Fast start helps Mavs defeat rival Western St.

The Colorado Mesa University wrestling team stole a couple of early matches and held on to defeat rival Western State Colorado.

The No. 17 Mavericks defeated the Mountaineers 22-16 in a non-RMAC dual Thursday night at Paul Wright Gym in Gunnison.

Mesa (4-0) claimed the momentum early, winning the first two matches in 3-2 decisions.

Mesa 125-pound freshman Jonathon Stelling defeated returning national qualifier Dustin Stiegemeyer 3-2.

“Stelling wrestled well,” CMU coach Chuck Pipher said. “That was a big surprise. He took (Stiegemeyer) down toward the end and held on.”

Tyler Nelson survived for a 3-2 victory in his first match of the season. The 133-pound junior was coming off a minor knee injury.

Mesa’s Drew Schumann was leading Cody Cole in the 141-pound match, but Cole scored with 30 seconds left for a 4-2 victory. Mesa 149-pounder Justin Schumacher won a 10-2 decision.

Jon Gappmaier, who is ranked eighth in the nation at 157 pounds, pinned Austin Harris in 6:52. Chester Granard, ranked seventh at 165, won a 5-2 decision.

Western State’s Elliot Copeland, ranked second at 174 pounds, defeated Chuck Lueth 17-7. The Mountaineers’ Kyle Piatt, an Olathe High graduate, pinned seventh-ranked Nick Petersen in the third period at 184 pounds.

Piatt’s win cut Mesa’s lead to 19-13 with two matches remaining, but Zak Slotten sealed the victory with a 3-2 tiebreaker victory over Samuel Mangum at 197 pounds.

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