The match went back and forth for the entire night. ASU took an early advantage, winning the first two matches and taking a 6-0 lead.
The team was looking for a boost to help get fans back into the match. Monte Schmalhaus (174 lbs) found and delivered that boost with his match.
Schamlhaus started the match with a huge takedown and earned near fall points. With 14 seconds left in the second period, Schmalhaus took down his opponent and quickly turned into a power half, giving him the pin and tying it up at six as the crowd erupted. That enthusiasm helped the Wolverines come back.
After a four-match skid against four top-ranked opponents, the tie against ASU had fallen into a deficit of 15-6, with the Wolverines losing each match by only a few points. Looking rather impressive despite losing the matches, it was up to standout redshirt freshmen, Jade Rauser (125 lbs) to lead the comeback win against the Sun Devils.
Rauser came out and took the match to his opponent. He wasted no time in getting a big takedown. After the takedown, Rauser kept going, working move after move to get the victory and pinned him before the first period was half over. After the pin, Rauser showed the crowd his appreciation for helping him get pumped and flexed his muscles as he dominated his opponent.
“The crowd really got me going,” Rauser said. “The drumline helped me get pumped up.”
Not to be outdone by his twin brother, Val Rauser (133 lbs) showed his determination to win. He took 15 seconds to get a takedown. Val showed great speed, and looked like as though he took a page from Schmalhaus’s book, put his opponent in a power half to finish the match with 17.1 seconds and a 18-15 lead in the dual.
“I have always had Jade in front of me, getting me ready to do well,” Rauser said. “[Jade Rauser’s pin] really got the crowd pumped and me pumped.”
After those two pins, the Wolverines contiued to show power and dominance against their opponents, looking to finish off the Sun Devils with the huge momentum boost.
The momentum continued as Avery Garner (141 lbs) and Josh Wilson (149 lbs) both won their matches to complete the comeback win, 26-15, scoring 14 unanswered points.
Head coach Greg Williams was pleased with his team’s performance and looks to continue in their two remaining duals of the four dual-home stretch.
“We have really great talent,” Williams said. “I told them if we go down by a few points, we can stay in it, and we really did that tonight.”
The Wolverines will continue their home stand against a Northern Colorado team Jan. 26 and take on Pac-12 powerhouse Stanford Feb. 1 in the PE building.