BEDEVILED: Duke wrestling spoils App State Senior Night, 25-17

BEDEVILED: Duke wrestling spoils App State Senior Night, 25-17
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It was standing room only at Varsity Gym for Duke’s visit to the High Country.

By David Rogers. February 8, 2018. BOONE, NC — After splitting victories in the first four matches (174, 184, 197, and HWT), the visiting Duke Blue Devils won four of the next six weight classes to leave Varsity Gym with a 25-17 win over host Appalachian State in a non-conference match.

Photographic images by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News

App State was behind 7-9 at the end of the first four wrestling tilts, then fell further behind when Duke grapplers prevailed in the 125 and 133 weight classes. At the 125s, Duke’s Thayer Atkins won a close, 4-2 decision over the Mountaineers’ De’Andre Swinson-Barr.  The Blue Devils’ Josh Finesilver followed that with an exciting 10-8 triumph over App State’s Codi Russell.

Those two losses left Appalachian at a 7-15 deficit in the team score, a daunting challenge for the middle weights to overcome if ASU was to capture the team title.

And they almost did it.  At 141 lbs., Appalachian’s Irvin Enriquez needed only 60 seconds to surprise Duke’s Jeremiah Reitz with a pin that garnered six team points to shrink the deficit to just 13-15.  Gavin Londoff was inspired by Enriquez’s quick work, dominating his Duke opponent at 149, Brandon Leynaud with a major decision (14-5) that catapulted Appalachian into the lead, 17-15, with two matches remaining.

Unfortunately, the Mountaineers suffered two technical falls at 157 and 165, Mitch Finesilver of Duke taking a 19-2 win against Angel Najar and Zach Finesilver making it a Finesilver family sweep with a 16-1 technical fall vs. the Mountaineers’ Laken Cook.

Speaking with Blowing Rock News afterwards, App State’s Enriquez said that the circumstances of his pin was “still a blur.”  He said, “I really don’t remember.  I just reacted.”

Appalachian head coach JohnMark Bentley admitted to reporters later, “We simply were not offensive enough. Duke was more offensive. They did a better job of attacking and deserved that win.”

Appalachian State has one more Southern Conference (SoCon) dual meet on the 2017-18 schedule, travelling to Charleston, SC to face The Citadel on February 18th before returning to Charleston two weeks later for the SoCon tournament.

“We need to attack. We need to be more offensive,” Bentley noted, in assessing his team’s prospects against The Citadel and in the conference championships.

Duke 25, App State 17

  • 174: Matt Finesilver (DU) def. Forrest Przybysz (APP), 15-1 maj. dec. (0-4)
  • 184: Alan Clothier (APP) d. Kaden Russell (DU), 16-5 maj. dec. (4-4)
  • 197: Randall Diabe (APP) def. Alec Schenk (DU), 8-3 dec. (7-4)
  • HWT: Jacob Kasper (DU) def. Cary Miller (APP), 17-1 tech. fall (7-9)
  • 125: Thayer Atkins (DU) def. De’Andre Swinson-Barr (APP), 4-2 dec. (7-12)
  • 133: Josh Finesilver (DU) def. Codi Russell (APP), 10-8 dec. (7-15)
  • 141: Irvin Enriquez (APP) def. Jeremiah Reitz (DU), fall, 1:00 (13-15)
  • 149: Gavin Londoff (APP) def. Brandon Leynaud (DU), 14-5 maj. dec. (17-15)
  • 157: Mitch Finesilver (DU) def. Angel Najar (APP), 19-2 tech. fall (17-20)
  • 165: Zach Finesilver (DU) def. Laken Cook (APP), 16-1 tech. fall (17-25)

About The Author

As Editor and Publisher of Blowing Rock News, David Rogers has chosen a second professional career instead of retirement. For more than 35 years, he served in the financial services industry, principally in institutional equity research. He grew up in the oilfields north of Bakersfield, California and was a high school English major and honors student. From an economically disadvantaged family background, he worked his way through college (on grounds crew and in dining hall, as well as advertising sales for college newspapers), attending Johnston College at the University of Redlands, Claremont McKenna College, and California State University, Bakersfield. Other jobs to pay for college included a Teamsters Union job in South Central Los Angeles, a roustabout in the central California oilfields, and moving sprinkler pipe and hoeing weeds in the cotton fields west of Bakersfield. Rogers' financial services industry career took him from Bakersfield to La Jolla and San Diego, then to Chicago, New York City, San Francisco, Newport Beach and Charlotte before arriving in the High Country in 2000 to take a volunteer position coaching the rugby team at Appalachian State University and write independent stock market research. He spent three years as a senior financial writer for a global financial PR firm with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Shanghai, Beijing, Tel Aviv, and Frankfort (Germany). Rogers is the author of "The 90% Solution: Higher Returns, Less Risk" (2006, John Wiley & Co., New York). He is married to wife Kim (Jenkins Realtors), and shares in the joy provided by her three grown children and five grandchildren.

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