MORGANTOWN, W.VA. (February 19, 1999) -- The 17th-ranked West Virginia wrestling team dropped a 19-13 decision to Edinboro in the Eastern Wrestling League (EWL) regular season title match at the WVU Coliseum on Friday night.
It was a night of excitement as six matches were decided by two points or less, including four matches that went into overtime.
The match began at heavyweight with an overtime match between two ranked opponents. Edinboro's 19th-ranked A.J. Johnson and WVU's 15th-ranked Sean Hage battled to a 2-2 tie at the end of regulation. After a scoreless first period, Hage scored the only takedown of regulation and Johnson scored an escape in both the second and third periods. Johnson scored his takedown in the sudden victory overtime to win 4-2 and get the Fighting Scots on the board first with a 3-0 lead.
WVU's Angelo Zegarelli and Edinboro's Jason Gabrielson also fought to a overtime period in the next bout at 125. Gabrielson led 4-2 after the second period and scored a penalty point and an escape in the third. Zegarelli came back with an escape, penalty point and a takedown in the final seconds to tie the score at 6-6. Gabrielson earned the takedown in sudden victory to earn the 8-6 win.
Edinboro's Patrick Howard earned an 11-4 decision over Ibin Lateef who was substituting for an injured Bob Patnesky at 133. All-American Whitey Chlebove, ranked ninth at 141 got the crowd excited as he avenged losses to Raphael Vega from last year with an 11-2 major decision. Chlebove earned two takedowns and a two-point near fall, plus 2:10 of riding-time in the first period alone. The Northamton, Pa., native moves into eighth-place on the WVU career wins list 86 career wins. Chlebove is on a seven-match win streak.
Down 9-4 heading into 149, WVU lost two matches to freshman in the line-up. Joe Carr lost a close 4-3 decision at 149 to 14th-ranked Ryan Shapert. Classmate Tom McMath was shutout 6-0 by Shapert's brother Shaun 6-0, that included 3:55 of riding-time.
Edinboro's largest win of the evening was at 165 as eighth-ranked Mark Samples defeated WVU's Richard Taylor 18-5. Samples scored seven takedowns and 3:02 of riding-time to earn the major decision.
Down 19-4, the Mountaineers earned two overtime wins at 174 and 184. The 174 match between 10th-ranked Sam Kline of WVU and 12th-ranked Josh Koscheck proved to be as exciting as expected. Koscheck earned the first takedown to lead 2-1 after the first period. Kline earned a takedown after Koscheck's escape from the defensive position to trail 4-3. Kline earned his defensive-start escape in the third to tie the score at 4-4. After a scoreless sudden victory overtime. Kline won the toss and chose the defensive position. The Elkins, W.Va., native earned the escape in the 0:30 second-overtime to earn the 5-4 double overtime win.
WVU chose to start senior 184-reserve Phil Eliya at the 184 spot against Edinboro's Bryan Mahar. Mahar earned a quick escape and a takedown in the third period to lead 4-2. Despite Mahar illegally locking his hands, Eliya earned a two-point reversal at the end of regulation. After the penalty for locked hands was awarded to Eliya and a point for riding-time was added to Mahar, the match went into overtime at 5-5. Eliya scored a takedown and almost got Mahar in a fall-situation which would have put WVU in a position tie the match. Mahar rolled on his stomach to avoid the fall, but lost the match to Eliya, 7-5 in overtime.
All-American Vertus Jones, ranked third at 184, moved up to 197 to wrestle Edinboro's Dave Shunamon in the last bout of the evening. Jones scored the only takedown in the match in the first period. Each wrestler took some shots and earned his escape from the defensive start. Jones walked away with the win, 3-2.
"This was a good quality dual meet," said Coach Craig Turnbull. "It was an improvement from Pitt in that we won two of the close matches. But if one of those two losses was a win we would have tied and if both of them were wins we could have won. I thought we had the momentum in those losses too. Those matches were critical. But I can't take anything away from Edinboro. They are a talented team and were able to win those critical matches."
The Mountaineers will be back in action on Sunday as they host Ohio at 1 p.m, at the WVU Coliseum for senior day. It will be the last home match for three Mountaineer seniors (Chlebove, Eliya and Kline). It will also be the last match of the regular season. WVU will travel to Cleveland for the EWL tournament on March 5-6 and then to State College, Pa., for the NCAA championships on March 18-20.
HWT #19 A.J. Johnson (E) dec. #15 Sean Hage (W), 4-2 sv
125 Jason Gabrielson (E) dec. Angelo Zegarelli (W), 8-6 sv
133 Patrick Howard (E) dec. Ibin Lateef (W), 11-4
141 #9 Whitey Chlebove (W) maj. dec. Rafael Vega (E), 11-2
149 #14 Ryan Shapert (E) dec. Joe Carr (W), 4-3
157 Shaun Shapert (E) dec. Tom McMath (W), 6-0
165 #8 Mark Samples (E) maj. dec. Richard Taylor (W), 18-5
174 #10 Sam Kline (W) dec. #12 Josh Koscheck (E), 5-4 2OT
184 Phil Eliya (W) dec. Bryan Mahar (E), 7-5 sv
197 (#3 at 184) Vertus Jones (W) dec. Dave Shunamon (E), 3-2
WVU 6-4 overall, 5-2 EWL
Edinboro 10-3-1 overall, 6-0 EWL