Romero Keys UNC Wrestling Win over Western State
Behind senior Jason Romero's 9-8 decision at 125 pounds, the 16th-ranked UNC wrestling squad won its second straight dual, posting a 21-14 win over no. 14 Western State Saturday at Butler-Hancock Hall. The Bears improved to 2-4-1 overall, while Western State fell to 3-4-0.
UNC got things going early in the dual, which began at 157 pounds. Fourth-ranked Brody Olson won an 8-4 decision over Ryan Mizushima to improve to 15-9 on the season. Junior Brian Hufford followed that up with a 9-5 win over Dave Vondy to put the Bears up 6-0. After Western State's Steve Sisler defeated Shad Stagl 10-3 at 174 pounds, freshman Ryan Guillaume got the Bears back on track with a 4-1 win at 184 pounds. UNC freshman Jason McMillan sent the Bears into the intermission with a commanding 12-3 team lead when he defeated Jeff Mueller 9-2 at 197 pounds.
Sophomore heavyweight Tony Schunke continued the UNC momentum after the break. The East Los Angeles native pinned Tyler Ainsworth 22 seconds into their match to put UNC up 18-3, setting up the match of the night. UNC's eighth-ranked Romero battled the Mountaineers' Anthony Guillen at 125 pounds. In a back-and-forth match, Romero was able to withstand a late Guillen charge and take the match 9-8. Romero improved his record to 3-3, while Guillen fell to 16-6. With the victory, UNC's team lead was pushed to an insurmountable 21-3.
Western State took the evening's final three matches as Fred McCathron defeated Jon Nider at 133 pounds (16-5), Zac Stratton defeated Simon Hoepfner at 141 pounds (12-4) and Adrian Jiron defeated Andy Stumpf at 149 pounds (9-2).
The Bears return to action Thursday when they host Augustana in a North Central Conference tilt. Match time is slated for 7:00 p.m.