CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia wrestling team (7-5) used three bonus-point victories, including a pair of technical falls, to pull away and grab a 23-15 win over American (7-8) on Saturday afternoon at Memorial Gym.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After American won the first two weight classes, Brian Courtney gutted out a decision at 141 pounds to kick off a stretch of four straight victories for the Cavaliers. Jarod Verkleeren posted a technical fall at 149 pounds before Jake Keating (157) and Justin McCoy (165) would notch back-to-back decisions and claim a 14-9 lead for the Cavaliers.
After another American victory at 174 pounds, Virginia would get a tech fall from Neil Antrassian (184) and a major decision Michael Battista (197) to lock up the dual.
The Hoos won six weight classes on the afternoon.
NOTES ON THE DUAL
• Virginia improved to 14-1 all-time against American with the victory on Saturday afternoon.
• The Hoos have won eight consecutive matches in the series with the Eagles dating back to the 1990-91 season.
• Michael Battista continues to build on his team-leading win total and is now 24-6 on the season.
• Neil Antrassian hit the 20-win mark with his tech fall and is 20-5 on the year.
FROM HEAD COACH STEVE GARLAND
“Stating the obvious, we needed a win and we got one. Jarod Verkleeren just looked amazing; his offense was there with a lot of good turns on top. Jake Keating rebounded from a tough loss the night before and looked really good. Justin McCoy was all heart at 165 and fought like crazy to tie it, come back and get the big win. That might have been the dual right there. He really set a tone for the rest of the match. Neil Antrassian got a tech fall of his own to rebound really nicely. Michael Battista dropped a ton of points in his match and looked good. A really heart-warming moment was bumping Krystian Kinsey, a 184 pounder, up to heavyweight and he wrestled his heart out and was right there. I hope our guys enjoy this win and I want to thank everyone who came out to support us. Hang in there with us, we have a lot of wrestling left this season.”
UP NEXT FOR THE HOOS
Virginia continues to wrestle at home next weekend when the Cavaliers host Duke on Senior Night. The dual is set for a 7 p.m. start at Mem Gym.
VIRGINIA 23, AMERICAN 15
125: Maximillian Leete (AU) pinned Patrick McCormick, 0:22 – AU 6, UVA 0
133: Jack Maida (AU) dec. Keyveon Roller, 6-2 – AU 9, UVA 0
141: No. 29 Brian Courtney dec. Raymond Lopez (AU), 8-4 – AU 9, UVA 3
149: No. 26 Jarod Verkleeren tech fall Antonio Segura (AU), 19-1 (4:57) – AU 9, UVA 8
157: Jake Keating dec. Jack Nies (AU), 10-4 – UVA 11, AU 9
165: No. 17 Justin McCoy dec. Caleb Campos (AU), 13-9 – UVA 14, AU 9
174: Lucas White (AU) dec. Justin Phillips, 4-0 – UVA 14, AU 12
184: No. 17 Neil Antrassian tech fall Colin Shannon (AU) – 17-2 (4:42) – UVA 19, AU 12
197: No. 24 Michael Battista major dec. Connor Bourne (AU), 16-5 – UVA 23, AU 12
HWT: Will Jarrell (AU) dec. Krystian Kinsey, 7-4 – UVA 23, AU 15