ASU wrestling sweeps California road trip, returns home

The ASU wrestling team escaped with a 22-15 win over CSU-Bakersfield on Sunday night, capping the California segment of their road trip, and their last Pac-12 competition before the conference championships in Palo Alto on March 2.

The Sun Devils (9-7, 4-1 Pac-12) came from behind once again to defeat the Roadrunners (6-8, 1-4 Pac-12) in a match that swung back and forth between the two teams.

Heavyweight redshirt junior Chase Eskam eked out a 3-2 win over redshirt senior Sam Cervantes to give ASU their first lead of the night.

 
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Sophomore Ares Carpio (125) bounced back from his loss at Cal Poly on Friday night in a big way, thrashing redshirt junior Matt Correa in a 21-9 major decision. The bonus points accumulated in major decisions via Carpio and redshirt junior Joel Smith (157) in an 18-6 drubbing of redshirt junior Spencer Hill were key in the Sun Devil rally.

A couple of missteps by ASU allowed CSU Bakersfield to keep the match close throughout. Sophomore Cord Coronado (133) started in place of redshirt sophomore Kalin Goodsite, and lost 7-0 to redshirt senior Jose Mendoza, while sophomore Matt Kraus (141) suffered a rare pinfall to Bakersfield redshirt sophomore Ian Nickell in 5:42. After sophomore Ray Waters (174) dropped a tight match 1-0 to redshirt sophomore Bryce Hammond, CSU Bakersfield led ASU 15-14.

Redshirt sophomore No. 20 Blake Stauffer (184) had his way with redshirt junior Sean Pollock, also wrestling up a class from 174 lbs. for the depleted CSU Bakersfield squad. Stauffer won in an 18-3 tech fall, earning five team points and vaulting the Sun Devils to a 19-15 lead over the Runners. Sophomore Wesley Moore (197) clinched the ASU victory with a 12-6 decision over junior Ruben Franklin.

The Sun Devils hope to avenge last year’s blowout loss to Oklahoma State at Wells Fargo Arena, this time travelling to Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., to face the Cowboys on Feb. 21 at 6 p.m. MST.

A loss would make ASU winless against the Big-12 for two consecutive years, previously falling to Iowa State at home in January, and at Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa, last year.

Reach the reporter at smodrich@asu.edu or follow him on Twitter @modrich_22