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Jan. 11, 2014

PITTSBURGH  – The No. 12 University of Pittsburgh wrestling team (5-1, 2-0 ACC) started with three victories by major decision and didn’t look back en route to a 27-7 win over North Carolina State (7-2, 0-1 ACC) in its ACC home opener at Fitzgerald Field House.

Anthony Zanetta started the night off with a convincing 19-6 major decision over Micah Perez at 125 pounds. Zanetta used five takedowns, two three-point near falls, an escape and a bonus point for riding time to earn the victory.

Shelton Mack followed Zanetta with a major of his own at 133 pounds over Chris Wilkes. Mack led by a mere 4-2 margin going into the third before pouring it on in the final frame. Mack started down in the third and quickly escaped to gain a 5-2 lead. A pair of takedowns less than 20 seconds apart sprung the edge to 9-3. With time running down in the match and riding time locked up, Mack scored on a go behind to earn the 12-4 major decision, giving Pitt an 8-0 lead.

At 141 pounds, Edgar Bright pounced on Sam Speno early scoring a takedown a mere 15 seconds into the bout and riding Speno out for the remainder of the period. In the second, Bright started down and quickly escaped before scoring a pair of takedowns to lead 7-1 going into the third. A stall on bottom in the third pushed the lead to 8-1 and Bright was able to wrap up the major with an impressive 5:23 of riding time.

Pitt picked up three more points at 149 pounds thanks to Mikey Racciato who earned a 15-13 decision over Brian Hamann. The two wrestlers exchanged takedowns, reversals and nearfalls in a back-and-forth match. With Hamann leading 13-12 with 30 seconds left, Racciato was able to roll through and score a reversal to take the 14-13 lead with a mere 13 seconds left. The NC State staff challenged the call but it was upheld and Racciato was able to ride out Hamann the rest of the way to secure the win.

The Wolfpack got on the board with a decision at 157 pounds but Pitt quickly responded picking up decisions at 165, 174, 184 and 197 pounds.

At 165, Geno Morelli used a second period escape and takedown and two near fall points in the third to take a 6-1 decision over Peter Santos.

In the lone bout between ranked wrestlers on the evening eighth-ranked Tyler Wilps earned a hard fought 4-0 victory over No. 19 Peter Renda.

Making his return to the dual lineup, Max Thomusseit looked solid at 184 pounds with an 8-4 victory over Michael Macchiavello.

Nick Bonaccorsi rounded out the Panthers in the win column with his 10-5 decision over KaRonne Jones.

Despite dropping the heavyweight bout, Pitt was able to win handily, 27-7, earning its first home ACC victory.  

The Panthers will return to action tomorrow beginning at 10 a.m. when they host the nine-team Pitt Duals. Pitt will face off with Duke, Davidson and Buffalo on the day. Other teams in the field include NC State, Eastern Michigan, North Carolina, Clarion and Seton Hill.

No. 12 Pitt 27, NC State 7

125: Anthony Zanetta (P) m. dec. Micah Perez (N), 19-6; Pitt leads, 4-0

133: No. 16 Shelton Mack (P) m. dec. Chris Wilkes (N), 12-4; Pitt leads, 8-0

141: Edgar Bright (P) m. dec. Sam Speno (N), 9-1; Pitt leads, 12-0

149: Mikey Racciato (P) dec. Brian Hamann (N), 15-13; Pitt leads, 15-0

157: Tommy Gantt (N) dec. Cole Sheptock (P), 4-3; Pitt leads, 15-3

165: Geno Morelli (P) dec. Peter Santos (N), 6-1; Pitt leads, 18-3

174: No. 8 Tyler Wilps (P) dec. No. 19 Peter Renda (N), 4-0; Pitt leads, 21-3

184: No. 6 Max Thomusseit (P) dec. Michael Macchiavello (N), 8-4; Pitt leads, 24-3

197: No. 13 Nick Bonaccorsi (P) dec. KaRonne Jones (N), 10-5; Pitt leads, 27-3

285: No. 4 Nick Gwiazdowski (N) m. dec. P.J. Tasser (P), 10-1; Pitt wins, 27-7


No. 12 Pitt Wrestling Down NC State in ACC Home Opener

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