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The Appalachian

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App State wrestling wins doubleheader over Bulldogs, Pride

Redshirt+freshman+Anthony+Conetta+works+in+an+underhook+against+Greensboro+Colleges+Ethan+Kring+Jan.+21.
Sam Fleming
Redshirt freshman Anthony Conetta works in an underhook against Greensboro College’s Ethan Kring Jan. 21.

App State wrestling opened its SoCon schedule with a sweep over The Citadel, followed by a dominating win over Greensboro College in Varsity Gym Sunday afternoon.

To start the day, the Mountaineers took nine out of 10 matches against the Bulldogs, who came into Boone with a 8-2 record.

“I thought after 165 we wrestled pretty well, consistent,” said head coach JohnMark Bentley. “I thought maybe the first five matches we came out a little flat, we didn’t come out and impose our will on them and we found ourselves in a couple dogfights. We had to wrestle hard to win and some days are like that.”

Junior 125-pound Chad Bellis won his first non-forfeit victory in the opening match 12-2 in a major decision. Following Bellis’ win, 133-pound redshirt sophomore Ethan Oakley recorded a takedown with 53 seconds remaining in a 4-1 decision over The Citadel’s George Rosas. 

“I knew that they wanted to make it tough and keep it close,” Bellis said. “I just focused on trying to score.”

After a Bulldog win at 141 pounds, 149-pound redshirt senior Cody Bond used an escape in the first tiebreaker overtime period to go up 2-1 in a decision over Jeff Boyd. The match went into the tiebreaker overtime after the score remained 1-1 following the sudden victory overtime. Bond controlled the final seconds, giving him the win.

Junior Tommy Askey came back from a 6-0 hole in the 157-pound match, winning 12–9 on a sudden death takedown. After tying the score at eight, Askey conceded an escape and with 19 seconds left, the score was tied once more at nine after his opponent, Hayden Watson, was called for his second stall call. 35 seconds later in overtime, Askey claimed victory.

Against Greensboro, six App State wrestlers earned their first dual wins of their careers.

Freshman heavyweight James Bankston works for a pin against Greensboro College’s Dominic Harris Sunday afternoon. (Sam Fleming)

Redshirt freshmen Anthony Conetta and Drake Acklin both won by fall at 157-pounds and 165-pounds respectively. Freshman Gunnar Pool won via major decision at 197-pounds while freshman James Bankston won by fall at heavyweight. Freshman 125-pound Noah Luna and 149-pound redshirt freshman Kai O’Dell both won by forfeit.

Oakley and 184-pound freshman Tomas Brooker both had pins over the Pride. In his second career start, redshirt sophomore Oren Bost won by tech fall in the 165-pound match.

“At the end of the day I’m excited for not only me, but for the rest of this team,” Bond said. “We’re on the right path right now. Everyone has bought into the culture, so I’m super excited for whenever the next duel is.”

The Black and Gold return to the mat at 10 a.m. Saturday for the Appalachian Open in Varsity Gym. Matches will be held all-day. 

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About the Contributors
Ethan Smith, Sports Editor
Ethan Smith (he/him) is a senior journalism major, media studies minor. This is his third year writing for The Appalachian.
Sam Fleming, Photographer
Sam Fleming (he/him) is a freshman Computer Science Major, from Greensboro, NC. This is his first year with The Appalachian.
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