By: Jake Krier, UWEC Sports Information
WILLIAMSPORT, Penn. (blugolds.com) - The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire wrestling team wrestled in day one of their two-day stop at Lycoming College for this season's Budd Whitehill Duals. On Friday afternoon, the Blugolds, who had received the top seed in Bracket D, took on Williams College, the host Lycoming, and York College of Pennsylvania.
In the opener, Eau Claire quickly fell behind 12-0 to Williams through the first two matches. From there, though, it was all Blugolds. They won seven of the remaining eight matchups to go away victorious, 28-15.
Tyler Demo (Fr.-Loves Park, IL/Belvidere North), Carter Focht (Sr.-Pine Springs, MN/Mahtomedi), Chase Schmidt (Fr.-Rice Lake, WI), and Evan Lawrence (Fr.-Hugo, MN/Mahtomedi) all earned decision victories in the win. Earning technical falls were captains Tyler Vogt (Sr.-Owatonna, MN) and Ramsey Bloy (Jr.-Freedom, WI), and Tyler Burt (Fr.-Beloit, WI/Beloit Turner) put an exclamation on the dual with a pinfall to end the match.
Match two on the day saw more success for the Blugolds, as they defeated a tough Lycoming squad, 27-23. As they will do all weekend, Eau Claire forfeited at 125-pounds, but they answered with back-to-back pins from Casey Hedrington (Fr.-Chippewa Falls, WI/Chi-Hi) and Jordan Meyer (So.-Evansville, WI).
Lycoming won three of the next four matches. Schmidt mixed in his second win on the day with what would have been a technical fall due to points, but his opponent stalled out, resulting in six team points for Eau Claire. After a close defeat at 174-pounds, the Blugolds fought back with another decision win from Lawrence and then Bloy winning by injury default. Lycoming earned a pin at heavyweight to cut the final deficit to four.
Friday's finale featured a rematch from last year's semifinals of the Budd Whitehill Duals. Just as they were victorious a year ago, York topped the Blugolds this season as well. Eau Claire only mustered three wins against York en route to the 26-15 loss.
Hedrington and Meyer provided bonus points for the second consecutive match, as the former earned a 19-2 tech. fall after trailing 2-1 to start the second period. The latter kept the momentum rolling with a fifty-second pin. Unfortunately for the Blugolds, that momentum came to a halt all the way until the 197-pound match when Bloy added a 9-1 major decision.
Based on Friday's results, the Blugolds will now compete in the 5-8 Place bracket on Saturday after finishing second in their pool. They face SUNY-Cortland in the opening match at 9:30 a.m. They will then wrestle either Springfield or SUNY-Oswego for fifth or seventh place to conclude the Budd Whitehill Duals before returning to Wisconsin.
Follow the action for all sports this season on Blugold Game Day.