EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – Five SIUE wrestling seniors competed in their final home meet of the season with the Cougars earning a split at the Vadalabene Center.
SIUE, 4-14, overpowered Lindenwood-Belleville 54-0 and then dropped a 29-6 match to Indiana.
"We saw a lot of the things we had been working on in practice," said SIUE Head Coach Jeremy Spates. "We're making progress and are working in the right direction."
SIUE senior Josh Wood said Saturday's home finale was emotional for the Cougars.
"For me and for every senior, I think it meant a lot," Wood said. "It's an emotional time knowing we won't be back in this same facility. That's why we came out, and we fought hard. We just couldn't get things going our way."
The seniors competing in their final home event were Wood, Deshoun White, Matt Lester, Logun Taylor and David Devine.
Wrestling in front of numerous SIUE wrestling alumni, including Hall of Fame Coach Larry Kristoff, SIUE was dominant against the Lynx of Lindenwood-Belleville with six pins. The winning score was as close as any SIUE team has ever finished since the 1982-83 team blanked Truman State (then Northeast Missouri State) 57-0 in a dual meet.
Dakota Leach, Patrick Myers, Brandon Brindley, Jake Vitale, White, and Devine all recorded first-period pins against the Lynx. Vitale, competing in his regular season home debut, would get his pin the fastest with a 47-second victory over Josh Eidson at 165 pounds.
Leach and Jake Residori were the lone double winners for the Cougars.
Leach, a 125-pounder, defeated Indiana's Alonzo Shepherd 5-1 to go along with his pin over Lindenwood-Belleville's Zach Zvonar in 2:33.
"Dakota is really wrestling well," Spates said.
Residori topped Indiana's Matt Irick 6-4 and took a 12-2 major decision over Lindenwood-Belleville's Zach Hausman at 174 pounds.
"It was nice for him to get back on track. He was in a bit of a slump," Spates said of Residori.
Six of the matches against Indiana were decided by four points or less.
"I thought we could have won a few more of those matches, but we wrestled hard," Spates said.
The Cougars now embark on a five-day road trip that includes five Southern Conference (SoCon) teams. All of the matches will take place in the state of North Carolina.
SIUE faces Gardner-Webb and Campbell Feb. 19th. On Feb. 22nd, the Cougars meet the Citadel and take on North Carolina in a nonconference event. On Feb. 23rd, SIUE closes out the regular season with matches against Davidson and Appalachian State.
"It's going to be a long, grueling trip," said Spates. "I think we want to go out and compete but stay healthy so we can be ready for the conference championships."
The SoCon Championships are set for Mar. 8 at Buies Creek, N.C.
SIUE 54 Lindenwood-Belleville 0
125 - Dakota Leach (SIUE) pinned Zach Zvonar (LB), 2:33
133 - Patrick Myers (SIUE) pinned Cooper Powell (LB), 1:52
141 - Brandon Brindley (SIUE) pinned Wardell Morgan (LB), 2:02
149 - Karsten Van Velsor (SIUE) def. David Diaz (LB), 8-5
157 - Logun Taylor (SIUE) wins by forfeit
165 - Jake Vitale (SIUE) pinned Josh Eidson (LB), 0:47
174 - Jake Residori (SIUE) def. Zach Hausman (LB), 12-2
184 - Deshoun White (SIUE) pinned Denton Eickelschulte (LB), 2:57
197 - Josh Wood (SIUE) won by technical fall over Karlo Hinjosa (LB), 17-0 (3:00)
285 - David Devine (SIUE) pinned Darius Lewis (LB), 1:19
Indiana 29 SIUE 6
125 - Dakota Leach (SIUE) def. Alonzo Shepherd (IU), 5-1
133 - Joe Duca (IU) def. Patrick Myers (SIUE), 5-2
141 - Trevor Moody (IU) pinned John Petrov (SIUE), 4:59
149 - Eric Roach (IU) won by technical fall over Karsten Van Velsor (SIUE), 20-4 (4:40)
157 - Alex Gregory (IU) def. Logun Taylor (SIUE), 10-3
165 - Ryan LeBlanc (IU) def. Matt Lester (SIUE), 6-4
174 - Jake Residori (SIUE) def. Matt Irick (IU), 6-4
184 - Luke Sheridan (IU) def. Deshoun White (SIUE), 4-0
197 - Cheney Dale (IU) def. Josh Wood (SIUE), 3-2
285 - Adam Chalfant (IU) def. David Devine (SIUE), 8-2
Indiana 39 Lindenwood-Belleville 12
125 - Alonzo Shepherd (IU) pinned Zach Zvonar (LB), 1:23
133 - Chris Caton (IU) won by injury default over Jesse Martinelli (LB), 3:09
141 - Trevor Moody (IU) won by technical fall over Wardell Morgan (LB), 16-0 (4:58)
149 - Eric Roach (IU) won by technical fall over David Diaz (LB), 15-0 (4:07)
157 - Alex Gregory (IU) won by forfeit
165 - Ryan LeBlanc (IU) won by technical fall over Josh Eidson (LB), 21-4 (4:45)
174 - Matt Irick (IU) dec. Zach Hausman (LB), 9-3
184 - Denton Eickelschulte (LB) won by injury default over Preston Keiffer (IU), 0:01
197 - TJ Hohenadel (IU) def. Karlo Hinjosa (LB), 8-5
285 - Darius Lewis (LB) won by forfeit