Grapplers suffer heartbreaking loss

first_imgAfter building a 17-12 lead heading into Sunday’s final match, the 184-pound weight class clash between Badgers’ freshman Justin Peterson and Huskies’ freshman Nick McClone, the Wisconsin men’s wrestling team seemed to have all but wrapped up yet another dual meet.But just 30 seconds into the second period, Peterson went from having the upper hand — a 5-4 advantage — to getting wrapped, dropped and ultimately pinned, propelling the No. 24 Huskies to a 18-17 upset over the No. 11-ranked Badgers. With the loss, the Badgers dropped to 4-1 overall on the season and 26-3 all-time against the Huskies.”I’m kind of at a loss for words right now,” Badgers head coach Barry Davis said. “But again, we need to just move forward.”The meet started off well for the Badgers, as 16th-ranked redshirt freshman Dallas Herbst eluded several holds early by Derick Hunsinger and then took it to the sophomore, winning 9-6 in the 197-pound weight class matchup to give the Badgers an early 3-0 dual lead.After back-to-back decisions went the way of the Huskies, including No. 20 Pat Castillo upsetting 18th-ranked Collin Cudd in the 125-pound matchup, senior Tom Clum took over.With the score still deadlocked at zero in his 133-pound match through the first period and 2-2 through the second, the No. 2-ranked Clum, in his second match of the season, used a pile drive maneuver on opponent Andy Hiatt time and time again, outscoring him 9-1 in the final frame to take the major decision 11-3 and give Wisconsin a 7-6 advantage.”I feel good,” Clum said. “A lot of times guys like that are trying to just keep the match close, give themselves a chance, so I knew that that was the case and it was hard to get anything going in the first period, but I knew that things would get rolling as the match went along.”Though Clum had a slow start, his form and patience proved to be too much for Hiatt.”I just waited,” Clum said. “I didn’t want to be over-anxious with a guy like that and let him squeak out a takedown or something, bring himself into the match, so I wasn’t going to try to force anything to the point of where I put myself in danger and I kind of waited until he came to me or opened a few doors because they always will.”While Clum dominated, the dual was in no way over. Winning the next matchup 6-0, Northern Illinois took a 9-7 lead heading into the halfway point.Wisconsin came out of the gates with a flurry, as No. 8-ranked Tyler Turner took it to No. 10 Mike Grimes 8-3 in the 149-pound matchup, and then No. 11-ranked Craig Henning shellacked Aaron Owen 11-0 in the 157-pound division for a major decision to give the Badgers a healthy 14-9 lead overall.After splitting the next two matchups, both of which were upsets as No. 16-ranked Jake Donar of Wisconsin lost to unranked Alex Nelson of Northern Illinois 5-1 in the 165-pound division and Kelly Flaherty of the Badgers squeaked past No. 11 Danny Burk 4-3 at 174, the Badgers found themselves on the upside of a 17-12 advantage heading into the final match of the afternoon. However, that lead was blown and the Badgers faced the feeling of defeat for the first time in this young season.”It really sucked,” Clum said. “There was a couple of matches that could [have] went either way (sic); we won a couple, they won a couple, but it’s early in the year and so I think we’re going to be all right.”What led to Wisconsin’s loss were the inconsistencies between each matchup. Not once did they win more than two consecutive and after a fast start following the break, the Badgers failed to run away with it, allowing the Huskies to hang around.”They hung around,” Davis said. “They got some knocks — some wins at [165] and [125] there that kept them in the match, so it came down to that one last match, and you know, we’re up 5-0 and [Peterson] gets reversed and gets turned and gets pinned.”last_img