Wrestlers make most of first tournament
LEBANON, Tenn. – Corey Bleaken posted five victories while Eric Metzler and BJ Stewart both registered four wins, leading Cumberland’s wrestling team last Sunday at the Hokie Open in Salem, Va. The tournament featured more than 400 entrants and the Bulldogs posted 17 victories over Division I opponents.
Bleaken, a senior who is redshirting this season and participating in tournaments, unattached, placed sixth overall at 165 pounds. The Clifton, N.J., native defeated Chattanooga’s Wiley Davis by Fall at 1:53 before falling to Old Dominion’s Chris Brown by Fall at 6:53. Bleaken came back to win his final four matches, including victories over Liberty’s Julian Colon (Fall, 1:35), King College’s Patrick Spano (Fall, 0:36), Ohio University’s Kevin Christensen (Fall, 3:09) and Kent State’s Sli Bosterman (Fall, 6:56).
Metzler went 4-2 in the meet at 197, also placing sixth overall. The New Orleans, La., native defeated Campbellsville’s Scott Wern, 12-4, and Newberry College’s Joe Grisko, 6-4, before falling to North Carolina’s Zac Bennett by Fall at 0:39 in the quarterfinals. Metzler then won by Fall at 1:51 over Old Dominion’s Victor Njomo and VMI’s Ronnie Ellsworth, 8-4.
Stewart finished in the top eight as well, though he final match was not wrestled in the heavyweight division. The Rome, Ga., native dropped a 7-5 decision in his first match to Old Dominion’s Jack Burbank, but won his next four outings. Stewart defeated North Carolina’s Michael Gregory, 12-4; Ohio’s Jeremy Johnson by Fall at 1:00; Newberry’s Jake Elkins by Fall at 1:34; and North Carolina’s Ziad Haddad by Fall at 4:05.
Junior James Casadaban and freshman Noah Hunt both recorded 3-2 marks in the one-day event hosted by Virginia Tech.
Casadaban won by first match at 157 by Fall at 0:42 over King College’s Clayton Buckley before falling in his second outing, 6-4, to Gardner-Webb’s Alex Medved. The New Orleans, La., native posted victories over Old Dominion’s Rodin Ndandula by Fall at 3:45 and ODU’s Derek Gallagher, 8-3, before dropping a 6-3 decision to Kent State’s Ross Tice.
Hunt lost to Duke’s Peter Terrezza, 13-2, in his first match at 125, but rebounded to pick up victories over Old Dominion’s Josh Gillis, King College’s Eddie Long (Fall, 5:04) and Newberry’s Steven McLeod, 12-8, before falling to Ohio’s Jake Wojcik, 10-1.
Freshman Matthew Stanfield wrestled unattached and registered a victory over Campbellsville’s Tommy Pretty, 10-8. Pretty was an NAIA All-American last season and is currently ranked third at 133.
Full results from the meet may be found at this link: http://www.hokieopen.com/Documents/2009/Results/2009_Hokie_Open.html#.