The Northern Illinois University wrestling team extended its winning streak to six Saturday with a 3-0 day at the Journeymen/ASICS Northeast Duals.
The Huskies opened the day with a tight 18-17 win over West Virginia, then capped the day by pounding Binghamton, 27-13, and Sacred Heart, 40-3.
“We took three duals today and that was what we set out to do,” said NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig. “We were on the attack and working to our positions. It’s about wrestling hard in crucial situations and we are making gains in that regard. We will feel good about today right now. Tomorrow, it’s back to work looking forward to the next challenge.”
Dual One: NIU Rallies Past West Virginia, 18-17
Facing a 10-0 deficit early, the Huskies won five of the final seven matches to knock off West Virginia, 18-17. The victory was NIU’s first over a Big 12 foe since Feb. 16, 2003, when NIU scored a 21-16 triumph over Missouri.
The Mountaineers put the Huskies in an early hole with decisions at 125 and 133, followed by a major decision at 141 for a 10-0 WVU advantage. Gabe Morse (Alto, Mich./Lowell) got NIU on the board at 149 with a tight 3-2 victory over James Dekrone. However, the Huskies’ big break came moments later when Andrew Morse (Alto, Mich./Lowell) pinned Brutus Scheffel in the 157 match and getting NIU within one at the intermission.
Shaun’Qae McMurtry (Lockport, Ill./Lockport Twp.) put the Huskies on top following his 8-3 win against Tim Wheeling at 165. Yet, WVU reclaimed the lead with a decision at 174 and a major decision at 184 to make it a 17-12 lead for the Mountaineers.
Needing a win to stay alive, Shawn Scott (Holly, Mich./Holly) scored a 5-0 decision against Jake A. Smith to get the Huskies within two and set up a winner-take-all bout at heavyweight. Despite the pressure, Arthur Bunce (Munith, Mich./Dansville) emerged victorious in the final match, defeating A.J. Vizcarrondo, 5-2, to clinch the Huskie victory.
Dual Two: Huskies Breeze Past Bearcats, 27-13
NIU used a fast start in the second dual of the day to coast to a 27-13 victory over the Binghamton Bearcats.
Derek Elmore (Loves Park, Ill./Harlem) got the Huskies started with a pin of Thierno Diallo at 125 for a 6-0 NIU lead. Danny Carlson (Chicago, Ill./Lane Tech) followed that up with a tight 5-3 double overtime victory over David White at 133, while Tyler Argue (Matteson, Ill./Mt. Carmel) won at 141 with a 14-10 triumph against Nick Tighe.
The Morse twins pushed the Huskie lead to 18-0 at halftime. At 149, Gabe earned a 7-3 decision against Dylan Caruana, while Andrew defeated Vincent Deprez, 6-0, at 157.
The Bearcats got on the board with a pin at 165, but NIU countered when Trace Engelkes (Winnebago, Ill./Winnebago) defeated Steve Schneider with a 9-7 decision at 174. Following a BU win at 184, Scott (Holly, Mich./Holly) stuck Caleb Wallace in the 197 match. The Bearcats got the final points with a major decision at heavyweight, but it wasn’t nearly enough to catch NIU.
Dual Three: Huskies Rout Pioneers, 40-3
In the final dual of the day, NIU made quick work of Sacred Heart with a 40-3 victory.
Once again, Elmore got the Huskies off to a quick start, as the Marion, Iowa, native pinned SHU’s Tim Johnson in just over a minute to put NIU up, 6-0. Carlson followed that up with a 17-4 victory over Robert O’Neill, while Argue and Gabe Morse both scored technical falls to quickly put the Huskies at a 20-0 lead.
Andrew Morse kept the dominant showing going with an 11-1 win over Matt Fisher at 157. After the break, Dylan Dobzanski (Franklinville, N.J./Delsea Regional) earned a tough 6-4 decision against Johnny Vrasidas, while Bryce Gorman (Manhattan, Ill./Lincoln-Way Central) grabbed a 7-4 victory against Conan Schuster.
The Pioneers averted the shutout with a decision at 184, but Scott and Bunce finished the dual with convincing wins. Scott took a 21-10 major decision against Sasha Oliinyk at 197, then Bunce followed that up with a first period pin of Daniel Hayden.
NIU returns home next week to host Big Ten foe Michigan State at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5, in the Chick Evans Field House. For more information on NIU wrestling and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.