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Jan. 12, 2005

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Following a perfect 4-0 showing as host of the 2005 Buckeye Duals last Saturday, the Ohio State wrestling team (5-3, 0-0 Big Ten) looks to keep its win streak alive on a road trip to No. 25 Pittsburgh at 7:30 p.m. Friday and at 11th-ranked Cornell at 2 p.m. Sunday.

ROAD TRIP TO FEATURE NEW ARENAS
On the weekend road swing, Ohio State will have the opportunity to wrestle in a pair of new venues at both Pittsburgh and Cornell.

Friday, the Buckeyes and Panthers will face off at the Peterson Events Center, an arena opened in 2002 that also houses the men’s and women’s basketball games.

Sunday, Ohio State will have its second opportunity in the last three seasons to wrestle in Cornell’s Friedman Wrestling Center, which also opened in 2002. The Buckeyes pulled out a 22-15 win in their last trip to Ithaca Jan. 26, 2003.

LAST WEEK: OHIO STATE SWEEPS FOUR MATCHES AT BUCKEYE DUALS
Ohio State capped a perfect record for the 2005 version of the Buckeye Duals Saturday with its 33-3 victory over Cleveland State in the finale. The Buckeyes claimed 21-10 and 18-17 wins over Drexel and Bloomsburg in the opening two matches before defeating Kent State, 23-16, in the third bout Saturday.

Sophomore J.D. Bergman and freshman T.J. Enright paced the Buckeyes with wins each of their matches. Bergman closed the day with a pair of decision wins, a major decision and a fall. The wins included matches against Chad Hoare of Bloomsburg and Joe Phillips of Cleveland State, both nationally-ranked wrestlers.

Enright chipped in with two decisions and a fall along with a win by forfeit against Kent State.

Fellow freshman Kirk Nail also won three matches at HWT as did rookie Jason Johnstone at 141. Nail’s only loss was a tight, 3-1 decision to Tomas Rodriguez of Kent State. Rodriguez is a Top 20 wrestler at HWT.

At 125, junior Nathan Costello also was a three-time winner, having his hand raised against Drexel, Kent State and Cleveland State. The match against Kent State was a win by forfeit.

2005 BUCKEYE DUALS FEATURED TOP INDIVIDUAL AND TEAM COMPETITION
St. John Arena welcomed a top-flight collection of teams and individual wrestlers Saturday for the Buckeye Duals. Not only did three Top 25 teams highlight the event, but six weight classes featured at least three ranked wrestlers. Overall, 28 ranked wrestlers stepped on the mats Saturday.

The 2005 Buckeye Duals field was made up of 14 teams, the largest in its history. In addition to the host Buckeyes, who tied for third at the 2004 NCAA Championships, No. 3-ranked Illinois, No. 22 Northwestern and No. 24 Northern Illinois all wrestled Saturday. The Illini, fresh off a team title at the Midlands championships, completed their day at 3-0, as did the Wildcats. The Huskies joined the Buckeyes with a perfect 4-0 mark.

IU/UVA TRI-MEET AND IOWA DUAL TO AIR LIVE VIA STREAMING VIDEO AT OHIOSTATEBUCKEYE.COM
Three Ohio State duals will be broadcast live via streaming video at www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com this season.

The Jan. 30 tri-meet with Indiana and Virginia is scheduled for broadcast. Also set to air is the Iowa dual Feb. 5.

For more information, please visit www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com in the coming weeks.

OSU ASSISTANT ROWLANDS TO WRESTLE IN EUROPE FOR TEAM USA
Tommy Rowlands, a volunteer assistant for Ohio State this season after completing a decorated career as a Buckeye, will wrestle in Europe for Team USA this winter.

The U.S. men’s freestyle team will wrestle at two winter tour events in 2005, with the possibility of a third event being added. The first winter tour event will be the Ivan Yarygin Memorial International held in Krasnoyarsk, Russia, Jan. 30.

Rowlands earned his spot on the U.S. squad with a fourth-place finish at 211 pounds at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials last May in Indianapolis.

OSU ASSISTANT Mitch Clark WRESTLES AT MIDLANDS
After a one-year break from competition at Midlands, Mitch Clark, an Ohio State assistant coach and former national champ for the Buckeyes in 1998, competed at 197 pounds.

Clark joined Ohio State’s J.D. Bergman as a quarterfinalist with a 9-5 decision in round two and a pin in the third round before falling to No. 5 Scott Barker of Oregon, 9-5, to drop into the consolations. On Thursday, Clark was eliminated with a loss in the consolations via disqualification.

Clark won Midlands in 1998, the same season he won the NCAA championship at 197 pounds.

