Wrestling: Johnston, Jones Lead WVU at Reno
By Ira Green for MSNsportsNET.com
December 20, 2009
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Sophomore Colin Johnston and redshirt senior Donnie Jones led the West Virginia University wrestling team Sunday at the Reno Tournament of Champions in Reno, Nev.
Johnston, who went 6-1 at the tournament at 133 pounds, defeated Cory Vombaur twice on Sunday, with the second victory giving Johnston third place. The Eighty-Four, Pa., native opened the match with a takedown less than 10 seconds into the period, and after Vombaur escaped, Johnston tacked on another takedown. Johnston added an escape in the second period, a takedown in the third and was awarded a point for 2:13 in riding time en route to the 8-3 victory.
Johnston started the tournament off with a bang. He recorded back-to-back victories before falling to top-seed Boris Novachkov of Cal Poly, 2-1, in a tiebreaker. The match ended with a great deal of controversy, as Novachkov earned an escape point in the overtime session and then hung on to Johnston without being awarded a stall warning. Johnston, however, bounced back pinning Rayn Arand of Southwest Oregon, pinning Navy’s Patrick McCaffrey, the No. 4 seed and then pinning Kasey Garnhart en route to the third-place match.
At 165 pounds, Jones took fourth place after falling to Stanford’s Nick Amuchastegui, 3-2, in the third-place bout. A No. 4 seed, Jones pinned his first opponent and then registered a major decision before facing Amuchastegui for the first time in the event, a 9-5 victory for the Stanford wrestler. After falling to the consolation bracket, Jones racked up three-straight victories, including a 3-1 decision over No. 3 seed Alex Meade of Oklahoma State.
Jones now stands at 12-6 this season.
Redshirt sophomore Ryan Goodman (157) and true freshmen Shane Young (125) and Brandon Loro also had impressive showings at the tournament.
Goodman went 3-2 at the event, while Loro, competing for just the third time this season, won two matches. Loro pinned Austin Thompson of Southwest Oregon and then earned a 6-3 decision over South Dakota State’s Nick Hagar.
Young was faced with a difficult match to open the tournament, No. 10 seed Tyler Mumbulo of Upper Iowa, who is a redshirt senior. Never showing an ounce of inexperience, Young opened the match with a quick takedown, then a two-point nearfall followed by a three-point nearfall. At the end of the first period, Young had accumulated 2:30 in riding time. Young tacked on another takedown in the third session and earned a point for riding time to gain a 10-1 major decision.
Moving on to his next match, Young was dealt Ryan Mango of Stanford. Young led 1-0 after two periods of action and had the advantage midway into the third period before Mango earned an escape and posted a late, match-winning takedown. Young went on to win two more matches, including a major decision, before losing a close 4-3 match to No. 4 seed Michael Martinez of Wyoming.
Heading into the championship matches, WVU was 11th out of 25 teams in the team standings with 40.5 points.
The Mountaineers will break from action and return to competition with a dual meet against 13th-ranked Indiana on Jan. 2 at the WVU Coliseum. Action is set to begin at noon.
125 pounds – Young (3-2)
133 pounds – Johnston (6-1)
149 pounds – Loro (2-2)
157 pounds – Goodman (3-2)
165 pounds – Jones (5-2)
174 pounds – Litton (0-2)
197 pounds – Rooney (0-2)
HWT – Haines (1-2)