CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The No. 2 Ohio State University wrestling team (8-1, 4-1 B1G) won six of 10 bouts to earn a 23-14 road victory at No. 12 Illinois (2-6, 1-5 B1G). The Buckeyes won both battles of nationally-ranked wrestlers pitted against each other at 157 and 184 pounds. Ohio State’s five upperclassmen and redshirt freshman Ethan Smith all had their hand raised at the end of their bouts.
Myles Martin (12-0) and Kollin Moore (12-0) extended their undefeated 2018-19 campaigns while Micah Jordan (17-1) and Luke Pletcher (17-2) both garnered win No. 17 on the season. In addition to Smith’s aforementioned triumph, Ke-Shawn Hayes was also crowned a (sudden) victor over a top-10 foe.
The dual began at 133 pounds where Pletcher notched the bout’s only offensive points, a first-period takedown which proved to be the difference. He added an escape in the third frame and walked off the mat with a 3-2 decision over Dylan Duncan in-hand.
Following an Illinois tech fall at 141 pounds, Jordan matched with five team points of his own in the 149-pound bout. Points were flying off the board early and often as Jordan owned leads of 10-6 and 18-8 after the first and second periods, respectively. The Buckeye redshirt senior continued to pile up the tallies, totaling 11 takedowns before the scuffle was called early because of a 27-12 tech fall.
Next up was the first of two nationally-ranked clashes, this one featuring No. 7 Ke-Shawn Hayes vs. No. 8 Eric Barone. This marked the second meeting between these two adversaries this season with the previous tussle going in favor of Barone, 2-1, at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. Tables were turned in Champaign when action spilled over into sudden victory and Hayes nabbed a buzzer-beating takedown on the edge of the mat to enact some revenge as a 3-1 winner in the second go-around.
Extra time was needed to separate in the subsequent bout as well. Two-time NCAA qualifier Joey Gunther earned the bout-clinching takedown on Kaleb Romero, slicing the Fighting Illini’s deficit in half (from 11-5 to 11-8).
Smith’s win came next and was encored by Martin’s 8-4 decision over No. 4 Emery Parker. Both Buckeyes posted three takedowns en route to the winner’s circle. Half of Martin’s dozen wins have come over top-20 opponents.
Moore continued his pinning parade, sticking Andre Lee early in the second period to clinch the team dual win. Moore has four falls in six duals and his closest B1G bout had a seven-point margin (12-5).
The evening concluded with Gary Traub and Hunter Lucas being called into action. It was an interesting day for Traub to say the least:
HWT | Gary Traub (9-4, r-So.) vs. Deuce Rachal (7-13, r-Sr.)
Traub was in Edinboro, Pa., earlier today when he got the call that Chase Singletary was battling flu-like symptoms.
Hopped in a 🚗 and arrived in Champaign around 3:15 p.m. and is the lineup tonight.
— Ohio State Wrestling (@wrestlingbucks) February 2, 2019
Traub was up to the challenge in his first career conference start, initiating the action throughout. Despite considerably out-shooting and forcing a stalling warning on Deuce Rachal, Traub came out on the wrong end of a tight 3-2 decision. Lucas also battled to the bitter end, pushing 11th-ranked Travis Piotrowski in a 3-1 decision.
BOUT RESULTS | Dual Score Sheet
No. 2 Ohio State 23, No. 12 Illinois 14
133 lbs | No. 6 Luke Pletcher (OSU) def. Dylan Duncan (ILL) | D, 3-2; Team Score: 3-0
141 lbs | No. 4 Mike Carr (ILL) def. Clay Ragon (OSU) | TF, 20-5; TS: 3-5
149 lbs | No. 3 Micah Jordan (OSU) def. Christian Kanzler (ILL) | TF, 27-12; TS: 8-5
157 lbs | No. 7 Ke-Shawn Hayes (OSU) def. No. 8 Eric Barone (ILL) | SV1, 3-1; TS: 11-5
165 lbs | Joey Gunther (ILL) def. Kaleb Romero (OSU) | SV1, 3-1; TS: 11-8
174 lbs | No. 18 Ethan Smith (OSU) def. Carver James (ILL) | D, 7-5; TS: 14-8
184 lbs | No. 1 Myles Martin (OSU) def. No. 4 Emery Parker (ILL) | D, 8-4; TS: 17-8
197 lbs | No. 2 Kollin Moore (OSU) def. Andre Lee (ILL) | PIN, 3:37; TS: 23-8
285 lbs | Deuce Rachal (ILL) def. Gary Traub (OSU) | D, 3-2; TS: 23-11
125 lbs | No. 11 Travis Piotrowski (ILL) def. Hunter Lucas (OSU) | D, 3-1; TS: 23-14