Control seemed to be the dominant theme for the ASU wrestling team as it defeated Embry-Riddle 38-6 Sunday at Wells Fargo Arena on the Tempe campus.
ASU (3-2, 2-0 Pac-10) won eight of the ten matches, claiming two wins by fall and two major decisions, accumulating 20 points in the process.
“It’s a big improvement, we learned a lot and did a lot of things better,” ASU coach Thom Ortiz said. “Each day we get better.”
The first pin of the day came from No. 8 sophomore Anthony Robles (125 pounds). After dominating the match with a 10-1 lead entering the third round, Robles went for the kill with little more than a minute remaining, pulling freshman Andrew Ortega to the ground to win by fall at 5:46.
“It was a good rebound from last weekend. You’ve got to keep on climbing that ladder,” Robles said. “I’m just always trying to go out 100 percent, and just trying to make this team just that much better. As long as we’re improving as a team; that’s what I’m happy with.”
The final pin for the Sun Devils came from their final wrestler, 285-pound junior Erik Nye. With only 53 seconds elapsed in the bout, Nye took down Embry-Riddle freshman Daniel Brutinel to secure the pin.
“This guy knew how I wrestled, but he just couldn’t stop it,” Nye said. “He was kind of scared coming out, and I just took advantage of it.”
His coach was pleased with the performance.
“Nye’s coming around quickly,” Ortiz said. “He’s turned up the level. At Iowa he realized he could have won but he didn’t. He started wrestling real hard in the last 30 seconds and I said, ‘Why don’t you try that in the first 30 seconds?’”
Nye seemed keen to the advice, and it was perhaps the best news of the dual for the Sun Devils. After five matches this season, Nye is 3-2, with one major decision and one win by fall.
“It’s real important,” Nye said. “Each dual is different. But usually when you win the first and last matches, you win the dual.”
Sophomore Orlando Jimenez (133 pounds) also got his second opportunity of the season, returning after a variety of injuries that included a head wound and a sore ankle.
“It felt good to get back on the mat again and to get the win,” Jimenez said.
The second match of the day pitted Jimenez against redshirt freshman Jeremy Mazon. Jimenez ended with the majority points, securing a 10-6 decision.
“It’s about controlling pace,” he said.
The Sun Devils also recorded victories from No. 7 sophomore Chris Drouin (141), sophomore Jerrad Trulson (157), freshman Kyle DeBerry (174), junior Jake Cranford (184) and freshman Jeff Cappellini (197).
“Every match builds confidence,” Nye said. “The more matches you have you basically just build up over time. You just gain more technique, get more of your style.”
Reach the reporter at email@example.com