The 22nd-ranked Utah Valley University wrestling team started the South Beach Duals off with a bang by defeating the 13th-ranked Purdue Boilermakers on Saturday morning in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. UVU's comeback attempt then fell just short in its second contest of the day as it suffered a 26-19 setback to Virginia on Saturday afternoon at the Fort Lauderdale Convention Center.
In the big win over the Big Ten Boilermakers (2-2, 0-1 B1G), the Wolverines (6-3, 0-0 Big 12) won seven of the 10 bouts, which included falls from No. 23 Will Sumner (184 pounds) and No. 8 Tate Orndorff (heavyweight), as well as a 6-0 upset victory from Grant LaMont over No. 9 Griffin Parriott at 157 pounds. In the nightcap versus the Cavaliers (6-4, 0-0 ACC), UVA jumped out to an early 23-3 advantage thanks to a trio of early falls, but UVU responded by winning four of the final five matches to drop the tightly contested contest by just seven points.
"The Purdue match was a really big win for us. I thought that the guys prepared really well during the break, and it showed," head UVU coach Greg Williams said. "A team like Purdue is solid throughout their lineup, and for us to win seven matches shows the kind of toughness that we have. We then went five and five with Virginia but gave up too many bonus points. This wasn't the result we wanted (against Virginia), but I'm pleased with how the guys competed, and we're looking forward to seeing what we can do here tomorrow (Sunday)."
After an opening loss by technical fall, freshman Isaiah Delgado then got the Wolverines on the scoreboard against the Big Ten Boilermakers with a 12-9 decision over Bjorn Schroeder at 133 pounds. In his first collegiate dual meet contest, Delgado turned Schroeder midway through the final period and recorded a decisive four-point nearfall to give the UVU freshman the 12-9 win and pull the Wolverines within 5-3 in the dual. Tenth-ranked Matt Findlay followed with a 9-3 decision over Nate Limmex to give UVU a 6-5 lead. Findlay remains undefeated on the year at 8-0 after recording a trio of takedowns, a pair of penalty points and an escape to give the Wolverines the lead in the dual after three matches.
Purdue bounced back with a win at 149 to take an 8-6 lead in the contest, but Grant LaMont followed with a big 6-0 decision over No. 9 Griffin Parriott to give the Wolverines a 9-8 advantage. LaMont dominated the bout with a second-period escape and a takedown followed by a third-period nearfall and an additional riding time point to earn the 6-0 win over the highly-ranked foe. The win was the first of four straight for the Wolverines, as No. 8 Demetrius Romero, No. 17 Kimball Bastian and No. 23 Will Sumner followed with consecutive wins to stretch UVU's lead to 22-8 in the team score over the 13th-ranked Boilermakers.
Romero earned an 11-2 major decision over Cole Wysocki to push Utah Valley's advantage to 13-8. Bastian then picked up a hard earned 6-4 overtime win over No. 13 Dylan Lydy to extend UVU's advantage to 16-8. With the bout deadlocked at 3-3 at the end of regulation, the two ranked foes then headed to overtime. After a scoreless opening sudden victory period, Bastian and Lydy each recorded an escape in the first tiebreaker rounds to send it to the second sudden victory round tied at 4-4. Bastian then managed to record the win over the 2018 NCAA qualifier with a takedown in the second sudden victory period to take the bout by a score of 6-4. The 23rd-ranked Sumner capped the spurt with a second-period fall over Max Lyon to extend UVU's lead to 22-8. In the second period, Sumner managed to flip Lyon on his back and pin him at the 4:10 mark to record the fall and give the Wolverines the large lead in the team score.
Purdue's ninth-ranked Christian Brunner responded with a 7-2 decision at 197 over No. 13 Tanner Orndorff, but his younger brother and eighth-ranked Tate Orndorff bounced back with a first-period fall over Jacob Aven to seal the victory for the Wolverines. Tate Orndorff picked up a late takedown at the end of the first and quickly pinned Aven just as time in the period expired to record UVU's seventh victory of the dominant performance over the 13th-ranked Boilermakers.
The victory marked Utah Valley's first over Purdue in program history and its third in school history over an opponent from the Big Ten Conference. UVU now holds its Big Ten wins over Purdue and Rutgers on the season, as well as Michigan State back in 2015.
In UVU's second dual of the day, the Wolverines found themselves in an early 12-0 hole after dropping back-to-back matches by fall to a pair of ranked Cavaliers. Tenth-ranked Findlay got the Wolverines on the board with a 10-4 decision over No. 17 Sam Krivus to pull the team score to 12-3, but back responded UVA with another pin at 149 to extend its lead to 18-3. The Cavaliers followed with a 22-4 technical fall win at 157 to grow their lead to 23-3.
The eighth-ranked Romero then picked up a late takedown to seal a 6-4 victory over No. 18 Cam Coy at 165 to make it a 23-6 contest and start a streak of three-straight wins for the Wolverines. Seventeenth-ranked Bastian followed with a 10-2 major decision over Drew Peck for UVU's first bonus-point win of the contest. The victory pulled the Wolverines to 23-10 with three matches to go. The 23rd-ranked Sumner then recorded UVU's third-straight win with a disqualification victory over Chance McClure to give the Wolverines six much-needed points and make it 23-16. With Sumner holding an 11-2 advantage late in the second period, McClure was disqualified after accruing too many stall calls.
In a match that proved to be the difference in the dual, two-time NCAA qualifier and 13th-ranked Tanner Orndorff then found himself locked in a battle with No. 7 Jay Aiello of UVA at 197 pounds. Orndorff managed to get a last-second takedown at the end of the second period to take a 4-2 lead, as well as a last-second reversal at the end of regulation to send it to overtime. But it wasn't enough as Aiello gained the go-ahead takedown in sudden victory to record the 8-6 overtime win and lock up the dual for the Cavaliers.
In the final match of the day, No. 8 Tate Orndorff didn't disappoint by earning an 11-5 decision over Robert Scherer for his second win of the day, closing the dual at 26-19.
Both UVU and UVA won five matches apiece in the contest, but bonus points proved to be the difference.Comment on this story
In all, five Wolverines won both of their matches Saturday in Findlay, Romero, Bastian, Sumner and Tate Orndorff.
The No. 22 Wolverines will conclude action at the South Beach Duals by taking on two more nationally ranked foes on Sunday in No. 7 NC State and No. 9 Minnesota. The 22nd-ranked Wolverines will first face NC State at 11 a.m. ET, before closing the dual meet tournament against the Minnesota Golden Gophers at 1 p.m. Both matches will be streamed live on TrackWrestling.com, as well as on Instagram Live (@UVU_Wrestling).