Wrestling defeats 10th ranked Michigan 19-18

Closing its three-meet home stand, the Central Michigan wrestling team defeated 10th ranked Michigan 19-18 Thursday night.

The Chippewas improved to 6-2 while Michigan fell to 7-5

Junior Brent Fleetwood (125) kicked off the meet with a 4-0 win over 10 ranked Connor Youtesy with a first period takedown. 

“We looked forward to this for a couple of weeks,” junior Jordan Ellingwood (184) said. “I knew we were pretty good matchup wise. It was big for us. We were confident the whole time.”

Ellingwood's pinfall victory over Michigan’s Aaron Calderon 1:03 into the match scored six points for Central Michigan, which gave the Chippewa’s a 16-15 lead at the time.

“I knew we needed bonus points,” Ellingwood said. “I had full intention of going out and scoring bonus points. It was a big pin.”

Senior Corey Keener (133) dropped his match to 7th ranked Steven Micic 16-6. Keener was nearly pinned in the first period.

Freshman Mason Smith won his second straight match with a 8-0 major decision over Sal Profaci. Sophomore Justin Oliver (149) won his match  8-2 over Freshman Malik Amine, giving Central Michigan a 10-4 lead.

Momentum shifted toward Michigan at 157 pounds. Colin Heffernan lost his match in sudden victory to Brian Murphy. Freshman Logan Parks lost his match by technical fall in the third period to Logan Massa.

174 pounds saw 20th ranked CJ Brucki lose 8-2 over 8th ranked Myles Amine. 197 pounds resulted in 14 ranked Austin Severn lose 3-1 to Jackson Striggow, which was the third time Severn and Striggow have wrestled this year. Severn won the previous two matches.

The Wolverines carried an 18-16 lead going into the final match of the night. CMU's Newton Smerchek versus Michigan’s Alooya Olapo in his dual meet debut. 

“I really focused on the game plan (and) did a lot of praying as well,” Smerchek said. “I just focused on wrestling my kind of match so far this year.”

The only point scored in the match was a second period escape, giving CMU a 19-18 lead.

Head coach Tom Borelli said he was pleased with the team's performance.

“I think it’s important to our guys to be competitive against (Michigan),” Borelli said. “We have mostly Michigan guys, they have a lot of Michigan guys. They wrestled against each other in high school. They were recruited by Michigan. A lot of time, our guys aren’t. It adds a little more fuel to the fire.”

The Chippewas will return to action at 2 p.m. on Sunday on the road at Buffalo

“We have to handle success this weekend,” Borelli said. “We can’t be too high coming off beating Michigan. Buffalo is a good team, we have to travel. We have to show that we can handle success.”