The men’s wrestling team opened its season on Nov. 17 at the Navy Classic in Annapolis, Md. The team faced stiff competition including Ohio, The Citadel, Cleveland State, West Virginia and Navy. The Bison finished the meet in sixth place out of the nine teams present with 45.5 points behind a strong performance from Paul Petrov ’16. Kent State won the event with a total of 115.5 points.
Petrov stepped up in his first collegiate meet and was one of the top performers for the Bison. He advanced to the championship bout in the 133-pound weight class after receiving a first-round bye and winning two bouts by decision. In the finals, Petrov was defeated in an 8-5 decision to top-seeded Colton Rasche of Navy.
“Petrov had a great tournament. He wrestled aggressively and is adjusting well to the college style,” head coach Dan Wirnsberger said.
Corey Lear ’13, ranked 17th nationally in the 165-pound weight class, was also a high performer for the Bison. He won two matches on a pair of decisions to advance to the meet’s semifinals. In the semifinals, Lear was pinned by Jacob Schalles of Navy, which pushed him into the consolation bracket. However, he then dominated his next two matches with a total score of 24-2 on his way to a third-place finish, giving Lear a second top three-finish in his career at the Navy Classic. Although this was not quite the result Lear was looking for, he still impressed Wirnsberger with his ability to retain his focus and return strong following the tough loss.
“In college wrestling, it is important to be able to put both wins and losses behind you and focus on the task at hand,” Wirnsberger said.
Tyler Lyster ’15 also earned a third-place finish. Lyster was unseeded going into the meet, yet pinned his first two opponents on his way to the semifinals. In the semifinals of the 197-pound weight class, Lyster faced the eventual champion Dustin Kilgore of Kent State. After putting up a tough fight, Lyster was pinned and moved into the consolation bracket. Lyster went on to defeat his next two opponents by a combined score of 16-2.
“Tyler [Lyster] put in a full training cycle in the offseason and it has paid off. He went into the tournament unseeded and really deserved his third-place finish,” Wirnsberger said.
The next match for the Bison will be on Dec. 1 at the Hoosier Duals.