By: Juan Herrera
After stumbling against Rider in the first match of their double-header on Sunday, the Maryland wrestling team was able to bounce back against Ohio with a 33-14 win on the team’s senior day.
The Terps got off to a hot start against Ohio in the first match of the dual meet.
Maryland redshirt freshman Brandon Cray picked up a second period pinfall victory over Ohio’s Trevor Giallombardo at the 125-pound class.
“That’s my job, to start the team off right,” Cray said. “I just try to start the team off right.”
Unfortunately for the Terps, that momentum did not last long. Ohio’s No. 16 Cameron Kelly dominated Jhared Simmons for a technical fall victory at the 133-pound class.
Then at 141, Maryland ran into more trouble after Ryan Diehl had to give up his match against Ohio’s Mario Guillen after being slammed on his neck during a scramble. Ohio took an 11-6 lead after the injury default.
Fortunately for the Terps, redshirt junior Alfred Bannister was able to turn the tide of the meet after his quick pinfall victory over Ohio’s Kade Kowalski. The Maryland wrestler dominated his opponent for his team-leading, ninth pinfall victory of the season.
At 157, redshirt senior Justin Alexander picked up a pin of his own against Ohio’s Cullen Cummings after a huge throw near the outside of the mat. It was the Terp wrestler’s second pinfall victory of the season in his last ever match at College Park.
“Getting that last pin just means the world to me,”Alexander said. “It felt great.”
After redshirt sophomore Brendan Burnham picked up a narrow 8-7 win over Ohio’s Joe Terry at 165, the Terps were able to keep the pins coming.
At 174-pounds, redshirt junior Patrick Gerish made quick work of Ohio’s Matt McFarland. The Maryland wrestler earned a takedown in the first period and was able to turn McFarland on his back for the pin. It was the fourth pin of the day for the Terps.
After Ohio’s Hunter Yeargan beat Maryland’s Niko Cappello 3-0 in a tight match, redshirt sophomore David-Brian Whisler pulled out a win over Ohio’s Aaron Naples.
The two wrestlers traded takedowns throughout the match, but Whisler was able to seal the deal with a late takedown in the third period to win 11-7.
Then in the final bout of the match, Maryland heavyweight No. 6 Youssif Hemida picked up a narrow 4-3 win over Ohio’s Zach Parker. Although Hemida picked up an early takedown in the match, the Bobcats wrestler continued to escape from bottom. Hemida was able to hold on to win his 24th match of the season, after a late reversal in the third period.
With Hemida’s win, Maryland beat Ohio 33-14 on senior day. This win was also head coach Kerry McCoy’s 100th win as the head coach of the Maryland wrestling team.
“To get a 100 wins here at Maryland is pretty special because they’ve been great support for me and the program and the guys have been working hard,” McCoy said. “I told all the guys I wouldn’t be able to do it without them, so it’s pretty special to finish the year with a win like that.”The Terps will have about two weeks to prepare for the 2018 Big Ten Wrestling Championships. The tournament will be held at the Breslin Student Events Center from March 3-4 in East Lansing, Michigan.