North Idaho College went for the quick kill in Thursday night’s non-league dual wrestling match with Northern Montana College.
The Cardinals parlayed five pins into a 52-3 drubbing of the Lights at Christianson Gymnasium.
Eighteen forfeit points padded NIC’s 30th consecutive dual victory as the Cardinals hiked their 1994-95 record to 10-0.
NMC, ranked No. 8 in the NAIA poll largely because of its reputation, fell to 1-3.
NIC, No. 2 in the NJCAA poll, travels to Burnaby, British Columbia, for a dual tonight with Simon Fraser University, another NAIA power.
“We wanted to go for the fall so we can get off the mat quicker,” Cardinals sophomore Scott Surplus said.
And Surplus recorded one of those pins, timed at 6:07, against the Lights’ two-time All-American Dan DeKaye at 177 pounds.
Surplus and DeKaye wrestled to a 2-2 standstill after two periods.
“I was just mainly trying to get back into shape,” Surplus said. “I have real flexible shoulders. He went to throw a power-half, and I just locked his head in.”
“(DeKaye) would have won with one point of riding time if he’d have let it go into sudden death (overtime),” NMC coach David Ray said. “He’s a two-time All-American. (Being pinned) can happen to anybody. That’s the first time he’s been pinned in college, but he’s learned now.”
“(DeKaye) didn’t turn (Surplus) loose and paid the consequences,” NIC coach John Owen said. “It’s a (leg ride counter) move we work on in practice. We executed a Banack and pinned.”
Surplus’ fall was the fifth straight for the Cardinals, who hadn’t wrestled since Dec. 16.
Freshmen Chad Edgar at 134 and Bob Presta at 142 answered the Lights’ sole victory, a 6-0 decision for All-American Albert LaLonde over Matt Paulson at 126 pounds.
Edgar led 5-0 after the first period and cradled Mitch Overlie into a pin in 4:13.
Presta, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee a month ago, started tentatively against Mika Gibson, but rolled through for the pin in 4:05.
Returning NIC 150-pound All-American Rick Moreno’s 42-second fall came via the head and arm over Jason Hertz.
Freshman Seth Kernodle shook from a 2-2 deadlock to pin NMC sophomore Jason Knight in 3:43 at 167.
“Some of the guys say their legs felt dead,” Owen said. “Since we got back (from the holiday break) we’ve been going two-a-days, running stairs. We’re a couple weeks away from being where I want them to wrestle.”
“I like things about (the Cardinals’) technique, movement and they hit some things,” Ray said. “I like how they look. They look strong. They didn’t hurt themselves, and they didn’t break.”
The Lights, NAIA national champions in 1991 and 1992, were without five starters who become eligible next week.
“We had them outmanned,” Owen said. “In a couple of weights, we’d go then we’d stop. You need to keep that steady pace.”
NIC 52, NMC 3
118 pounds - Hartzell (NIC) dec. Spangler 14-3. 126 - LaLonde (NMC) d. Paulson 6-0. 134 - Edgar (NIC) pinned Overlie 4:13. 142 - Presta (NIC) p. Gibson 4:05. 150 - Moreno (NIC) p. Hertz :42. 158 - Routh (NIC) won by forfeit. 167 - Kernodle (NIC) p. Knight 3:43. 177 - Surplus (NIC) p. DeKaye 6:07. 190 - Hughes (NIC) won by forfeit. Heavyweight - Rosen (NIC) won by forfeit.
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Back with my day-after post following Gonzaga’s 92-66 blowout over Portland on Thursday. My game story, as well as articles in the Oregonian and Portland Tribune. More below.