COLUMBUS, Ohio – Nearly 24 hours after the Ohio State wrestling team matched-up against No. 19 Illinois in Champaign Friday night, the Buckeyes quickly returned to action vs. No. 4 Minnesota Saturday evening in St. John Arena.
Knowing a match vs. the Gophers is never an easy feat, the Scarlet and Gray did not let a five-and-a-half hour drive back to Columbus in the middle of the morning detract from the task at hand. An early pin by Peter Capone at 197 pounds appeared to give the Buckeyes (2-9; 1-5 Big Ten) the early momentum needed to take on a Minnesota team that entered the match undefeated in the Big Ten (5-0; 14-3 overall).
Despite Capone garnering his 16th win of the season, Ohio State did not score additional team points until the 165-pound match – a 5-2 win by senior Colt Sponseller – to lose 31-9.
The 184-pound bout between Ohio State’s C.J. Magrum and No. 8 Kevin Steinhaus opened competition. Both wrestlers were tied at 2-2 entering the third period and an escape by Steinhaus within three seconds lifted him to a 3-2 lead. Preventing attacking attempts by Magrum, Steinhaus accumulated 2:14 worth of riding time for the 4-2 win.
Although down 3-0, the 2:30 pin by Capone over Joe Nord propelled the Buckeyes to a 6-3 lead. However, the momentum was short-lived as eighth-ranked Tony Nelson pinned Zach Stolarsky in 1:19.
Moving on to the lighter weight classes, Jacob Vaughan received the starting nod at 133 pounds and although the 19-11 score may not reflect it, Vaughan tested David Thorn throughout the match, especially in the opening period. One minute and six seconds into the bout, Vaughan scored a takedown and 2-point nearfall for a four-point lead and began the second period with a 5-4 advantage.
At 157 pounds, Sean Nemec nearly rallied from an 8-3 deficit in the third period, but fell short 11-8. An early escape by Matt Mincey increased the Gopher’s lead to 9-3, but in a span of 10 seconds, Nemec scored a takedown and 3-point nearfall to pull to within one (9-8). However, Mincey recorded an escape and accrued 2:07 of riding time to hold on for the win.
Sponseller followed with his 5-2 victory vs. No. 11 Cody Yohn. Knotted up at 2 with Yohn entering the third period, Sponseller tallied a takedown at the 1:05 mark and coupled with a riding time of 3:23 earned his 17th win of the season.
A heartbreaking 4-2 loss for Nick Heflin at 174 pounds wrapped up the evening. Back-to-back stalling calls on Heflin evened the score at 2-all for both wrestlers in the third period and the Gopher’s Scott Glasser, ranked 13th in the nation, scored a takedown six seconds later to take the win.
The Buckeyes will travel to Madison, Wis., where they will wrestle the No. 3 Badgers at 2 p.m. ET Feb. 13. Ohio State then will conclude the 2010-11 regular season when it hosts No. 18 Northwestern at noon Feb. 19.
Ohio State 9, No. 4 Minnesota 31
Feb. 5, 2011
St. John Arena
125 Zachary Sanders (Minnesota) MD Bo Touris (Ohio State),18 – 4
133 David Thorn (Minnesota) MD Jacob Vaughan (Ohio State), 19 – 11
141 Michael Thorn (Minnesota) TF5 Randy Languis (Ohio State), 16 – 0 (1:33)
149 Daniel Zilverberg (Minnesota) DEC Mike Fee (Ohio State), 7 – 1
157 Matt Mincey (Minnesota) DEC Sean Nemec (Ohio State), 11 – 8
165 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) DEC Cody Yohn (Minnesota), 5 – 2
174 Scott Glasser (Minnesota) DEC Nick Heflin (Ohio State), 4 – 2
184 Kevin Steinhaus (Minnesota) DEC C.J. Magrum (Ohio State), 4 – 2
197 Peter Capone (Ohio State) FALL Joe Nord (Minnesota), (2:30)
285 Anthony Nelson (Minnesota) FALL Zach Stolarsky (Ohio State), 1:19