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No. 18 Wrestling Splits First Two Matches at Virginia Duals

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The No. 18 Virginia wrestling team picked up a dominating win over Michigan and then threw a scare into No. 10 Oklahoma before going down in defeat Friday in the first day of competition at the Virginia Duals, hosted at the Hampton Coliseum in Hampton, Va.

UVa opened with a 23-10 victory over Michigan, marking Virginia's first win ever over the Wolverines. In the second match, the Cavaliers' late rally against Oklahoma fell short in a 21-13 defeat to the Sooners (7-0-1).

Virginia (8-2) moves into the consolation bracket and will wrestle No. 23 Old Dominion at 10 a.m. Saturday. The winner will advance to face the Edinboro-Virginia Tech winner, while the loser will be eliminated. The Cavaliers and Monarchs met last season in Norfolk, with the match coming down to sudden victory time in the final bout as ODU pulled out a 21-18 win.

Fourth-ranked Chris Henrich (Jr., Lansdale, Pa.) scored two wins on the day at 174 pounds, with both over formidable foes, as he pushed his record to 17-2 this year. Against Oklahoma, he racked up over four minutes of riding time in an 11-1 major decision over No. 8 Jeff James. He also coasted to a 6-1 win over Michigan's Justin Zeerip, who is ranked No. 20 in one national poll.

Mike Salopek (R-Fr., North Huntingdon, Pa.), ranked No. 19 nationally at 184 pounds, also picked up a pair of wins for the Cavaliers.

Brent Jones (Sr., Burke, Va.) had UVa's biggest win of the day, recording a quick pin of third-ranked Eric Lapotsky of Oklahoma at 197 pounds. The fall was the 40th of Jones' career as he continued to build on his school record. It also was UVa's fastest pin of the season.

UVa won seven of the 10 weight classes against Michigan (3-5). Kellon Balum (Sr., Herndon, Pa.) and Danny Gonsor (R-So., Cleveland, Ohio) each picked up major decisions. Balum won 13-3 over Michigan's Mark Boyer at 149, while Gonsor notched a 14-4 major decision over Dave Johnson at 157.

Despite the team score, the UVa-OU match was tight for most of the contest. The Sooners won by decision at the first six weight classes, with four of the wins coming by three points or fewer, to grab an 18-0 lead before UVa mounted a comeback. Henrich picked up UVa's first four points with his major decision over James at 174 and Salopek followed with a 3-1 decision against Oklahoma's Erich Schmidtke at 184. Jones then pinned Lapotsky in just 15 seconds to pull UVa within 18-13, but No. 12 Nathan Fernandez ended any thoughts of a UVa upset with an 8-2 decision over UVa's Jack Danilkowicz (R-Jr., Green Oaks, Ill.) in the heavyweight class.

No. 18 Virginia 23, Michigan 10
125: Ross Gitomer (Virginia) dec. Sean Boyle (Michigan), 4-2; UVa 3-0
133: Zac Stevens (Michigan) major dec. Matt Cubillos (Virginia), 12-4; U-M, 4-3
141: Derek Valenti (Virginia) dec. Mark Weber (Michigan), 5-0; UVa 6-4
149: Kellon Balum (Virginia) major dec. Mark Boyer (Michigan), 13-3; UVa 10-4
157: No. 18 Danny Gonsor (Virginia) major dec. Dave Johnson (Michigan), 14-3; UVa 14-4
165: Aaron Hynes (Michigan) dec. Michael Chaires (Virginia), 4-3; UVa 14-7
174: No. 4 Chris Henrich (Virginia) dec. Justin Zeerip (Michigan), 6-1; UVa 17-7
184: No. 19 Mike Salopek (Virginia) dec. Erich Smith (Michigan), 8-5; UVa 20-7
197: No. 9 Anthony Biondo (Michigan) dec. No. 16 Brent Jones (Virginia), 7-4; UVa 20-10
285: Jack Danilkowicz (Virginia) dec. Ben Apland (Michigan), 5-2; UVa 23-10

No. 10 Oklahoma 21, No. 18 Virginia 13
125: No. 13 Jarrod Patterson (Oklahoma) dec. Ross Gitomer (Virginia), 2-1; UVa 0, OU 3
133: Kendric Maple dec. Matt Snyder (Virginia), 7-0; UVa 0, OU 6
141: No. 5 Zack Bailey (Oklahoma) dec. Derek Valenti (Virginia), 3-1; UVa 0, OU 9
149: No. 4 Kyle Terry (Oklahoma) dec. Kellon Balum (Virginia), 6-1; UVa 0, OU 12
157: No. 11 Shane Vernon (Oklahoma) dec. No. 18 Danny Gonsor (Virginia), 7-5 SV; UVa 0, OU 15
165: No. 16 Tyler Caldwell (Oklahoma) dec. Beau Fisher (Virginia), 4-1; UVa 0, OU 18
174: No. 4 Chris Henrich (Virginia) major dec. No. 8 Jeff James (Oklahoma), 11-1, UVa 4, OU 18
184: No. 19 Mike Salopek (Virginia) dec. Erich Schmidtke, 3-1; UVa 7, OU 18
197: No. 16 Brent Jones (Virginia) pinned No. 3 Eric Lapotsky (Oklahoma), 0:15; UVa 13, OU 18
285: No. 12 Nathan Fernandez (Oklahoma) dec. Jack Danilkowicz (Virginia), 8-2; UVa 13, OU 21
*rankings according to InterMat




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Jeff White

Director of News Content

A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.

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