By: Christian Frazier
January 25 was an unforgettable night in the Schottenstein Center, as two heavyweight programs battled it out. Number two Ohio State took on visiting number six Michigan as both of these teams looked to stay undefeated and inch one step closer to capturing a Big Ten title.
The night started out at 125 pounds where Drew Mattin dominated Malik Hinselman 12-6 giving Michigan the 3-0 lead. Next, it was Stevan Micic proving why he is the top-ranked wrestler at 133 by majoring Luke Pletcher 14-1 boosting the Wolverines to a 7-0 match score overall. Senior Joey Mckenna fought hard and secured a technical fall (18-3) over Michigan’s Kanen Storr, bringing the Buckeyes back into a meet that was being controlled by Michigan early. The Buckeyes would continue to go on the offensive as redshirt-senior Micah Jordan majored Michigan’s Malik Amine 17-4 and would see the Buckeyes capture their first lead of the night going ahead 9-7 after four.
Alec Pantaleo of Michigan upset the Buckeyes Ke-Shawn Hayes by winning 3-2, a win that took much of the Schottenstein Center by surprise. Junior Logan Massa was unable to capture bonus points at 165 over unranked freshman Kaleb Romero. Romero scored only two points and was able to put up a fight keeping it close.
174 saw no break in the action as Myles Amine brother of Malik Amine was almost knocked off by Ethan Smith, a redshirt-freshman for the Buckeyes. Smith took an early 1-0 lead and was able to carry his momentum into the third period. However, Myles Amine was out quick with an escape for a level match, getting an attack of his own securing a takedown with under a minute left making the match 3-1. Smith got an escape with 15 seconds left on the clock, but it resulted in nothing. Myles Amine won the match 3-2 giving the Wolverines a 16-9 lead.
The Buckeyes fought back with two of their own veterans beating Wolverine rookies in dominating fashion going ahead 17-16 heading into the heavyweight match.
The final match of the night had the Schottenstein Center on its feet for all seven minutes, two freshman going head to head deciding the fates of their teams. Mason Parris of Michigan won the match 6-3 over Chase Singletary after going down by one early on. However, this wouldn’t affect Parris too much as he fought back with consistent attacks which proved to be enough for Michigan to secure their ninth win of the season and fifth win in conference.
The Wolverines will look to remain undefeated as they travel to Penn State February 1. The dual is scheduled for a 7:00 pm start time and can be watched live on FloWrestling or Big Ten Network.