Nov. 6, 2011
Juniors Jordan Thome and Daniel Young each recorded pins to help lead the Army wrestling team to a 23-22 victory over 24th-ranked Iowa State in the Black Knights' season opener Sunday afternoon at Case Gym.
Army led 23-9 lead with just three bouts remaining, but the Black Knights had to withstand a furious Iowa State rally to secure the program's first-ever victory over the Cyclones.
"Beating a tradition rich Iowa State program will go down as one of best wins in Army wrestling history," said Army head coach Joe Heskett. "It is evidence of the trajectory of this program, the loyalty of our alumni and friends, and the support our administration. This victory was a complete team effort rooted in our 'Build and Believe' culture.
"I could not be more proud of our performance," added Heskett. "This coaching staff believed in the significant strides that our athletes have made over the last year, but our confidence in them is not the prevailing factor in getting their hand raised. It was the confidence our cadets possessed in themselves that was truly one of the most inspiring and memorable moments of my career as an athlete or coach."
The match began at 125 pounds and Iowa State (0-1) jumped out to a 3-0 lead as 13th-ranked Ryak Finch scored an 8-1 victory over Army sophomore David White.
The Black Knights (1-0) quickly took control of the match, however, winning the next four bouts to surge in front, 19-3. Thome, Young and senior Jimmy Rafferty each earned bonus points to help Army build its commanding advantage.
Thome, the Black Knights' lone returning NCAA qualifier from a season ago, began the uprising as the 133-pounder pinned Ben Cash in 5 minutes, 39 seconds. Fellow junior Connor Hanafee kept Army's momentum going by securing a 6-1 triumph versus Max Mayfield at 141 pounds.
Young made it 15-3 in favor of Army as he pinned Trent Weatherman in 2:44 in the 149-pound matchup. Rafferty followed with a dominating 15-4 major decision against Michael Moreno at 157 pounds.
Eighth-ranked Andrew Sorenson halted the Black Knights' run of consecutive wins in the 165-pound bout as the Iowa State senior pinned Army sophomore Alex Smith in 3:22.
The Black Knights' regained the momentum in the 174-pound bout as Army junior Collin Wittmeyer recorded a 10-2 major decision opposite ISU's Mikey England to extend the lead to 23-9 with just three matches left on the docket.
Iowa State posted its third win of the match at 184 pounds as Boaz Beard notched a 19-5 major decision versus Army junior Derek Stanley, trimming the Black Knights' lead to 23-13. The Cyclones got to within 23-19 after Cole Shafer pinned Army senior Daniel Mills in the 197-pound matchup. Shafer needed just 1:20 to take Mills to the mat.
Tyler Christensen needed to pick up bonus points in the heavyweight bout to lift Iowa State past Army, but the Cyclone sophomore had to settle for a 3-1 overtime decision opposite Black Knight freshman Stephen Snyder.
Army returns to action later today (Nov. 6) when the Black Knights meet Boston University at 5 p.m.
Match Notes: Army improves to 1-3 all-time versus Iowa State ... today's decision marked Army's first one-point win since defeating Ohio, 19-18, last December ... Army head coach Joe Heskett won a national championship as a member of the Iowa State wrestling team during his collegiate career ... Thome's pin was the 16th of his career ... Young's pin was the ninth of his career ... Rafferty's major decision was the seventh of his career ... he led the Black Knights last season with five major decisions ... Wittmeyer's major decision was the seventh of his career.
Army 23, #24 Iowa State 22
125: #13 Ryak Finch (I) dec. David White, 8-1
133: Jordan Thome (A) pinned Ben Cash, 5:39
141: Connor Hanafee (A) dec. Max Mayfield, 6-1
149: Daniel Young (A) pinned Trent Weatherman, 2:44
157: Jimmy Rafferty (A) maj. dec. Michael Moreno, 15-4
165: #8 Andrew Sorenson (I) pinned Alex Smith, 3:22
174: Collin Wittmeyer maj. dec. Mikey England, 10-2
184: Boaz Beard (I) maj. dec. Derek Stanley, 19-5
197: Cole Shafer (I) pinned Daniel Mills, 1:20
285: Tyler Christensen (I) dec. Stephen Snyder, 3-1 (sv1)