Sunday, June 16, 2024

MSU wrestling falls to Rutgers University 22-13 in nail-biting meet

January 19, 2024
<p>Michigan State No. 19 Layne Malczewski (5-4) faces No. 20 sophomore Brian Soldano (10-4) of Rutgers. Michigan State fell to No. 12 Rutgers 22-13, falling to 0-2 in conference play.</p>

Michigan State No. 19 Layne Malczewski (5-4) faces No. 20 sophomore Brian Soldano (10-4) of Rutgers. Michigan State fell to No. 12 Rutgers 22-13, falling to 0-2 in conference play.

The MSU Wrestling team is now 0-2 in conference play following their 22-13 loss to No. 12 Rutgers University today and their loss at Michigan last Sunday. 

The first action of the night took place in the 125-pound weigh-in when No. 41 redshirt junior Tristan Lujan (13-7) represented the Spartans as he faced No. 22 junior Dean Peterson (7-2) of Rutgers. It took until the second period for either to score with Peterson earning the first points of the bout following an escape. After taking the lead, Peterson buckled down protecting his lead into the third period. In the start of the third period, Lujan tied the score back up following an escape of his own. Lujan went looking for a win nearly securing a takedown in the final 30 seconds ran out of time as the match was sent to sudden death. In sudden death, the pair sized each other up briefly before Lujan shot for a takedown that was reversed by Peterson to secure the sudden death victory.

The 133-pound weigh-in followed with Michigan State's No. 183 redshirt sophomore Andrew Hampton (4-13), who faced Rutger's No. 15 junior Dylan Shawver (15-3). Shawver got to work early and secured a 9-2 lead heading into the second period because of his three takedowns. The second period was much of the same, where Shawver secured his fourth takedown of the bout just 30 seconds into the round. In the third round, Hampton defended relentlessly and tried to prevent Shawver from securing another takedown. But with just under a minute left Shawver secured his fifth, sixth, and seventh takedown of the bout and secured a 19-6 technical fall victory as Rutgers took an early 8-0 lead in the meet.

The 141-pound weight-in followed as No. 31 redshirt senior Jordan Hamdan (14-4) stepped onto the mat for the Spartans, facing Rutger’s No. 12 graduate student Mitch Moore (10-0).

After the meet, head coach Roger Chandler spoke about the plethora of talent and belief he has in Hamdan.

“I’ve been saying this for the last three or four years, that Jordan Hamdan is the best guy in our room," Chandler said. "It’s just starting to show.”

Following a scoreless first period, Moore scored the first points of the game because of an escape with just under 30 seconds left in the period. Hamdan responded promptly with an escape of his own at the start of the third period, followed by an escape and takedown, to take a 4-1 lead with just over a minute left. The final minute of the bout saw Hamdan defend resiliently as he secured a 5-1 decision victory, giving Moore his first loss of the season.

The 149-pound weight-in saw the Spartan's No. 149 redshirt freshman Braden Stauffenberg (5-10), who fought against the Scarlet Knight's No. 45 junior Michael Cetta (9-5). During the first period, Stauffenberg came out of the gates aggressively but couldn’t secure a takedown following the initial burst. Cetta capitalized and secured a double leg takedown shortly after with just under a minute left, which added to a 3-1 lead going into the second period. Throughout the third period, both players were in a back-and-forth affair, but eventually Stauffenberg brought the match to within a point in the final 30 seconds. Finally, Stauffenberg desperately fought for a final point but time ran out as the bout ended a 4-3 decision victory for Cetta.

In the 157-pound weigh-in, No. 21 senior Chase Saldate (15-3) stepped onto the mat for the Spartans to face No. 97 junior Al DeSantis (5-7) for Rutgers. Saldate continued his aggressive approach to bouts and secured a takedown almost instantly in the first minute. In the second period, Saldate got to work early again and secured a takedown just 30 seconds into the period to take an 8-2 lead going into the third. The final period was full of minimal action until the final 10 seconds, where DeSantis secured a takedown as Saldate saw out an 8-5 decision victory, bringing the Spartans within five points of Rutgers heading into the intermission.

The next bout took place in the 165-pound weigh-in as Michigan State's No. 11 senior Caleb Fish (17-4) stepped onto the mat against Rutger's No. 86 junior Anthony White (9-8). The first point of the match wouldn’t be scored until the second period following a Fish escape. Neither of the two would score again until White earned a point when Fish stalled. The stalling call on Fish demanded he got to work, and he did as he secured a near fall with under a minute left to gain a 5-1 decision victory.

In the 174-pound weigh-in, the Spartan's No .79 redshirt senior DJ Shannon (7-9) faced off against No. 18 senior Jackson Turley (6-2). It was yet another scoreless first period as the first points of the bout came following a Turley takedown with just under a minute in the second. Shannon fought back and with just seconds left in the period and secured a reversal to make it a one-point differential heading into the third. In the third and final period, Turley made it a two-point bout following an escape to see out a 4-2 decision victory.

Coach Chandler spoke about the improvements he’s seen from Shannon as he continues to recover from injury.

“You can see he’s a special kid," Chandler said. "It’s just a matter of putting it together after all that time off.”

Michigan State's No. 19 graduate student Layne Malczewski (5-4) stepped up next in the 184-pound weigh-in against the Scarlet Knight's No. 20 sophomore Brian Soldano (10-4). Soldano jumped ahead halfway through the first period securing a takedown that was met virtually instantaneously by a Malczewski reversal. In the second period, Malczewski came out the gates swinging and tagging on four points following two near falls. The final period was Malczewski's period: he secured two takedowns, a reversal, and a four-point near as he cruised to a 19-6 majority decision victory, bringing the Spartans within one point of Rutgers in the meet at 13-14.

The Spartan's No. 46 redshirt freshman Kael Wisler (20-8) took the mat next against No. 13 junior John Poznanski (10-0). Poznanski struck first in the bout and secured a takedown halfway through the first period. Poznanski continued to build on his lead in the second and added two takedowns and an escape to his score as he took a 10-2 lead into the final period. In the third period, Poznanski added four more takedowns to end the match to end the match 22-6.

The final match of the meet ended in the heavyweight division with No. 37 redshirt freshman Josh Terrill (23-7) representing the Spartans as he faced No. 10 graduate student Yaraslau Slavikouski (12-0) of Rutgers. Slavikouski took an early lead after the first period thanks to a takedown. In the second, Terrill secured his second escape of the bout and brought the score within one point. The third period saw Slavikouski score an escape point to see out the 4-2 decision victory.

Following the loss, the Spartans continue their Big Ten conference campaign this Sunday where they will be hosting reigning National Champions No. 1 Penn State. Penn State will be the Spartan's third consecutive ranked opponent, something Coach Chandler welcomes.

“This is why you come to Michigan State and this is why you wrestle in the Big Ten," Chandler said. “We have a great opportunity Sunday to wrestle with the very best and see where we need to improve and go out there and try and prove some stuff to ourselves.”

Starting time for the meet is set for 1 p.m. this Sunday, Jan. 21 with streaming available on Big Ten Plus.

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