CMU wrestlers beat Kent State, sweep second-consecutive weekend

Taylor senior Logan Parks goes vertical with a takedown in his match Friday, Feb. 7, 2020 in McGuirk Arena.

Central Michigan closed out its Mid-American Conference slate with consecutive weekend sweeps. 

After taking down Ohio and Cleveland State on the road on Jan. 31 and Feb. 2, respectively, the Chippewas returned to McGuirk Arena and defeated Buffalo on Friday, 18-15. 

On Sunday, CMU turned around and defeated Kent State, 27-12, and pull into a tie for second in the MAC West standings with Northern Illinois. 

Sunday's victory also extended the Chippewas' (6-4, 6-2 MAC) winning streak to five matches.

“I think today, we wrestled a lot better than we previously have," said junior Dresden Simon. "I feel like all our guys went out there and competed really well, just wrestled tough kind of gritty, everyone seemed like they wanted to win real bad."

Against Kent State, the teams drew for weight classes and the Golden Flashes had the first pick to open the dual. 

When a draw is utilized, the dual starts at the selected weight and follows the order until it reaches the highest weight class. Then, it reverts to the lightest class. 

“That’s only the second time we’ve drawn for weight classes and both times they started at 165 or 174 so I think that challenged our upper weights," coach Tom Borrelli said. "Obviously the coaches are saying that they don’t think we’re good in the upper-weight so that’s where they want us to start to get some momentum." 

Kent State elected to begin the match with the 174-pound weight class, which pitted sophomore Jake Lowell against No. 19 Andrew McNally. 

Lowell kept the match tied at 4-4 through the first period but McNally was able to pull away to a 12-6 victory. 

In the 184, redshirt freshman Ben Cushman put CMU on the board after battling Shane Mast and scoring a pivotal riding-time point in a 4-3 victory. 

Cushman and Tracy Hubbard, who wrestles in the 165-pound weight class, were both able to pick up wins and Borrelli said he was happy with their progress this season.

“I think we’re improving we got some redshirt freshmen in our lineup," Borrelli said. "Ben did a real good job sprawling this match and that's something we really been working on."

Junior Landon Pelham and Colin McCracken had faced off once before, in the Appalachian State Invitational, and Pelham took the victory. 

After a scoreless first period, Pelham took a one-point lead into the third period and closed out a 3-1 victory. 

The Chippewas started to build their momentum in the heavyweight match as Matt Stencel pinned Spencer Berthold in 39 seconds.

Junior Drew Hildebrandt scored a 9-3 victory over Thomas Gutierrez in the 125-pound weight class.

Sophomore Drew Marten squared off against No. 19 Tim Rooney in the 133-pound weight class. After the first period, the two were tied a three and were tied at five after two periods. Rooney was able to pull away with an 11-6 victory over Marten. 

 Following Friday's match against Buffalo's Marcus Robinson, an 8-7 victory for Simon, he said he wanted to have a stronger performance. 

Simon earned a pin over Ian Senz at 4:36 to extend CMU's lead and all but clinched the dual for the Chippewas. 

“After Friday’s dual I was kind of disappointed in the way I wrestled," Simon said. "I usually like to score a lot of points so I went out there with a mindset to score as many points as I could."

Redshirt freshman Corbyn Munson worked a 2-2 tie heading into the third period. In the third, he pulled away to an 8-3 decision.

“Corbyn did a real good job just continue to wrestle you know he was down, and he took the kid down and put him on his back,” Borrelli said.

Senior Logan Parks defeated Brady Chrisman by an 8-2 decision in the 157-pound weight class. Kent State's Kade Byland pinned sophomore Blake Montrie at 2:36 to finish the dual. 

CMU caps its dual season when it hosts Michigan State at 7 p.m. Feb. 21 in McGuirk Arena. After the dual against the Spartans, the Chippewas turn their attention to the MAC Championships.