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LU Takes Second Straight Dual Over Bulldog
With their second consecutive dual victory over the Southern Conference foe, Liberty raises its early season record to 2-0. The loss evens the Bulldogs' record at 1-1.
Liberty opened the dual with the first of four bouts decided by a single point, as Nick Knowles picked up a victory in his first time on the mats this year. The 184-pounder came from behind to defeat Kip Thompson, 7-6, giving Liberty the early 3-0 edge.
The homestanding Bulldogs gained the lead with a major decision at 197 pounds, when Odie Delaney ran his individual record on the year to 4-0. The 12-1 major over Liberty's Brandon Johnson gave The Citadel a 4-3 dual lead.
Two-time NCAA national qualifier Patrick Walker took to the mats for the first time this year, downing Aaron Brown for the second straight year by decision at heavyweight. Last year, Walker picked up an 8-1 decision over Brown at the Liberty Quad, helping the Flames to a 21-15 dual victory in Lynchburg on Jan. 26.
This year, Brown remained closer to Walker, but the junior was able to walk away from the bout with a 4-1 decision, allowing the Flames to regain the advantage in the dual, 6-4.
Walker's victory jump started Liberty, as the dual match continued with the lighter weight classes. The Flames picked up one-point victories at both 125 and 133 pounds, extending their lead to 12-4.
Joe Pantaleo edged Tyler Sim at 125 pounds to open his collegiate career at 2-0, while three-time NCAA national qualifier Christian Smith netted an escape from Pierre Frazile to record the lone point in the 1-0 decision at 133 pounds.
The Bulldogs tried to get back into the dual at 141 pounds, when Derek Royster was able to escape a Frankie Gayeski move and pin the junior 2:40 into the bout, narrowing Liberty's lead to 12-10.
However, Tim Harner used the experience of three straight trips to the national championship to control his second match-up of the year at 149 pounds. The senior, who is ranked No. 19 nationally at 141 pounds, recorded his second technical fall win of the season by handing David Ivanschenko his first loss in six bouts this year, 18-5.
Julian Colon and Brad Clark followed with decisions at 157 and 165 pounds, respectively, each scoring six points in their bouts. Colon defeated Justin Sparrow, 6-4, at 157 pounds, followed by Clark's 6-4 win over Keith Koziel at 165 pounds. The pair of decisions gave the Flames an insurmountable lead at 22-10.
The Citadel ran one of their more experienced players out on the mat in the 10th weight class at 174 pounds, with J.C. Oddo pushing his record to 5-0 on the year with his third win by fall, this time at 4:00 over Aaron Kelley to end the dual on a high note for homestanding Bulldogs.
Following back-to-back duals to open the year, the Flames will begin the tournament portion of their schedule when they travel to Ithaca, N.Y., to participate in the Body Bar Invitational. The beginning whistle in the all-day event, hosted by Cornell, is scheduled to sound at 9 a.m.
Liberty 22, The Citadel 16
125 – Joe Pantaleo (LU) dec. Tyler Sim (CIT), 3-2, LU 9-4
133 – Christian Smith (LU) dec. Pierre Frazile (CIT), 1-0, LU 12-4
141 – Derek Royster (CIT) fall Frankie Gayeski (LU), 2:40, LU 12-10
149 – No. 19 Tim Harner (LU) major dec. David Ivanschenko, 18-5, LU 16-10
157 – Julian Colon (LU) dec. Justin Sparrow, 6-4, LU 19-10
165 – Brad Clark (LU) dec. Keith Koziel (CIT), 6-2, LU 22-10
174 – J.C. Oddo (CIT) fall Aaron Kelley (LU), 4:00, LU 22-16
* 184 – Nick Knowles (LU) dec. Kip Thompson (CIT), 7-6, LU 3-0
197 – Odie Delaney (CIT) major dec. Brandon Johnson (LU), 12-1, CIT 4-3
HWT – Patrick Walker (LU) dec. Aaron Brown (LU), 4-1, LU 6-4
* - Starting weight class