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UVU wrestling: Wolverines falter on road, fall to Boise State

Utah Valley heavyweight Dustin Dennison (top) grapples with a competitor from Boise State last season at UVU's PE Building in Orem. Dennison won his match by fall on Saturday night over BSU's Gabriel Gonzalez in Boise.
Utah Valley heavyweight Dustin Dennison (top) grapples with a competitor from Boise State last season at UVU's PE Building in Orem. Dennison won his match by fall on Saturday night over BSU's Gabriel Gonzalez in Boise.
Shane Truskolaski

The Utah Valley University wrestling team found itself on the wrong end of a 32-14 decision to Boise State on Saturday evening at BSU's Bronco Gym in Boise. The Pac-12 Broncos won seven of the 10 bouts on the night en route to earning the victory.

UVU drops to 1-2 on the season with the setback, while BSU improves to 1-1 with the victory.

"We were flat tonight. Give credit to Boise State for being prepared and wrestling with energy and confidence. They (Boise State) deserved to win," said head UVU coach Greg Williams. "Hopefully our younger guys just learned a valuable lesson about the need to wrestle through situations, even when they don't feel as fresh in a match as they usually do."

BSU jumped out to a 9-0 lead in the dual meet after back-to-back victories from Carson Kuhn and Michael Cook, which included an opening-match fall from Kuhn. Utah Valley redshirt freshman Grant LaMont then got the Wolverines on the board with a hard-fought 10-7 decision over BSU's Dakota Wall at 149 pounds to cut the deficit to 9-3, but the Broncos went on to win the next five matches, including two more by fall to pull out to a decisive 32-3 lead.

Utah Valley didn't give up from there, however, as junior Dustin Dennison stopped the drought by pinning BSU's Gabriel Gonzalez in just 1:09 seconds at heavyweight and redshirt sophomore Mitch Brown followed by capping the night with a 22-7 technical fall victory over BSU's Will Bardezbain at 125 pounds to make the final score 32-14.

Dennison and Brown paced the Wolverines on the night by winning their respective matches by bonus points, while LaMont pulled his out by decision.

With the setback, the Wolverines drop to 4-7 all-time versus Boise State and 0-5 in Boise.

Also on Saturday, nine Utah Valley grapplers took part at the Colorado Mesa Open in Grand Junction, Colorado. Seven of those nine Wolverines placed at the event led by unattached freshman Benjamin Andrew winning a title in the heavyweight bracket. Andrew went an unblemished 3-0 en route to winning his CMU Open title with two wins via fall and the other by major decision. Redshirt freshman 141-pounder Chase Call and unattached sophomore Kieffer Taylor (165) were next by placing second at their respective weight class, while freshmen Austin Trapp (133) and Matt Findlay (141) each placed third. Unattached freshman Kyle Snelling also had a nice showing by placing fourth at 165, while fellow unattached freshman Heston Woolsey rounded out UVU's placers by taking fifth at 133.

UVU looks to return to its winning ways on Thursday, Dec. 15, when it welcomes fellow Pac-12 foe Oregon State to town for its 2016-17 home opener. The Wolverines and Beavers open the Big 12 versus Pac-12 showdown at 7 p.m., at UVU's newly named Lockhart Arena (formerly the UVU PE Building).

James Warnick is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information about Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.