tom Borrelli delivered the news that Miller would get the start.

Miller, a junior ranked No.1 at that weight class, took the news and walked out on the mat for the first time this season to take on UTC freshman Jake Young.

“Miller had a good week of practice and I knew he really wanted to get out there and wrestle,” Borrelli said. “I wanted to get him going in a match and let him get a feel for what he needs to work on.”

A pinched nerve in his shoulder was scheduled to keep Miller out of the match but, when he was called, on he did not disappoint.

Miller’s defense kept the match low-scoring as the two were tied 1-1 early in the third period. Miller finally earned the only takedown of the match with one minute remanining.

“(Young) stayed in good position and hand-fought well,” Miller said. “It was a good first match for me.”

Miller held on to his two-point lead through the rest of the match to win a 3-1 decision.

“I was excited to get out and shake some of the rust off,” Miller said. “Coming off of an injury, I really wanted to get out and see what I still need to work on.”

Ben Bennett at 184

With the decision to wrestle Miller at 174, redshirt freshman Bennett faced sophomore 184-pounder Jason McCroskey.

Bennett may take over the 184-pound starting spot as the year progresses, however, the freshman took on the competition despite weighing in at 174 pounds.

“I knew it was going to be a match-time decision and I knew there was a good chance I was going to be wrestling at 184,” Bennett said. “I just wanted to go out and wrestle hard no matter who I was taking on.”

The match proved to be a high-scoring event, as Bennett scored a takedown 30 seconds into the match. McCroskey quickly tied the match at 2 with a reversal. Bennett retook control with a reversal of his own and headed into the second period up 4-2.

Bennett closed out the match with a decision, his first official win at CMU.

“I still have a ways to go, but it was not a bad start to the season,” Bennett said. “I’m confident that I can get bigger and wrestle at 184 if I have to.”