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Air Force Wrestling Concludes 23rd-Annual All Academy Championships with 10 placers

01 Feb 2017

Air Force staff writer -Annapolis, MDDylan Hyder led the Falcons with a championship title in the 133 class at the 23rd-Annual All Academy Championships, hosted by the U.S. Naval Academy, Sunday evening, in Annapolis, Md. All 10 Falcons placed in the top-three of their respective weight classes en route to a third place team finish.
Air Force took the mats with determination in the quarter-finals round, winning all 10 opening bouts with six bonus point finishes. Drew Romero, Jerry McGinty, Zen Ikehara and Kerry Powers logged a fall apiece in the opening round. Anthony McLaughlin registered his first technical fall of the season, while Tyler Wiederholt logged his first major decision.
The Falcons were met with more resistance in the semifinals round, winning only four of 10 bouts. Hyder picked up his first fall of the day over the Citadel's Andy Szalwinski to be the first Falcon to advance to the championship finals. Senior team captain McGinty followed suit with a 9-5 decision in the 149 class over Army’s Matt Kelly. McLaughlin posted a 7-6 decision over the Citadel’s Sawyer Root, while Powers registered a 7-0 decision over the Citadel’s Joe Bexley.
In Air Force’s only nationally ranked bouts of the day, John Twomey fell to No. 18 Jared Prince of Navy, while Alex Mossing dropped a 9-4 decision to No. 16 Russ Parsons of Army.
In the following consolation semi-finals round, the Falcons found their rhythm. Four of six Falcons earned bonus point victories over their opponents, while all six advanced to the third-place bout.

Romero registered his second bonus point win of the day with an 18-3 technical fall over the Coast Guard’s Earl Roberts. Ikehara followed suit with his second fall of the day over the Coast Guard Academy’s Dan Fiorvanti. Wiederholt and Billingsley earned a major decision apiece, while Twomey and Mossing earned decision wins.
In the following third-place round, the six aforementioned Falcons went six-for-six in wins to earn third place finishes. Billingsley led the way with a technical fall over the Coast Guard Academy’s Michael Palomba. Mossing registered bonus points for the team via a medical forfeit. Romero’s third place finish was one spot shy of his runner-up finish at last year’s All Academy Championships.
Air Force fought tight battles in the championship finals, winning only one of the four title matches. McGinty, a three-time All Academy Championships finalist, opened up for the Falcons in the title round. The Citadel’s Tyler Buckiso was able to fend off McGinty’s offense, posting a 4-1 decision win over the Falcon senior.
McLaughlin met with Navy’s Steban Cervantes in the 197 championship bout. In the waning seconds of a tied match, McLaughlin gave up a late takedown, falling to his back where Cervantes capitalized for a pin with four seconds left in the match. 
In the following heavyweight bout, Powers met with Trevor Smith of Army. Smith registered a takedown and a riding time point, with an added technical violation point, for a 4-0 decision over the freshman heavyweight.
In Air Force’s final bout of the night, Hyder took the mat determined to capitalize on his last opportunity at the All Academy Championships. The Air Force senior gave up one takedown to Army’s Austin Harry before taking control of the match. Following a quick escape, Hyder got a takedown of his own and started logging riding time. At the final whistle, the Yelm, Washington, native registered another escape and an additional riding time point to secure his title with a 5-2 decision.
Air Force totaled 93.5 points in their third place finish in a field of eight service academies. The All Academy Championship winners, Army West Point, logged 103.5 points, while second-place Navy registered 98 points. The 10 place-winning finishes marks the first time the entire team has earned podium finishes at the All Academies in at least 10 seasons.
Wrestling returns to action with a Big 12 dual on the road against Wyoming, Feb. 4, in Laramie, Wyo. The Wyoming dual is the first of three duals remaining on the season and the last dual on the road.


Drew Romero (AFA) def. Cole Nickerson (NOR) –F (2:08)
Dylan Hyder (AFA) def. Cody Lambert (USN) –8-1
John Twomey (AFA) def. John Reed (VMI) –6-2
Jerry McGinty (AFA) def. Nate Henkle (MMA) –F (3:30)
Alex Mossing (AFA) def. Erik Beshada (MMA) –4-2
Tyler Wiederholt (AFA) def. Ruston Hill (CIT) –MD (12-2)
Michael Billingsley (AFA) Michael Polomba (CGA) –14-9
Zen Ikehara (AFA) Joe Fiore (MMA) – F (2:41)
Anthony McLaughlin (AFA) David Rogers (NOR) –TF (19-1)
Kerry Powers (AFA) Cory Tomasetti (CGA) –F (1:56)

Trey Chalifoux (AWP) def. Drew Romero (AFA) –6-3
Dylan Hyder (AFA) Andy Szalwinski (CIT) –F (3:36)
#18 Jared Prince (USN) def. John Twomey (AFA) –F (4:00)
Jerry McGinty (AFA) def. Matt Kelly (AWP) –9-5
#16 Russ Parsons (AWP) def. Alex Mossing (AFA) –9-4
Drew Daniels (USN) def. Tyler Wiederholt (AFA) –7-4
Ben Harvey (AWP) def. Michael Billingsley (AFA) –MD (8-0)
Michael Coleman (USN) def. Zen Ikehara (AFA) –6-0
Anthony McLaughlin (AFA) def. Sawyer Root (CIT) –7-6
Kerry Powers (AFA) def. Joe Bexley (CIT) –7-0