By Simon Kaufman, For the Daily
Published November 18, 2012
The Michigan wrestling team made the 2,000-plus mile trip to Palo Alto, Calif. for its meet against Stanford, but performed like it was right at home. The 16th-ranked Wolverines defeated the Cardinals in convincing fashion Sunday to cap off their West Coast trip.
Michigan earned a 26-6 victory by claiming eight of 10 matches, not dropping any team points until the eighth match. Coming out strong with takedowns early was one area that Michigan coach Joe McFarland wanted to concentrate on.
“I think we got the first take down in eight of those 10 (matches),” he said. “We’re really trying to get better start … and I thought we really did a good job of that today.”
Redshirt freshman Camryn Jackson led off the contest in the 141-pound weight class. He took advantage of three takedowns in the first period to cruise to a 16-6 win. His total time of 4:03 in riding-time advantage also helped Michigan earn a bonus point, putting them up 4-0.
Redshirt junior Eric Grajales and redshirt sophomore Jale Salazer kept the momentum going for the Wolverines. The 11th-ranked Grajales, competing in the 149-pound weight class, dominated in the final frame of his duel to secure a 13-6 win. Salazer, competing in the 157-pound weight class, didn’t score his first points until an escape in the second period. He quickly became more aggressive afterwards in the final two frames earning two takedowns before time expired with him carrying an 8-2 lead.
Freshman Taylor Massa and redshirt junior captain Dan Yates both rolled to victories at the 165-pound weight class and 174-pound weight class, respectively. Yates, ranked 14th, picked up five takedowns in his 18-5 decision to advance to 5-0 on the season.
At the 184-pound weight class, freshman Jordan Thomas used 2:31 in riding time to earn a 7-2 decision. Shortly after, redshirt junior Max Huntley, took advantage of two takedowns and a three-point tilt to beat his opponent 9-2 in the 197-pound weight class putting Michigan up 23-0.
Desperate for points, the Cardinals managed to take two of the final three duals. Redshirt junior Sean Boyle picked up the eighth match victory of the night for Michigan at the 125-pound weight class. Boyle’s opponent, Evan Silver, was a former high school teammate of Boyle’s at Blair Academy in Blairstown, N.J.
“We both knew each other’s styles pretty well, and, you know, both of us knew what we were going to do,” said Boyle.
Even with Silver’s familiarity with Boyle’s style, the Michigan wrestler was able to capitalize on three takedowns and an escape to serve his former teammate his first dual loss of the season in a 7-2 decision.
“I thought I wrestled pretty well individually,” Boyle said. “I had a really strong first period where I was able to my leg attacks right away and (I) scored two takedowns.”
Despite the victory on the scoreboard, Coach McFarland wasn’t content.
“We wanted to dominate,” McFarland said. “We wanted to win all ten, so we didn’t reach our goal. …But I thought the guys did a really good job all in all, you know, just getting out there and dominating in matches.”
Michigan does not compete again until the end of the month when the Wolverines will travel to Las Vegas for the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational.
Boyle is confident in his team’s ability going forward.
“(We just have to) keep doing exactly what were doing and what the coaches are preaching — just working hard,” he said.