Thursday, November 14, 2013

Notre Dame College-Ohio State wrestling preview

Notre Dame College coach Frank Romano shows no resistance when asked to identify teams unwilling to wrestle the Falcons.

"It should be out in the open," Romano said last week. "This has been going on for years."

Start pounding the bleachers. Here's a list of teams Romano has unsuccessfully tried adding to his schedule: Cleveland State, John Carroll, Baldwin Wallace, Findlay, Tiffin, Pitt-Johnstown, West Liberty, Wheeling Jesuit and Mount Union.

Still, one prominent Ohio program isn't afraid to stage a high-risk, low-reward match against NDC. The Falcons, the preseason No. 1 in Division II,  face Ohio State, the ninth-ranked Division I, team, at 7 p.m. Friday in Columbus. Ohio State, by the way, is Romano's alma mater. Romano was a three-time NCAA qualifier for the Buckeyes.

NDC should push Ohio State at multiple weights.

Five 2013 Division II All-Americans -- Marty Carlson, Maurice Miller, Joey Davis, Brandon Johnson and Orlando Scales -- are in NDC's lineup. Two-time Division I champion Logan Stieber is the centerpiece of the Buckeyes' lineup. Davis has a 41-0 career record. Stieber is 65-5.

The future is promising for both programs. Ohio State is redshirting some elite wrestlers, including four-time Ohio state champions Bo Jordan, Nathan Tomasello and Hunter Stieber. The Buckeyes should be stocked for NCAA titles runs beginning in 2015. NDC, which had the top-ranked recruiting class in Division II, is also redshirting some key wrestlers. The Falcons entered Division II last year and they quickly established themselves as one of the division's powers by finishing third in the nation last year. 

Ohio State holds a 3-0 lead in the all-time series. The schools haven't met since NDC joined Division II.

Here are probable lineups with the NDC wrestler listed first:

125: Brian Hauser, Jr., 4-3, vs. Nick Roberts, Fr., 11-2

133: Marty Carlson, Sr., 6-4, vs. Johnni DiJulius, So., 5-1

141: Maurice Miller, So., 2-1, vs. Logan Stieber, Jr, 0-0

149: Abel Avila, Jr., 0-0, vs. Ian Paddock, Sr., 7-3

157: Jonathan Rivera, So., 3-1, vs. Randy Languis, Jr., 5-1

165: Anthony Burge, So., 1-2, vs. Joe Grandominico, Jr., 3-4, or Craig Thomas, So., 2-4

174: Joey Davis, So., 10-0, vs. Mark Martin, So., 10-3

184: Charles Mason, So., 2-4, vs. Kenny Courts, So., 8-1

197: Brandon Johnson, Jr., 7-3, vs. Nick Heflin, Sr., 5-0

285: Orlando Scales, Sr., 5-1, vs. Nick Tavanello, Fr., 10-0

-- Guy Cipriano | @newsheraldguy


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