CMU wrestling dominates against Buffalo, wins third-straight dual meet

Central Michigan graduate student Corbyn Munson, left, lifts Buffalo's Kaleb Burgess during a match on Sunday, Feb. 11 in McGuirk Arena. Munson won 5-4. (Marie Underwood | CM-Life)

As graduate student Corbyn Munson held a one point lead over Buffalo’s Kaleb Burgess late in the third period, the referee stopped play as Munson grabbed his knee and winced in pain. 

The injury led to tensions rising in McGuirk Arena as some fans yelled out that the referees should’ve stopped it earlier, and claimed that Burgess was going for his knee intentionally. 

After he was looked at, Munson got up and finished the match where he went on to win, 5-4. The resilient win from Munson helped the Chippewas gain all the momentum to defeat the Bulls 28-5 on Sunday.  

“Buffalo's real physical, and they don't try to score a lot and try to get in your head, push you around and have you make a mistake, it's hard to wrestle people like that,” head coach Tom Borrelli said. “... Our guys did a pretty good job, and it's a tough style to wrestle.”

The gritty win moves CMU to 6-6 overall and 4-1 in conference competition. 

Similar to the previous meet, Sean Spidle got the Chippewas out to a fast start in the 125 match, securing two takedowns in the first period to take the early 6-1 lead. Spidle went on to win his match by major decision, 13-3 to give CMU the 4-0 lead early. 

“In dual meets momentum is huge, so it's always good to have a really good 125 pounder and a good heavyweight,” Borrelli said.

Spidle has now won three-straight conference matches and moves to 4-1 in MAC competition.  

After redshirt senior Vince Perez fell to Buffalo’s Tomy Maddox, sophomore Jimmy Nugent looked to get the momentum back to the Chippewas. With Nugent up by one late in the third period, he came up with the takedown to move his lead to 6-2 and win the match, putting CMU ahead 7-2. 

Coming into the match ranked No. 8 nationally and riding a seven match win streak, graduate student Corbyn Munson continued his impressive season performance with a 5-4 decision victory to give the Chippewas the 10-3 lead. 

With the momentum with CMU, redshirt senior Johnny Lovett stepped up to the mat for the 157 match. In the first period, both wrestlers got chippy with each other as Lovett got his first point after sophomore Nick Stampoulos threw a punch at Lovett. The Bulls also lost a point to their team score due to unsportsmanlike conduct during the altercation. 

As emotions ran high, Lovett came up with the late takedown in the third period to seal the 5-0 decision victory, extending the CMU’s lead to 11. 

Redshirt sophomore Tyler Swiderski won convincingly in the 165 match, securing the 14-4 major decision victory. 

“I really feel like (Swiderski) is probably one of the best pure wrestlers in our program,” Borrelli said. “He just needs to keep building his confidence more than anything else and something like today will help.”

With the 174 match tied at one and headed to overtime, redshirt senior Alex Cramer got out of an early shot from Buffalo’s Jay Nivision to keep it tied. 

After a scoreless first overtime, Cramer secured a point from an escape to take the 2-1 lead in the first tiebreaker. In the second tiebreaker, Nivison also got a point from an escape. However, because Cramer had the three-second advantage in riding time, he took his second-straight overtime match.  

The match extends Cramer’s win streak to seven as he keeps a perfect record in MAC competition. 

In the 184 match, redshirt sophomore Adrien Cramer won the Chippewas’ sixth-straight match in the meet in a 4-1 decision victory. 

Redshirt sophomore Bryan Caves won his third-straight match to end the dual meet as he won in the 285 weight class by tech fall victory, 16-1. This is the second week Caves has dominated on the mat as last week he came up with the pin to close out the meet.

"It comes down to having faith in the coaches,” Caves said. “... If they told me to jump through a building, I’d jump through the building, jump off a bridge, I’d do it. You really trust those guys (and) really got to believe in what they're telling you.”

The Chippewas currently rank second in the Mid-American Conference West just behind Northern Illinois. CMU will have to win out if it wants a chance to share the MAC West regular season title with the Huskies. 

After two matches at home, the Chippewas will travel to Kent, Ohio to take on Kent State on Friday at 7 p.m.