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Tommy Askey
Tommy Askey won his matchup by major decision.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

Appalachian State Wrestling Falls to 13th Ranked Virginia Tech

Moving forward from a ranked victory against North Carolina and a shutout of Duke, No. 25 App State Wrestling opened Friday’s dual with two more individual wins against an ACC opponent, but No. 13 Virginia Tech prevailed 28-10 at Cassell Coliseum.

App State (2-2) started strongly against the Hokies, who have been ranked as highly as No. 5 in the NWCA Coaches Poll this season, as the Mountaineers built a 7-0 lead thanks to Tommy Askey’s 10-2 major decision against Clayton Ulrey at 157 pounds and Will Miller’s 5-2 decision against Ty Finn at 165.

After five straight wins from Virginia Tech (4-3), App State cut its deficit to 18-10 following an 8-2 decision from Ethan Oakley, who had one takedown apiece in the second and third periods against Logan Frazier at 133, but the Hokies won the final two matches.

Askey recorded a takedown late in the first period, then secured a bonus point against Ulrey for the second straight year by posting two more takedowns in the final 45 seconds.

Miller needed less than 15 seconds to earn a takedown in the next match, and a strong ride enabled him to build his riding time to 2:18 by the end of the second period.

The Hokies’ roster has a ranked wrestler at all 10 weights, highlighted by top-10 rankings from five wrestlers, although Virginia Tech’s lineup was missing three ranked standouts Friday night.

The Hokies’ run of five straight victories began with No. 2 Mekhi Lewis, a three-time All-American who won a national title in 2019, using a late takedown to collect a bonus point in a 10-2 major decision against Luke Uliano at 174.

TJ Stewart won a 7-3 decision against Tomas Brooker at 184, No. 23 Andy Smith won an 18-5 major decision against Carson Floyd at 197 and No. 20 Hunter Catka claimed an 11-2 major decision against Jacob Sartorio in the heavyweight matchup.

Chad Bellis hung tough and kept firing off shots in an attempt to record a go-ahead takedown late in a 4-2 loss to No. 8 Cooper Flynn, who had a first-period takedown in the 125 showdown. After Oakley’s victory, No. 15 Tom Crook won a 14-4 major decision against Riley Edwards at 141 to set up the only ranked showdown of the night in the dual finale.

No. 2 Caleb Henson from Virginia Tech won by fall against No. 24 Cody Bond at 149.

App State returns to action next Sunday with a Varsity Gym doubleheader against The Citadel (2 p.m. for the SoCon opener) and Greensboro College (3:30 p.m.).

No. 13 Virginia Tech 28, No. 25 App State 10
157: #21 Tommy Askey (APP) def. Clayton Ulrey (VT), 10-2 maj. dec.
165: #21 Will Miller (APP) def. Ty Finn (VT), 5-2 dec.
174: #2 Mekhi Lewis (VT) def. Luke Uliano (APP), 10-2 maj. dec.
184: TJ Stewart (VT) def. Tomas Brooker (APP), 7-3 dec.
197: #23 Andy Smith (VT) def. Carson Floyd (APP), 18-5 maj. dec.
HWT: #20 Hunter Catka (VT) def. Jacob Sartorio (APP), 11-2 maj. dec.
125: #8 Cooper Flynn (VT) def. Chad Bellis (APP), 4-2 dec.
133: #24 Ethan Oakley (APP) def. Logan Frazier (VT), 8-2 dec.
141: #15 Tom Crook (VT) def. Riley Edwards (APP), 14-4 maj. dec.
149: #2 Caleb Henson (VT) def. #24 Cody Bond (APP), fall (2:51)