Battle in Jesse: Mizzou wrestling topples No. 6 Virginia Tech

Mizzou won six of 10 bouts to hang on to a 23-19 victory.

Missouri wrestling’s first marquee matchup came early this season.

In the second duel of the young season, No. 5 Mizzou beat No. 6 Virginia Tech in Jesse Auditorium on Sunday. This heavyweight bout between top 10 teams ended in a 23-19 victory.

It’s been a big week for Mizzou wrestling in terms of promotion. Coach Brian Smith served coffee in the Student Center on Monday, Nov. 14. Later that week, Missouri took over the Student Center for an open practice, giving fans an up-close and personal look at the team.

Then, the Tigers capped off their third-ever duel at the iconic Jesse Hall. A crowd of 1,479 packed in to watch the Mizzou victory.

The meet began with Mizzou’s Aaron Assad losing to two-time Atlantic Coast Conference champion Joey Dance, 8-4. The Tigers then ripped off five straight match victories, jumping to a 20-3 lead heading into match seven. The charge was lead by Jaydin Eierman, Zach Synon, Lavion Mayes, Joey Lavallee and Daniel Lewis.

Eierman, a redshirt freshman, dominated in his first dual of the year. The 133 pounder pinned freshman Dominic Latona in the first period at 2:55.

Redshirt Senior Zach Synon, a 141 pounder, defeated redshirt junior Dennis Gustafson in a 2-0 decision win.

The next match pitted two All-Americans: Lavion Mayes against Solomon Chishko. Mayes, a 149 pounder, took the victory 6-3 after a strong third period.

Redshirt junior Joey Lavallee defeated redshirt senior Sal Mastriani 15-5 by major decision.

During his freshman campaign, Daniel Lewis won the Mid-American Conference 165-lb championship and took fourth place at the NCAA Championship. Now a redshirt sophomore, Lewis was perfect against Virginia Tech, surrendering not a single point. Lewis won 13-0 over junior Mike Ciavarro.

Virginia Tech inched back with consecutive victories. Zach Epperly, a 174-pounder, defeated Dylan Wisman by fall at 4:53. Then Zach Zavatsky, a 184-pounder, defeated Willie Miklus after Miklus was unable to finish due to an injury.

Senior J’den Cox clinched the dual for the Tigers. Cox defeated redshirt junior Jared Haught 2-0, and then redshirt freshman Austin Myers fell to two-time All-American Ty Walz, 18-6 to end the dual.

Mizzou’s top-tier competition continues in the coming weeks. Mizzou is in the Northern Iowa Open on Dec. 3 and then faces No. 4 Ohio State on Dec. 8.

Edited by Peter Baugh | pbaugh@themaneater.com

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