BERGMAN, ENRIGHT RANKED NATIONALLY
With their quick starts to the 2004-05 season, J.D. Bergman and T.J. Enright have found themselves in the national rankings in their respective weight classes. Bergman, who began at No. 3 in preseason polls at 197, is ranked No. 4 by W.I.N. Magazine and NWCA/USA TODAY. Enright, unranked at the onset of the season, is 17th in the W.I.N. rankings and 14th in NWCA.

In the Amateur Wrestling News, Bergman again is fourth, while Enright sits at 18th for Jan. 11.

YOUTHFUL BUCKEYES LEADING WAY
In the eight dual matches this season, the Buckeyes have featured a lineup with as many as seven freshman, two sophomores and three juniors. Additionally, two of the three juniors are wrestling in their first seasons as Buckeyes.

For the year, Ohio State has accumulated 319 team points in four tournaments and eight dual bouts. Of those 319 points, 154 have come from either a redshirt or true freshman, including 57.5 by T.J. Enright, which ranks second on the team.

In the four matches of the Buckeye Duals, OSU freshman accounted for 44 of the team’s 95 points on the day.

When including 149 Steve Wolery, a junior walk-on, and 174 Nathaniel Augustson, a junior transfer from Embry-Riddle, newcomers have accounted for 167 of the 319 points in 2004. Augustson and Wolery scored 13 points Saturday, upping the newcomer total to 57 of 95 points scored by Ohio State in the Buckeye Duals.

BERGMAN TOPS BUCKEYES IN MAJORITY OF STAT COLUMNS
Sophomore J.D. Bergman not only serves as a team-leader after his third-place finish at the 2004 NCAA Tournament, but also heads the Buckeyes in nearly every statistical category in 2005.

Bergman leads Ohio State in wins (24), takedowns (48), 2 and 3-point nearfalls (10 and 20), match points (224) and team points (79.0). He also is No. 1 in the Buckeyes’ major decision (7), tech fall (2) and fall (5) categories.

With his five falls, Bergman has 17 for his career, which ties for No. 17 all-time at Ohio State.

SCOUTING THE PANTHERS
Pittsburgh, which cracked the USA Today/ NWCA poll last week at No. 25 in the nation, comes into the match with Ohio State with a 1-3 overall record. The three losses have been to impressive competition in No. 3 Iowa State, No. 6 Lehigh and No. 16 Penn State.

Highlighting the dual for the Panthers are No. 5 Ronald Tarquinio at 141 pounds and No. 16 Matt Kocher at 149 pounds. Tarquinio is 14-3 this season with all three losses coming against wrestlers ranked above him. Kocher is 20-4 thus far and 4-0 in dual meets.

Randy Stottlemyre is serving his 25th season as Pittsburgh’s head coach. In his time with the Panthers, Stottlemyre has pocketed more than 200 dual wins and capped last season with a Top 20 finish at the NCAA championships.

OSU-PITT ALL-TIME SERIES
Ohio State and Pittsburgh have split 16 all-time meetings. The Buckeyes claimed the last match against the Panthers in 2001 by a 26-11 count in Pittsburgh. Ohio State’s 2001 victory snapped the Panther’s three-match win streak over the Buckeyes.

The teams first wrestled one another in 1950.

LAST TIME VS. PITT
On Jan. 12, 2001, No. 16 Ohio State visited No. 22 Pittsburgh and emerged with a 26-11 victory.

Pittsburgh gained its only lead after the first two bouts at 4-3, but Nick Preston and Tommy Rowlands gave OSU the advantage with wins at 197 and HWT. The Buckeyes closed the match by sweeping 141 through 165 behind major decisions by Robert Sessley and John Clark, while Keaton Anderson pitched in a technical fall at 157.

WRAP ON THE BIG RED
The Big Red comes into the match Sunday against Ohio State ranked No. 11 in the USA Today/ NWCA Poll. Cornell has started the 2004-05 season with a 2-1 record after taking two of three at the Lone Star Duals last weekend in Grand Prairie, Texas. The Big Red scored wins over Purdue and Central Oklahoma before dropping a 23-12 decision to No. 10 Oklahoma.

Cornell is led by senior Travis Lee at 133 and junior Dustin Manotti at 149. Lee, the 2003 national champion at 125, won the 133-pound weight class at the Las Vegas Invite this season. Manotti is a two-time All-American and also a 2004 Las Vegas Invite winner.

Rob Koll is in his 12th season as Big Red head coach. In that time, he has amassed a 134-50-4 dual record and helped Cornell place 10th and 11th in the last two NCAA championships. Koll was a national champion in 1988 at 158 pounds at his alma mater North Carolina.

