Wrestling Closes Out Home Schedule with 24-6 Win over Eastern Michigan

Feb. 22, 2008

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Head Coach Tom Minkel
Senior Joe Williams
Senior Freddie DeRamus

EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State wrestling team used eight decisions to top Eastern Michigan tonight, 24-6 at Jenison Field House. The Spartans, who snap a 10 match losing streak, improve to 4-12 and conclude the home portion of their 2007-08 schedule. MSU is now 11-1 all-time against the Eagles.

The night began at the 149-weight class with junior Eddie Skowneski taking a 8-5 decision over David Pienaar for an early 3-0 Spartan lead. Pienaar had two takedowns, sandwiched around a Skowneski escape to lead 4-1 after the first period. EMU deferred and MSU chose down to begin the second. Skowneski took advantage with the only points of the period with a reversal 47 seconds into the second. After a neutral start to begin the third, Skowneski took down Pienaar 14 seconds in to take his first lead (5-4). An escape evened the match with 37 seconds remaining, but the Spartan junior closed it out with a takedown with 14 seconds left. One riding time point for Skowneski brought the final decision to 8-5.

At 157, EMU's Cory Mancuso knocked off redshirt freshman John Fulger, 9-2, to even the match overall at three.

Junior Rex Kendle won his 18th match of the season at 165. Kendle opened with a takedown in the opening minute and gathered riding time, until Justin Brandel escaped with 47 seconds left for a 2-1 tally after one. EMU deferred and Kendle started down to begin the second and would score a reversal 51 seconds in for a 4-1 edge after the initial five minutes. The lone points of the third came from a stalling point against the Spartan. A riding time point for Kendle, pushed the final to 5-2 and would give MSU a 6-3 lead that would not relinquish.

In the 174-pound bout, junior John Murphy topped Derek Foore, 9-5, to improve his season record to 22-15. Murphy coverted a takedown 30 seconds in, but Foore tied the bout back up with a reversal two minutes in. With 23 seconds left in the first period, Murphy took down Foore again. MSU deferred and with Foore down, Murphy let him escape in the initial seconds. Mutphy countered with a takedown at 33 seconds and rode Foore until he escaped just over 35 seconds later. A Murphy takedown 54 second into the final stanza put the match away, as a late escape by EMU and a riding time point for MSU, led to a 9-5 final.



Sophomore Nick Palmieri evened his dual record to 16-16 with a 4-1 decision over Charlie Pienaar at 184 pounds. After a scoreless first period, Pienaar deferred and MSU chose down. Palmieri escaped with 39 seconds on the clock for the first point of the bout and the only point of the period. With EMU starting down, Palmieri claimed three near fall points 32 seconds in to open up a 4-0 edge. Pienaar would escape with 50 second remaining but could score no more, as the Spartans opened a 12-3 lead at the intermission.

Competing in his final match at Jenison Field House, No. 15 Joe Williams went out in style with the Spartans largest win of the night with a 8-2 decision over John McClure at 197 pounds. Wiliiams, who improved to 24-11 overall, began the bout with a takedown midway through the first period. A McClure escape late in the first and a scoreless second, brought the score to 2-1 entering the final frame. Starting down, Williams escaped 19 seconds in and would add a takedown with 45 seconds on the clock to open up a 5-1 advantage. A McClure escape was quickly followed by another Williams takedown with only eight seconds left. A point of riding time added to the 8-2 final.

Eastern Michigan won its second bout of the night in the heavyweight division, as David Wade held off Alan O'Donnell, 3-1, bringing the overall total to 15-6.

Senior Clint Frutiger returned to the mat for the first time since the Penn State Open in early December, to beat Andrew Novak, 8-5. In his final home bout in green and white, Frutiger began with two takedowns, followed by two EMU escapes, in the first period. A Novak escape was the lone scoring in the second, narrowing the Frutiger lead to 4-3. Novak allowed Frutiger to escape to begin the third and followed with a takedown in the first minute to grow his lead to 7-3. With two seconds remaining, EMU was awarded a reversal and MSU earned a riding point, for a 8-5 final.

In the most highly-anticipated match up of the night, No. 4 Franklin Gomez narrowly beat No. 15 Sean Carter, 4-3, for his 11th-straight bout win. Gomez, who improves to 24-1 overall, began with a takedown 1:09 in and quickly allowed Carter to escape. Starting the second neutral, Gomez added a takedown at the 57 second mark, but saw another Carter escape to keep the bout close at 4-2 entering the third. Carter started down and escaped 21 seconds in, but neither wrestler could garner any more points the rest of the way.

The Spartans closed out the night with a 5-3 win at the 141 weight class by junior Jeff Wimberley over Zach Donofrio. The opening period saw Wimberley have a fast start with a takedown in the first 20 seconds. Twenty seconds later, Donofrio escaped and the two wrestlers battled to a neutral second period. Donofrio allowed Wimberley to escape to being the third and would take down the Spartan to even the bout at three with 41 seconds remaining. However, Wimberley escaped 15 seconds later and would hold off the Eagle attack for the win. An extra point of riding time brought the final to 5-3.

Prior to the start of the meet, Michigan State honored its three graduating seniors - Freddie DeRamus, Frutiger and Williams.

Michigan State wraps up the 2007-08 regular season on Sunday, Feb. 24 at in-state rival Michigan. The Spartans and the No. 10 Wolverines are scheduled to begin at 12 p.m., live on the Big Ten Network.

Friday, Feb. 22, 2008
East Lansing, Mich. • Jenison Field House

(Wt.) Decision
(149) Eddie Skowneski (MSU) dec. David Pienaar (EMU), 8-5
(157) Cory Mancuso (EMU) dec. John Fulger (MSU), 9-2
(165) Rex Kendle (MSU) dec. Justin Brandel (EMU), 5-2
(174) John Murphy (MSU) dec. Derek Foore (EMU), 9-5
(184) Nick Palmieri (MSU) dec. Charlie Pienaar (EMU), 4-1
(197) No. 15 Joe Williams (MSU) dec. John McClure (EMU), 8-2
(HWT) David Wade (EMU) dec. Alan O'Donnell (MSU), 3-1 (OT)
(125) Clint Frutiger (MSU) dec. Andrew Novak (EMU), 8-5
(133) No. 4 Franklin Gomez (MSU) dec. No. 15 Sean Clair (EMU), 4-3
(141) Jeff Wimberley (MSU) dec. Zach Donofrio (EMU), 5-3 MSU win 24-6