UTC 29, APPALACHIAN STATE 9
(Meet started at 125 pounds)
125 -- Nick Soto (C) dec. Dominic Parisi, 10-2; 133 -- Brett Boston (A) pinned Marvin Lopez, 0:46; 141 -- Dean Pavlou (C) major dec. Chris Johnson, 13-4; 149 -- Alex Hudson (C) dec. Zach Kechter, 4-0; 157 -- Trey Stavrum (C) dec. Aaron Scott, 5-0; 165 -- Josh Condon (C) pinned Zack Strickland, 5:55; 174 -- Sean Mappes (C) dec. Colin Hedash, 7-2; 184 -- Jake Johnson (A) dec. Robert Prigmore, 7-6 OT; 197 -- Niko Brown (C) dec. Paul Weiss, 4-0; 285 -- Kevin Malone (C) dec. Joe Cummings, 5-0.
Records" UTC 7-6, 3-0; Appalachian 6-5, 3-2.
The Southern Conference may be spread out geographically, specifically for its wrestling teams, but there is something about the open road that agrees greatly with the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
The Mocs extended their league road win streak to 21 Sunday, rolling to a 29-9 victory at Appalachian State following a Friday win at Gardner-Webb.
"As a whole, it is our best performance," Mocs coach Heath Eslinger. "Being on the road has been good, but we're ready to be home."
The Mocs, whose only remaining SoCon road trip will be the league tournament at Lexington, Va., last lost on the road on Feb. 14, 2004 at The Citadel (27-13). They have home meets remaining with Davidson (Sunday), VMI and SIU-Edwardsville (Feb. 23) and Campbell (Feb. 25).
UTC, in its last two meets, has won 17 of 20 matches.
Nick Soto, the Mocs' 125-pounder, who entered the weekend ranked 16th in the national coaches poll, slapped a major decision on Dominic Parisi, who was ranked 19th in the same poll. Sean Mappes, the freshman who stepped into the gap at 174 when Jake Young was removed from the starting lineup, decisioned Colin Hedash 7-2. Senior Jos Condon bested Appalachian's Zack Strickland, pinning him in 5:55.
"Soto beat a good kid. Mappes beat the best kid in the conference at his weight and Condon wrestled a great match," Eslinger said.
Soto also beat Parisi on his way to the Hokie Open championship, also by a major decision.
"Mappes is doing a good job of laying claim to that opportunity. He sure didn't hurt his changes," Eslinger said. "And Condon's pin -- that kid beat him 9-1 at the Scuffle. Josh went out and wrestled a great match."
On the surface, it appeared that Niko Brown, the winningest Moc with a 23-3 record, struggled on his way to a 4-0 victory over Paul Weiss.
"It was no struggle, really," Eslinger said. "They tried everything to keep it close but Niko controlled every scenario of his match."
A senior, Brown is now 11-0 in dual meets.
The win moved Eslinger to 41-28 and within two victories of Mark Leen, who stands fourth on UTC coaches' all-times win list.
Ward Gossett is an assistant sports editor and writer for the Times Free Press. Ward has a long history in Chattanooga journalism. He actually wrote a bylined story for the Chattanooga News-Free Press as a third-grader. He Began working part-time there in 1968 and was hired full time in 1970. Ward now covers high school athletics, primarily football, wrestling and baseball and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling. Over a 40-year career, he has covered ...