BUCKEYES – BIG RED SERIES INFO
Ohio State owns a slight 4-3-1 edge in the all-time series. Cornell closed within one dual of tying the series with a 21-20 win last season at the 2004 National Duals in Cleveland, Ohio.

In 2002-03, Ohio State claimed a pair of matches from the Big Red in less than a week. At the 2003 National Duals, Ohio State emerged with a 28-12 win before posting a 22-15 decision in Itaca seven days later.

The teams first met in 1929.

LAST MEETING: OHIO STATE – CORNELL
Ohio State found itself at a disadvantage through the first five matches as Cornell scored wins in the 125 through 157 classes.

Following a major decision loss at 157 to up Cornell’s advantage to 18-0, John Clark scored win No. 2 on the day with a 9-7 decision over No. 18-ranked Joe Mazzurco to put OSU on the board at 18-3. Ohio State went on to record wins in three of the final four matches as Blake Kaplan, J.D. Bergman and Tommy Rowlands brought the Buckeyes to within one point of knotting the final score.

BERGMAN CLAIMS CAREER WIN NO. 50 AT MIDLANDS
With his 14-2 major decision win over Jason Buuck of Indiana in the second round last Wednesday at Midlands, sophomore J.D. Bergman recorded win No. 50 of his career.

With 50 victories midway through his sophomore season, Bergman is on pace to continue the recent trend of Ohio State wrestlers to reach 100 wins for their career. His career record stands at 57-19 heading into the Pittsburgh match.

In the last two seasons, four Buckeyes have claimed career win No. 100. In 2003, Keaton Anderson and Tommy Rowlands reached the feat, while the 2004 season saw John Clark and Jeff Ratliff each hit the century mark.

BERGMAN WINS AT 2004 NWCA ALL-STAR CLASSIC
J.D. Bergman competed in the 2004 National Wrestling Coaches Association All-Star Classic in Edwardsville, Ill. Monday, Nov. 22. The returning All-American defeated Scott Barker of Oregon via an 8-3 decision in the 197-pound bout.

Early in the match, Bergman trailed Barker, 2-1, after the Duck scored his second escape. Later, Bergman jumped ahead with a takedown on a lateral throw and then took advantage of a missed shot by Barker and scored another takedown to extend his lead to 8-3. After a scoreless third period, Bergman claimed the win via decision.

Bergman is the ninth Buckeye to wrestle in the All-Star event. In the last four seasons, Tommy Rowlands wrestled in the event three times, sitting out once with an injury, while John Clark and Keaton Anderson competed in the 2003 event.

ENRIGHT RECORDS BUCKEYE FIRST
T.J. Enright’s consecutive tournament titles at 133 pounds to open the season account for an Ohio State first. With tournament crowns at the Oklahoma Gold Classic Nov. 13 and Michigan State Open Nov. 21, the Galloway, Ohio native has become the first freshman to win his initial two tournaments in the Russ Hellickson era, which dates back to 1986.

ENRIGHT NAMED BIG TEN WRESTLER OF THE WEEK FOR NOV. 23
T.J. Enright gained his second tournament title in the opening two weeks of the 2004 wrestling season, winning the 133-pound class at the 2004 Michigan State Open in East Lansing, Mich. With the tourney crown, Enright was named Big Ten wrestler of the week for Nov. 23.

Enright was named outstanding wrestler for the 2004 MSU Open after recording falls in three of his four victories en route to the championship. In the event final vs. Kyle Stoffer of Central Michigan, Enright recorded pin No. 3 at the 4:27 mark of the match to seal the 133 crown.

Enright, the No. 5 seed, upended top-seed and 2004 NWCA All-Star Sam Hiatt of Northern Illinois in the semifinal, 3-1.

HELLICKSON COVERS 2004 OLYMPIC WRESTLING FOR NBC
Ohio State wrestling head coach Russ Hellickson served as play-by-play announcer for NBC’s coverage of the 2004 Olympic Games Aug. 13-29 in Athens, Greece. Hellickson, who was a part of his sixth Olympic broadcast team, teamed with Jeff Blatnick for both Greco and Freestyle wrestling.

Hellickson previously covered wrestling at the 1984, ’88, ’92, ’96 and 2000 Olympic games in the role of analyst at the 1984 Los Angeles games and as play-by-play from 1988 in Seoul, Korea through 2000 in Sydney, Australia. As a wrestler, he was an Olympic silver medallist at the 1976 games in Montreal and a member of the 1980 U.S. team that boycotted Olympics in Moscow.

UP NEXT
Ohio State remains on the road in its Big Ten opener Sunday, Jan. 23 at Michigan State. The Buckeyes and Spartans are set for a 1 p.m. start.