Comeback Falls Short as #19 Wrestling Falls at #2 Minnesota, 23-19

Jan. 3, 2006

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - For the third dual in a row, the No. 19 Arizona State University wrestling team faced a team ranked highly in the national polls when it traveled to Minneapolis, Minn., for a dual with No. 2 Minnesota Tuesday night. Unfortunately for the Sun Devils, the host Golden Gophers pulled out a victory in the final bout to thwart an ASU comeback for the 23-19 decision.

Trailing 20-10, the Sun Devils won three bouts in a row, including unranked Alex Pavlenko (Fr., Tempe, Ariz.) upsetting No. 10 Gabreil Dretsch at 174 pounds and unranked C.B. Dollaway (Sr., Mt. Gilead, Ohio) defeating No. 6 Roger Kish at 184, but it was not enough as ASU fell to 3-3 overall on the season while UM remained perfect at 8-0. Despite the team loss, history was made individually as Ryan Bader (Sr., Reno, Nev.) won the 100th bout in his collegiate career.

The dual opened with No. 8 Jeremy Mendoza (Sr., Temecula, Calif.) improving to 18-1 on the season as he captured an 8-0 major decision over Andrew Domingues at 125 pounds to put the visitors ahead, 4-0. UM stormed back with wins in the next three bouts to take a 14-4 lead. At 133 pounds, No. 4 Mack Reiter pinned Adam Hickey (So., Mayfield, Ohio) at 3:25 before Manuel Rivera picked up a 7-3 decision over Jason Robbins (Fr., Orlando, Fla.) at 141. The final of the three victories came at 149 where No. 5 Dustin Schlatter recorded a 15-0 technical fall over Brandon Schad.

Brian Stith (Jr., Hampton, Va.), the ninth-ranked wrestler at 157 pounds, halted the Golden Gopher win streak as he needed just 1:11 to pin his opponent, Danny Williams to bring the score to 14-10. UM immediately regained the six points lost as ASU did not send a wrestler to the mat at 165 pounds, allowing No. 8 Matt Nagel to win by forfeit and bring the score to 20-10.

Needing a victory to remain in contention for the team victory, Pavlenko stepped in and recorded the biggest win of his young collegiate career as he upset No. 10 Dretsch, 9-5, to cut the deficit to seven points. Dollaway then made his season debut at 184 pounds and recorded a 3-0 decision over No. 6 Kish to bring the Sun Devils to with in four points, 20-16.

Bader then took the mat and brought the Sun Devils to with in one point at 20-19 as he secured the 100th victory of his career with a 6-1 decision over Mitch Kuhlman at 197 pounds. Bader is the 21st ASU wrestler to break the 100-win plateau and the first to do so since current assistant coach Eric Larkin did so in 2003.

Needing a victory to earn a win for the team, No. 4 Cain Velasquez (Sr., Yuma, Ariz.) met up with No. 2 Cole Konrad in the heavyweight bout and the night's marquee match-up. Just as the 1,534 fans had hoped, the two big men did not disappoint as Konrad took a 2-0 lead into the third period of action before Velasquez scored a takedown to tie the bout at two. Konrad would then escape and hold on to the win 3-2 for the 23-19 team victory.

The Sun Devils now return home for a pair of duals Sunday (Jan. 8) inside Wells Fargo Arena. UC Davis and No. 7 Iowa State open the Sun Devil duals at 11:00 a.m. before ASU and UCD square off in a Pac-10 dual starting at 12:30 p.m. The day concludes with a 2:00 p.m. dual between ASU and ISU as the Sun Devils face former head coach Bobby Douglas and his Cyclones.

#2 Minnesota defeats #19 Arizona State, 23-19
Dual started at 125 pounds
125 - #8 Jeremy Mendoza (AS) majors Andrew Domingues (MN), 8-0
133 - #4 Mack Reiter (MN) pins Adam Hickey (AS), 3:25
141 - Manuel Rivera (MN) decisions Jason Robbins (AS), 7-3
149 - #5 Dustin Schlatter (MN) tech falls Brandon Schad (AS), 15-0
157 - #9 Brian Stith (AS) pins Danny Williams (MN), 1:11
165 - #8 Matt Nagel (MN) wins by forfeit
174 - Alex Pavlenko (AS) decisions #10 Gabriel Dretsch (MN), 9-5
184 - C.B. Dollaway (AS) decisions #6 Roger Kish (MN), 3-0
197 - #8 Ryan Bader (AS) decisions Mitch Kuhlman (MN), 6-1
285 - #2 Cole Konrad (MN) decisions #4 Cain Velasquez (AS), 3-2

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