No. 20 Sun Devil Wrestling Falls Short at Home to No. 3 Iowa, 24-17

Nov. 30, 2003

TEMPE, Ariz. - In its first dual of the year, as well as its first home action of the 2003-04 campaign, the No. 20 Arizona State wrestling team (0-1, 0-0 Pac-10) fell behind early and could not overcome No. 3 Iowa, dropping a 24-17 decision to the Hawkeyes Sunday inside Wells Fargo Arena. Following a 15-0 advantage for the visitors after three matches, the crowd of 1,088 saw the Sun Devils try to climb back into the dual but it was too late as Iowa used three falls to move to 3-0 on the season. ASU is now 1-19-1 all-time against Iowa.

The dual opened at 133 with the Hawkeyes taking a 6-0 lead when Todd Meneely pinned Curtis Ray (Fr., Mesa, Ariz.) at 5:38. No. 5 Cliff Moore followed with the visitors' second fall as he downed the Sun Devils' Jeremy Mendoza (So., Temecula, Calif.) at 141. No. 6 Ty Eustice upped the lead to 15-0 with his 2-1 decision over No. 17 Patrick Williams (Jr., Homestead, Fla.) at 149.

The Sun Devils broke into the scoring column following the 157 bout as No. 12 Brian Stith (Fr., Hampton, Va.) upset No. 8 Joe Johnston, 9-7, in overtime. Trailing 6-5, Johnston hit a takedown with 17 seconds remaining to go up 7-6, followed by Stith escaping with two seconds remaining to force the match into overtime. In the one minute sudden victory period, both wrestlers fought for control with Stith grabbing a takedown on the edge of the mat with 25 seconds remaining to win the match.

The Hawkeyes won the next two duals with Cole Pape defeating James Terry (So., Tucson, Ariz.), 10-5, at 165 and Ron Renzi (Sr., Burke, Va.) falling to No. 5 Tyler Nixt at 4:15 to push Iowa's advantage to 24-3. Renzi nearly handed Nixt his first loss of the season when he took Nixt down at the start of the match and put him on his back. Renzi was unable to get the pin and Nixt went on the offensive before pinning the Sun Devil in the second stanza.

No. 17 Nick Frost (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.) started the winning streak for ASU as he upset No. 6 Paul Bradley, 4-1, at 184. Frost held the Hawkeye to the mat for the entire second period following a 2-1 lead and kept his opponent there for most of the match on his way to the win. No. 8 Ryan Bader (So., Verdi, Nev.) stayed perfect on the year as he handed No. 7 Ryan Fulsaas a 6-1 decision at 197. After a scoreless first period, Bader escaped and was taken down to trail 2-1 heading into the final stanza. With Fulsaas taking the down position to start the third, Bader rode him the entire period, and picked up three near fall points with 20 seconds remaing to take the win.

No. 14 Cain Velasquez (So., Yuma, Ariz.), after no scoring in the first period, rode Hawkeye Ryan Fuller for most of the second period, forcing the heavyweight into two stalling calls to earn a 1-0 lead. Fuller's escape tied the match at one heading into the third period. Velasquez won his home debut with a takedown, another point on stalling and riding time for the 6-1 decision. The final match of the day saw Christian Staylor (Fr., Chesapeake, Va.) also win his home debut as he needed just 4:12 to score 16 points on his way to a 16-0 technical fall over Matt Morkel.

ASU will compete again Dec. 5-6 at the Cliff Keen/Las Vegas Invitational. ASU does not return to home action until Jan. 4 when it plays host to the Sun Devil Duals featuring a 10 a.m. dual with Stanford, a noon dual with Embry-Riddle and a 4 p.m. meeting with No. 6 Iowa State.

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