The Portland State Vikings wrestled an unusual two dual matches in the same day Saturday. The first match was home at the Peter Stott Center with Wyoming emerging victorious 24-19 over the Vikings. Then, just a few hours later, the Vikings traveled to Pacific University for their second dual meet of the day. Portland State bounced back against the Boxers, in a 20-15 win. The Vikings split the wins, 5-5, with both teams as head coach Marlin Grahn had predicted earlier last week.
Portland State started out knowing they had to give up an automatic six points at 149 pounds. The Vikings couldn’t fill the empty weight class after freshman Danny Harless quit the team. Knowing this, the Vikings got off to a slow start winning only one of the first six matches. Trailing 24-6, Portland State rallied back, winning its final four matches of the afternoon. Unfortunately, the one win by major decision and the three decisions were not enough to give PSU the win. The PSU forfeit therefore made the difference for the Cowboys, who left with only a five point win.
Among the late winners was Junior Shawn Keinonen. Keinonen won the major decision at 165 pounds. Senior Jeremy Wilson had a close match at 184 pounds, squeaking out a 3-2 win. Wilson scored a takedown with five seconds left to give him the two-point win.
“Jeremy hasn’t been feeling well and wrestled with low energy,” Grahn explained. “The other kid just came out and wrestled him hard.”
Sophomore Casey Kotter got the early win for the Vikings with a pin at 125 pounds. Kotter’s pin gave the Vikings their only lead at 6-4.
Portland State was thirsty for a win after losing to Wyoming earlier in the afternoon as the squad headed to Pacific University. The Division III school has fallen short all year to Division I schools and would again to PSU 20-15.
Mere hours after the home loss to the Cowboys, the Vikings stepped on to the mat with the Boxers at 7 p.m. at Pacific. Portland State again fell behind early, dropping its first three matches. However, the matches at 125 pounds and 133 pounds were close. Kotter lost 3-2 against senior Kahaa Rezantes and sophomore Zac Enoch lost in overtime 5-3.
With PSU down 9-0, senior Stuart Eggerston gave the Viks their first points of the night with a major decision at 141 pounds. Eggerston had been out with a bad back but decided to return, not giving Pacific an easy forfeit.
“We actually made the decision out there on the mat,” Grahn said of Eggerston’s return.
Sophomore Casey Banks (149 pounds) and Junior Eric Arbogast (157 pounds) rallied behind Eggerston to give the Vikings two more wins.
Junior Quinn Collett added six more for PSU with a pin at 174 pounds and Wilson added another win to his record with a decision at 184 pounds. Wilson, first in the Pac-10, is undefeated in 18 dual matches and is 27-3 overall.
The Vikings will take the next week off before hosting Cal State Bakersfield Thursday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. in the Stott Center.