Mavericks can’t come up with late pin in loss to Grand Canyon

Mavericks can't come up with late pin in loss to Grand Canyon

Mesa State’s Tyler Nelson, left, works against Grand Canyon’s Madison Gambrell on Friday night during the 125-pound match at Brownson Arena. Nelson won the bout with a 4-3 decision, but the Mavericks lost the dual 20-18 to the Lopes.

Trevor Stapp found himself in a familiar pressure situation.

The Mesa State College heavyweight wrestler walked on to the mat for his match Friday night needing a pin to lift the Mavericks to a dual victory, but this time he had to pin a long-time rival.

“Coach told me go wrestle my match first, then worry about the team score,” Stapp said. “I’ve never pinned him before and he’s never pinned me, either.”

Stapp was able to score a takedown and two escape points to defeat Grand Canyon (Ariz.) University’s Richard Hernandez 4-3, but it wasn’t enough for the Mavericks, who lost 20-18 in the RMAC dual at Brownson Arena.

“We had our chances,” Mesa State coach Chuck Pipher said. “I didn’t like our performance tonight. They were in better position (to score) than us.”

Neither Stapp nor Hernandez were able to score a point until the third period, when Stapp chose the down position and was able to escape for a 1-0 lead. Stapp scored a takedown, but Hernandez escaped and scored a takedown to even the match 3-3. Stapp was able to escape a Hernandez hold in the final seconds for the bittersweet victory.

“I was happy I got the win, but I wish I could’ve done more for the team,” Stapp said. “He wrestled smart. He was wrestling not to get pinned and get the team win.”

Mesa 197-pound junior Shane Miller gave Stapp a chance to win the match when he pinned Kevin Treftz one minute and 18 seconds into the second period.

Miller fell behind 4-1 in the first period and trailed 6-3 before he escaped a hold and scored a takedown to even the score. A few seconds later, he had Treftz in a cradle.

“I came out kind of slow,” Miller said. “I didn’t realize he was that quick. I finally took a shot in the second and it worked out for me (to get a pin).”

The 19th-ranked Lopes (10-6, 4-1 RMAC) put Mesa (2-4, 1-3 RMAC) in a 20-9 hole prior to Miller’s match with four consecutive wins.

Stephen Towne gave Grand Canyon the lead for good with a 7-3 upset of fifth-ranked Chase Walker at 157 pounds.

“We felt like we wrestled that match well, we just couldn’t score,” Pipher said. “We were forward, forward, forward, but you’ve got to find a way to win those matches, too.”

Seventh-ranked Victor Carrazo defeated Mesa State’s Cole Johnson 10-4, who was wrestling for the first time since injuring his shoulder three weeks ago. Daniel Garay defeated Andy Laiminger 7-3 in Laiminger’s first match back from a knee injury, for a 16-9 lead.

“Cole went out and battled,” Pipher said. “Andy hasn’t wrestled live much lately. We’ll assess his injury and see where he’s at.”

Grand Canyon’s Ryan Becerra nearly put the dual out of reach with a 10-2 win at 184.

Mesa State got off to a good start, winning two of the first four matches for a 9-7 lead.

Freshman Tyler Nelson won a 4-3 decision at 125 pounds and Tyler Juby pinned Daniel Rubio in 2:20 at 149.

“Tyler had a great match,” Pipher said. “Juby had a big match. He’s a big-time scorer for us.”

The Lopes’ seventh-ranked Todd Wilcox defeated Chris Rubalcaba 14-2 at 133 and Kyle Wilson won a key 8-7 decision at 141 pounds.


Grand Canyon 20,

Mesa State 18

UP NEXT: Chadron State at Mesa State, 7 p.m. tonight


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