The No. 6 NC State wrestling team stayed undefeated in duals on the season, defeating No. 12 Princeton in dominating fashion 29-12 in Reynolds Coliseum Saturday afternoon.
NC State lost only three bouts the entire match and collected extra points on numerous occasions, including a massive pin to start things off by No. 17 redshirt junior Daniel Bullard in the 174-pound class. No. 2 Redshirt junior Hayden Hidlay also had a key win against No. 5 Quincy Monday to highlight the match up.
“Finishing and closing matches and wrestling seven hard minutes is something we’ve been working toward,” said head coach Pat Popolizio. “The majority of the guys did that, some have been out of the lineup and working their way back in so we haven’t had a chance to be consistent, but it was good, seven minutes of hard-nosed wrestling.”
174: NC State started the afternoon with a bang. No. 17 Daniel Bullard was awarded a quick takedown, but then, used most of period one to fight for position, eventually pinning Princeton’s Kevin Parker to put NC State up 6-0.
“Coach told me to go out there and get aggressive,” Daniel Bullard said. “I knew I could get on his legs if I wanted to, so I needed to pull the trigger, get on top and go to work.”
184: One of the Pack’s most dominating wrestlers, No. 3 redshirt freshman Trent Hidlay, was on full display, dominating Princeton’s Travis Stefanik 18-6 with over two minutes of riding time. Trent Hidlay often let Stefanik escape after a takedown, especially early in the bout, to rack up points faster. The major decision put the Pack up 10-0 after just two bouts.
“That’s just his style, he’s aggressive, he puts points on the board,” Popolizio said. “You get in matches like that where the guy is someone you can score points on, you don’t want to keep it close and that’s what he did.”
197: The pace slowed down in the 197-pound bout as No. 8 redshirt junior Nick Reenan struggled to get anything going, collecting only a couple of escapes and falling 13-3. Princeton’s No. 3 Patrick Brucki was able to consistently put points up and collect over two minutes of riding time on Reenan. Reenan, who has recently come back from injury, is still trying to find his groove. Princeton got four team points on the board.
285: At heavyweight, sophomore Deonte Wilson had one of his more impressive bouts of the year, winning 6-1 with riding time and a huge second-period slam to get the momentum. Princeton’s Aidan Conner spent most of the match trying to get off the mat. NC State extended its lead to 13-4.
125: It was a scrappy first period for both sides as redshirt junior Tommy Cox kept it close with No. 3 Patrick Glory from Princeton. Eventually, Glory found his groove and ran away with a 17-2 major decision, setting the dual up for a huge finish.
133: In the second of only two unranked matchups, NC State’s redshirt freshman Jarrett Trombley and Princeton’s Ty Agaisse went scoreless into the third period until Trombley was awarded an escape. Agaisse almost took down Trombley in the final 20 seconds but the NC State wrestler slithered out of his grasp and won 1-0. NC State got a much-needed win that made it 16-9.
141: No. 15 redshirt junior Tariq Wilson showed out against Princeton’s Marshall Keller, collecting a takedown, a 2-point near fall and almost 3 minutes of riding time in the first period. He took a 9-4 lead before Keller tried to get back in the match in the third period, but Wilson bounced right back with a four-point near fall to earn the major decision. The Wolfpack took a 20-9 lead.
149: The 149-pound bout ended about as quickly as it started as NC State’s redshirt freshman Matt Grippi slammed No. 15 Mike D’Angelo to the mat and D’Angelo was unable to keep wrestling. The Pack was awarded six forfeit points to take a 26-9 lead and clinch the dual with three bouts remaining.
157: The highest-ranked matchup of the day was between No. 2 Hayden Hidlay and No. 5 Quincy Monday, and it lived up to that. Hayden Hidlay got two points early in the first and collected over two minutes of riding time. Monday almost got a takedown in the second period but the Princeton challenge was unsuccessful. The wrestlers traded escapes in the second and third period to make it 3-1 in favor of NC State.
Hayden Hidlay was awarded a stall point and then took down Monday to win 7-2 and give NC State a 29-9 lead over the No. 12 team in the country.
165: In the final match of the night, No. 10 redshirt junior Thomas Bullard struggled with Princeton’s Grant Cuomo. They traded takedowns and escapes to the third period when Thomas Bullard tied things up with an escape but Princeton had riding time so he needed a takedown to win. Unfortunately, despite having position, Cuomo slipped out of his hands and held on for a 7-6 win.
NC State will continue its undefeated season next weekend on the road against Drexel and Hofstra on Jan. 17-18 before ACC play starts.