A quick start from Bryan Lantry and Kyle Akins and upsets of nationally ranked wrestlers by Tyler Rill and James Benjamin to propel the Bulls to a 22-14 MAC victory over the Old Dominion Monarchs. The win is the Bulls’ 6th win in their last 7 duals and they have brought their season record to 7-4 while evening their conference record to 2-2.
The Bulls got out to a fast start with Kyle Akins manhandling Steven Simpson to an 18-2 technical fall. Not to be outdone, Bryan Lantry lived up to his #18 ranking in the nation and used several late takedowns to extend his lead an give the Bulls back to back bonus point victories extending out a commanding 9-0 lead after the first two bouts.
Jason Estevez took Kevin Budock into the sudden victory overtime period knotted at 1-1 and Estevez looked like he had the advantage after shooting in on a single leg, however, he was caught in admittedly a great scramble with Budock and he was able to secure the takedown giving ODU their first points.
Colt Cotten took on #32 Mike Hayes and gutted out a tough match. After falling behind early, Cotten took a hard spill in the 2nd period and was writhing on the mat in pain clutching his knee that was surgically repaired a few years ago. Miraculously, Cotten was able to get back up and complete the match, albeit with a limp and pain in every step he took. It’s not easy wrestling through pain like that and I give him a ton of credit for being able to even finish the match.
Alex Smythe got UB back on track with a close 2-1 decision at 157 pounds, earning a takedown to seal the victory in the second period before hanging on through the third.
Then, Tyler Rill wrestled one of, if not the finest matchof his entire career. He started off fast against #15 Seldon Wright, earning the first three takedowns of the bout. Rill was sharp throughout and put on an All-American caliber display of wrestling this evening. Rill would earn several more takedowns en route to a 13-5 major decision victory.
Antonio Agee earned a close sudden victory decision over Muhamed McBryde at 174 pounds before Brett Perry lost an 11-2 major decision to former All-American Jack Dechow.
I mentioned in my preview for this dual that James Benjamin has a penchant for upsetting nationally ranked opponents and tonight was no different. He wrestled #10 Kevin Beazley to a 1-1 tie in regulation before earning the 3-1 sudden victory win after executing a spin move after sprawling out to avoid Beazley’s single leg takedown shot. The win was Benjamin’s second victory over a top 10 opponent this season.
Jake Gunning capped off the victory with a 4-2 decision of Old Dominion’s Will Hilliard to give the Bulls a 22-14 win.
All around this was a fun one to watch if you are a UB fan; the dominance from Akins and Lantry, the dominant win by Rill over the #15 ranked guy in the nation and a thrilling win by Benjamin over the #10 ranked guy in the nation. Even in the losses UB was still competitive and put on fun matches to watch.
From here, UB will have just over a week to prepare for in-state rival Hofstra when they make the trip down to Hempstead next Saturday, January 28th.
Buffalo 22, Old Dominion 14
125: #32 Kyle Akins (UB) tech. fall Steven Simpson (ODU), 18-2
133: #18 Bryan Lantry (UB) maj. dec. Alex Madrigal (ODU), 17-6
141: Kevin Budock (ODU) SV-1 Jason Estevez (UB), 3-1
149: #32 Mike Hayes (ODU) maj. #29 Colt Cotten (UB), 12-2
157: Alex Smythe (UB) dec. Austin Eads (ODU), 2-1
165: Tyler Rill (UB) maj. dec. #15 Seldon Wright (OD) 13-5
174: Antonio Agee (ODU) SV-1 Muhamed McBryde (UB), 6-4
184: Jack Dechow (ODU) maj. dec. Brett Perry (UB), 9-2
197: #22 James Benjamin (UB) SV-1 #10 Kevin Beazley (ODU)
285: Jake Gunning (UB) dec. Austin Hilliard (ODU), 4-2