Miller wins third MAC title as Kent State finishes fourth

Kent State University Senior Caleb Marsh tries to pin Northern Illinois Universitys Trace Engelkes during Kents final home match of the season in the M.A.C. Center on Friday, Feb.13, 2015. March won 10-4 over Engelkes and the Flashes won 27-6 bringin their record to 8-12 overall.

Zac Sommer

Junior Ian Miller won his third consecutive Mid-American Conference title as the Flashes placed fourth overall in the MAC Championships Sunday.

“I just kept my composure and didn’t get frustrated,” Miller said. “It’s definitely a good feeling. I came here to win a MAC title and hopefully next year I can win my fourth.”

Miller defeated Missouri’s Joseph Lavallee 4-2 in the final match of the 157-pound weight class.

“He is really hard to score on,” coach Jim Andrassy said. “He just does the simple things. He gets away when he has to and scores when he has the opportunity.”

Kent State finished fourth in the MAC Championships with 75.5 points, in front of Central Michigan with 74.5 points and Northern Iowa with 72.5 points

“We ended up beating two teams that we lost to earlier in the year,” Andrassy said. “As a coach you always want to do a little better, but all in all, I thought we did alright.”

Three Kent State wrestlers qualified for the NCAA tournament, while two await at-large bids.

Juniors Ian Miller (157) and Michael DePalma (149), along with sophomore Mimmo Lytle (285) all earned automatic bids Sunday.

DePalma finished third in the 149-pound weight class after pinning Eastern Michigan’s Nick Barber and then pinning Tywan Claxton of Ohio University.

“I was just wrestling, trying to get points and the pins came with it,” DePalma said. “It’s nice to get that automatic bid.”

Junior Mack McGuire (133) and senior Caleb Marsh (174) both await at-large bids. McGuire finished third after winning three straight matches in the consolation bracket.

Marsh finished fourth after losing his third place match 4-3 to Central Michigan’s Jordan Ellingwood, who won due to a crucial riding time point.

Senior Tyler Small (141) took fifth after a 6-2 win over Michael Shaw of Eastern Michigan. Small also moved into third place among Kent State’s career win leaders with 127.

Junior Del Vinas (125) and redshirt freshman Jerald Spohn (184) both took sixth place in their respective weight classes. Vinas dropped a close match to Old Dominion’s Brandon Jeske, while Spohn couldn’t compete in his final match due to injury.

The 2015 NCAA Championships will take place at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis March 19-21.

Contact Zac Sommer at [email protected]