Arizona State picks up first win in Ames since 1989, tops Cyclones 25-14
|Photo: Arizona State Sun Devil Athletics.|
The Devils – currently ranked in the Top-20 of all major wrestling polls – immediately found themselves digging out of a hole after a pin and major decision from Iowa State (1-4) put ASU (2-1) at a 10-0 deficit through just two bouts in the team's first dual of 2017. Arizona State's resolve never wavered, however, and it was all Sun Devils from that moment on.
Sophomore Nikko Villarreal sparked the comeback at 141 pounds as he rode out John Meeks in the second period to earn the riding point victory in a 3-2 decision to get ASU on the board.
No. 20 Josh Maruca shook off a shaky start and an early 4-1 hole at 149 pounds, as he ripped of 18 consecutive points for a huge tech fall victory. Maruca picked up a late take down in the first period followed by two near falls in the second to take a commanding 10-4 lead over Chase Straw into the third. It was all Maruca from there as he reeled off an escape, a takedown and two more near falls for the 19-4 victory to cut the Cyclone lead to 10-8.
It wasn't easy for seventh-ranked Josh Shields at 157 pounds, as he fended off a late takedown attempt at the buzzer to hold on to a 4-3 victory over Colston DiBlasi to give ASU its first lead at 11-10 and setting the table for the Valencia brothers.
It was business as usual for Anthony and Zahid with the former absolutely crushing Logan Breitenbach in an 18-1 tech fall victory before Zahid knocked off top-10 ranked Lelund Weatherspoon for the third time this season, 5-2.
After a major decision at 184 pounds cut ASU's lead to 19-14, Austyn Harris picked up his second victory of the season in a big way at 197 pounds as he knocked off Marcus Harrington with a late escape in the 3-2 decision to seal the victory for ASU and give the Sun Devils their first victory in Ames since 1989 – a year that Zeke Jones donned the maroon and gold singlet at 118 pounds.
No. 4 Tanner Hall capped things off with a business-like 2-1 victory over Quean Smith to set the final score at 25-14.
The Sun Devils will travel home on Saturday before getting right back to action in the team's Pac-12 opener against Cal Poly on Sunday at 2 p.m. MT in Tempe. The contest will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network Arizona and will mark ASU's annual Green Match at Wells Fargo Arena to support Sun Devil Athletics' green initiatives to drive sustainability at Arizona State.
Iowa State 14 – Arizona State 25
125: Markus Simmons (ISU) WBF Michael Nguyen (ASU), 1:30.
133: Earl Hall (ISU) maj. dec. Ted Rico (ASU), 14-4 (1:05 RT).
141: Nikko Villarreal (ASU) dec. John Meeks (ISU), 3-2.
149: Josh Maruca (ASU) tech. fall Chase Straw (ISU), 19-4.
157: Josh Shields (ASU) dec. Colston DiBlasi (ISU), 4-3.
165: Anthony Valencia (ASU) tech. fall Logan Breitenbach (ISU), 18-1.
174: Zahid Valencia (ASU) dec. Lelund Weatherspoon (ISU), 5-2.
184: Patrick Downey (ISU) maj. dec. Conner Small (ASU), 19-7 (3:46 RT).
197: Austyn Harris (ASU) dec. Marcus Harrington (ISU), 3-2.
285: Tanner Hall (ASU) dec. Quean Smith (ISU), 2-1.