The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local Sports

March 14, 2014

Pitt-Johnstown puts two wrestlers in semis

Cleveland, Ohio — Pitt-Johnstown 125-pounder Dave Fogle and 184-pounder Travis McKillop (184) each won their first two matches Friday to reach the semifinals of the NCAA Division II National Wrestling Tournament.

The Mountain Cats still have four wrestlers alive, going into today’s action in eighth place with 27 points. They trail team competition leader Notre Dame College by 141⁄2 points.

Fogle opened with a 5-2 decision over St. Cloud State’s Tanner Johnshoy, then scored a 4-1 win over Alex Johns of Indianapolis to earn his spot in today’s semifinals against Augustana’s T.J. North.

McKillop defeated Lake Erie’s Chevy Farris 9-2 then advanced to the semifinals with a 7-3 decision over Dallas Smith of Ouachita Baptist. McKillop will face Kyle Piatt (Western State) in the semifinals.

“Dave Fogle and Travis McKillop had dominating performances,” UPJ coach Pat Pecora said. “Zac Bennett and Josh Duplin lost very close matches.”

Bennett (197) and Duplin (285) each won opening-round bouts, but lost in the quarterfinals.

Bennett pinned Newberry’s Joe Grisko at 1:57 of the first period, but a late takedown lifted Upper Iowa’s Carl Broghammer to a 6-4 win and sent Bennett into the consolation bracket.

Bennett rebounded to defeat Sam Mangum (Western State) 6-5 in the second round of the consolations to earn the right to wrestle today.

Both of Duplin’s first-day matches were decided in tiebreakers.

He held off Lorenzo Serna 2-1 in the first round, but Maryville’s Donnell Walker defeated Duplin 4-3 in their quarterfinal.

Duplin stayed alive in the tournament with a 2-1 consolation-bracket victory over Southwest Minnesota State’s Cole Wilson.

Sam Hanau (141) and Cole Landowski (149) also wrestled for UPJ, but each went 0-2.

After one day of wrestling, Notre Dame leads with 44.5 points, Nebraska-Kearney is second with 41, Lindenwood has 36, St. Cloud State has 35.5, Maryville has 33 and Pitt-Johnstown is eighth with 27 team points.

“Overall, it was a good day,” Pecora said. “We brought six guys. Four of them are All-Americans, and two still have a chance to become national champions.”

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