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ATHENS, Ohio -- The Ohio wrestling team (2-3, 0-1 MAC) has two matches on tap this weekend, hosting Mid-American Conference rival Kent State (6-10, 1-2 MAC) on Friday (Jan. 18) at 7 p.m. ET in the annual Grudge Match at the Convocation Center, then traveling south to take on Atlantic Coast Conference foe Virginia (9-6) on Sunday (Jan. 20) in a 1 p.m. ET matchup at Memorial Gymnasium.
The Bobcats will continue to celebrate 100 years of wrestling at Ohio on Friday night, welcoming back MAC champions from the 1990s and 2000s. Friday is also Heroes Night at the Convo. The match between the Bobcats and the Golden Flashes will be streamed live on ESPN+ while Sunday's match pitting Ohio against the Cavaliers of Virginia will be streamed live on ACC Network Extra.
Ohio is 2-3 in dual meets so far in 2018-19 and is coming off a loss to No. 5-ranked Missouri last Friday (Jan. 11) at the Convo. The Bobcats came away victorious in the first three bouts but ultimately to the Tigers. Redshirt junior Shakur Laney (Canal Winchester, Ohio) got things going by coming away with a 3-1 sudden victory in overtime over redshirt freshman Dack Punke at 125 pounds. Laney earned an escape in the second period, then gave the Bobcats a 3-0 lead with his takedown in overtime. Ohio's lead grew to 9-0 when redshirt sophomore Mario Guillen (Perrysburg, Ohio) picked up six points for the Bobcats when he won via forfeit at 133. In his 2018-19 home debut, senior Cameron Kelly (Bellbrook, Ohio) added three more points to the Ohio total, with his second-period escape helping to propel him to a 2-0 win by decision over redshirt freshman Allan Hart at 141. Unfortunately for the Bobcats, the Tigers won the final seven bouts to lock down an 18-point victory.
As a team, the Bobcats continue to be ranked second in the MAC with 20 points behind Missouri, which is ranked first with 30 points, according to the conference's January rankings. Individually, Laney is still holding down the top spot at 125 while Guillen is ranked second at 133, redshirt freshman Alec Hagan (Eureka, Mo.) is ranked second at 149, Carson is ranked second at 157, sophomore Aaron Naples (Brunswick, Ohio) is ranked third at 197, Kelly is ranked fourth at 141, freshman Colt Yinger (Nelsonville, Ohio) is ranked fourth at 165 and redshirt senior Zack Parker (Felton, Del.) is ranked fourth at heavyweight.
Several Bobcats enter the weekend ranked nationally in their respective weight classes. Laney is ranked 20th according to The Open Mat and 24th according to TrackWrestling. Guillen and Kelly are both ranked 19th at their respective weight classes by The Open Mat, and redshirt junior Zac Carson (Akron, Ohio) is ranked 19th at 157 according to FloWrestling and 20th according to both InterMat and TrackWrestling.
Ohio will be looking to avenge an 18-13 loss to Kent State in the last meeting between the two rivals on Jan. 19, 2018, at the Convo. The Bobcats' last win over the Golden Flashes came on Jan. 22, 2017 -- a 43-2 rout at the M.A.C. Center in Kent, Ohio. The series between Ohio and Kent State dates back to 1929. Kent State went 0-3 last weekend at the Virginia Duals in Hampton, Va., suffering a 30-10 conference loss to Old Dominion and a 21-15 setback to Chattanooga last Friday, then dropping a 26-15 decision to Lock Haven the following day. Kent State came in ranked eighth of eight teams in the MAC's January rankings. Three Golden Flashes are ranked in the top four in the conference in their respective weight classes, with fifth year Isaac Bast third at 165 and sophomores Dylan Barreiro (174) and Andrew McNally (184) each ranked fourth in their respective weight classes.
Ohio vs. Kent State Probable Lineups
125: Ohio R-Jr. Shakur Laney OR R-So. Trevor Giallombardo vs. Kent State So. Jake Ferri OR So. Tomas Gutierrez
133: Ohio R-So. Mario Guillen vs. Kent State Jr. Tim Rooney
141: Ohio Sr. Cameron Kelly vs. Kent State So. Cory Simpson
149: Ohio R-Fr. Alec Hagan vs. Kent State R-Fr. Kody Komara
157: Ohio R-Jr. Zac Carson vs. Kent State So. Richard Jackson
165: Ohio Fr. Colt Yinger vs. Kent State 5th Year Isaac Bast
174: Ohio R-Sr. Arsen Ashuygan vs. Kent State So. Dylan Barreiro
184: Ohio Jr. Hunter Yeargan vs. Kent State So. Andrew McNally
197: Ohio So. Aaron Naples OR Gr. Derek Hillman vs. Kent State Jr. Shane Mast
285: Ohio R-Sr. Zack Parker vs. Kent State R-Sr. Spencer Berthhold
Virginia enters this weekend having received votes in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association Division I Coaches Poll. The Cavaliers will visit in-state foe VMI on Friday before hosting Ohio on Sunday. Virginia finished 2-1 at the Virginia Duals last weekend, earning wins over Lock Haven (32-12) and Arizona State (23-16) before falling to Virginia Tech (37-5). The Cavaliers boast seven wrestlers ranked in the top 25 nationally in their respective weight classes -- junior Jack Mueller (No. 5) at 125, redshirt sophomore Louie Hayes (No. 23) at 133, redshirt junior Sam Krivus (No. 15/25) at 141, sophomore Jake Keating (No. 19/21) at 157, redshirt freshman Cam Coy (No. 23) at 165, redshirt senior Will Schany (No. 19) at 184 and redshirt sophomore Jay Aiello (No. 7/8/9/16) at 197.
Ohio at Virginia Probable Lineups
125: Ohio R-Jr. Shakur Laney OR R-So. Trevor Giallombardo vs. Virginia Jr. Jack Mueller
133: Ohio R-So. Mario Guillen vs. Virginia R-So. Louie Hayes
141: Ohio Sr. Cameron Kelly vs. Virginia R-Jr. Sam Krivus
149: Ohio R-Fr. Alec Hagan vs. Virginia R-So. Michael Murphy
157: Ohio R-Jr. Zac Carson vs. Virginia So. Jake Keating
165: Ohio Fr. Colt Yinger vs. Virginia R-Fr. Cam Coy
174: Ohio R-Sr. Arsen Ashuygan vs. Virginia Fr. Robert Patrick OR So. Drew Peck
184: Ohio Jr. Hunter Yeargan vs. Virginia R-Sr. Chance McClure
197: Ohio So. Aaron Naples OR Gr. Derek Hillman vs. Virginia R-So. Jay Aiello
285: Ohio R-Sr. Zack Parker vs. Virginia R-Jr. Tyler Love
Ohio will close out January with a MAC road match, visiting DeKalb, Ill., on Sunday, Jan. 27, for a 2 p.m. ET match against Northern Illinois.