BOONE, N.C. — Appalachian State University wrestling will host Southern Conference rival Chattanooga on Sunday for its final regular season home match at Varsity Gym.
The 16th-ranked Mountaineers (11-2, 5-0 SoCon) last battled Chattanooga in a down-to-the-wire match, with Appalachian pulling out the 25-15 win – the Mocs’ first SoCon loss since 2012.
The Black and Gold then went neck-and-neck with Chattanooga in the 2016 Southern Conference Tournament, where then-redshirt-junior Denzel Dejournette won a tight 4-2 decision to give App State the title, 83.5-83.0 over the Mocs.
Seemingly always intertwined, the two teams currently top the SoCon rankings with the Mountaineers in first place with an unbeaten 5-0 conference record and Chattanooga in second with a 3-1 record.
The Mocs’ lone defeat this season came recently at the hands of Campbell, who went into Tennessee and grabbed a 21-19 win. Campbell also battled Appalachian hard, but the Mountaineers were still able to come away with the 24-13 victory.
App State’s closest conference match, however, came on Jan. 24 when Gardner-Webb took it to the final, heavyweight match. The Mountaineers were able to come through in the clutch moments, getting the dramatic 19-17 win.
Individually for Appalachian, No. 22 senior Vito Pasone has one back-to-back bonus point matches, with his last being a pin over Gardner-Webb’s Landon LoAlbo in just 1:26. With a 12-6 overall record and an 8-2 SoCon mark, Pasone has won seven of his last eight matches. No. 21 freshman Colby Smith has won 10 of his last 11 duals matches – six of which were bonus matches and three of which were pins.
Sophomore Randall Diabe is coming off a huge win over Payton Mills of Gardner-Webb on Jan. 24. Diabe was in a must-win situation with the Mountaineers needing to win the final two matches in order to defeat the Runnin’ Bulldogs. Staying on the attack, he was able to take the match 4-0, keeping App State alive.
With the set-up by Diabe, No. 9 (TrackWrestling) Dejournette was able to win the final, heavyweight match against Gardner-Webb with a 4-1 decision to give Appalachian the win. The win was the senior’s 10th duals win this season and 20th win overall.
Individually for Chattanooga, the Mocs are led by Bryce Carr at 184 pounds and Jared Johnson at the heavyweight. Carr is currently ranked No. 19 in the country and owns a 19-4 record overall on the season. Johnson, who is 21-5 on the year, is currently ranked right with Dejournette at No. 9 (InterMat) in the country, setting up a big battle at the heavyweight.
The action between the two teams is set to begin at 2 p.m. at Varsity Gym.
No. 16 Appalachian State (11-2, 5-0 SoCon)
125: #22 Vito Pasone (12-6)
133: #21 Colby Smith (22-7)
141: Irvin Enriquez (12-14)
149: #15 Matt Zovistoski (20-8)
157: Gavin Londoff (9-14)
165: #28 Forrest Przybysz (18-10)
174: #17 Nick Kee (10-3)
184: #30 David Peters-Logue (14-10)
197: Randall Diabe (13-13)
285: #9 Denzel Dejournette (20-5)
Chattanooga (5-8, 3-1 SoCon)
125: Alonzo Allen (12-10)
133: Chris Debien (11-9)
141: Roman Boylen (3-8)
OR Chase Zemenak (4-3)
149: Dylanger Potter (9-12)
157: Trey Watson (3-7)
OR Dalton Clark (0-7)
165: Justin Lampe (11-9)
174: Sean Mappes (12-8)
184: #19 Bryce Carr (19-4)
197: Clay Dent (4-7)
285: #9 Jared Johnson (21-5)