Nov. 30, 2012
2012 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational - Thru Quarterfinals
LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Anchored by quarterfinalists Mathew Miller (Edgewood, Va.) and Peyton Walsh (Glen Allen, Va.), the Navy wrestling team stands 20th (tied with Kent State) out of 32 teams on the opening day of the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. Navy brought 10 wrestlers, one to represent each weight class, and with the quarterfinal round, as well as the second and third rounds of the consolation bracket due to begin at 10:00 pm Eastern on Friday, the Mids have six wrestlers still active in the competition.
Walsh, a sophomore who entered the competition with an 11-3 record at 165 pounds this season, earned a 3-1 victory over Kent State’s Caleb Marsh in his opening match before punching his ticket into the quarterfinals behind a 4-1 victory over sixth-seeded Austin Wilson of Nebraska. Walsh will face third-seeded and eighth-ranked Nick Sulzer of Virginia in Friday night’s quarterfinals.
Meanwhile, Miller returned to the mat after missing the Navy Classic two weeks ago because of the flu. Ranked 14th nationally, Miller has won both previous tournaments he has wrestled in this season, the Eastern Michigan Open and the Roadrunner Open, and came into the weekend with a flawless 9-0 mark at 174 pounds. Miller, seeded fourth in the competition, had a first-round bye, but dealt North Dakota State’s Kurtis Julson an 11-6 loss in the second round, as Miller will now meet fifth-seeded and 15th-ranked Todd Porter of Missouri in the quarters.
Navy also has four remaining wrestlers in the consolation bracket, including senior 157-pound Bobby Barnhisel (River Forest, Ill.) who toted a 13-0 record into the weekend with three tournament wins this season. Barnhisel, seeded fourth, scored a 3-0 win over Arizona State’s Codey Combs in his opening-round matchup, but suffered a 6-4 setback to Academy foe Gabe Martinez of Air Force. The Navy senior bounced back however and produced a 19-2 tech fall over Nicholas Moreno of North Idaho College. Barnhisel is due to meet West Virginia’s Jason Luster in his next match.
Senior Mason Bailey (Fairmont, W.Va.) also won his opening-round bout, dealing Michigan’s Jordan Thomas a 4-1 loss at 184 pounds. Bailey, however, dropped a 4-0 decision to 11th-ranked and fourth-seeded Jacob Swartz of Boise State in the following round. He came back to post an 11-0 major decision over South Dakota State’s Hunter Weddington and will meet Cal Poly’s Sean Dougherty in his next match.
Making the jump from 174 pounds just two weeks ago to 197 pounds is senior team captain Oscar Huntley (Stafford, Va.), who is 1-1 in the competition. Huntley was paired up with eighth-seeded and 19th-ranked Jackson Hein of Wisconsin in the opening match with Hein earning a 9-3 decision. Huntley came storming back in the wrestlebacks where he pinned Virginia’s Zch Nye in 2:03 and will now face Utah Valley’s David Prieto.
Finally, senior heavyweight Dan Miller (Berlin, Md.) will face North Dakota State’s Evan Knutson next as he tries to advance through the consolation bracket. Boise State’s J.T. Felix produced an 8-5 win over Miller in the day’s first match, but Miller came back to win two in a row. He posted a 3-1 win over Adam Fager of Utah Valley before holding Western Wyoming College’s Michael Williams scoreless in a 4-0 victory.
Navy continues to struggle in its lower weight classes, however, as 125-pound Sam Warne (Dent, Minn.), 133-pound Colton Rashe (Plano, Ill.), 141-pound Joe Locksmith (Kissimmee, Fla.) and 149-pound Zach Basich (Wheeling, W.Va.) lost each of their first two matches of the day.
Ohio State stands atop the leader board with eight wrestlers remaining in the competition, seven in the championship bracket, with 35.5 points, while Missouri is just four points back and his nine wrestlers who are still active. Oregon State is in third with 31.0 points, followed by Cornell in fourth with 28.0 points and Virginia in fifth with 26.5 points.
The Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational will resume Saturday at 12:00 pm Eastern with the fourth round of consolations, followed by the semifinals, consolation semis and consolation finals beginning at 1:00 pm and the championship finals at 6:00 pm
### Go Navy ###