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Duncan shines as Illinois wrestling defeats Purdue

Illinois%27+Isaiah+Martinez+wrestles+with+Michigan%27s+Logan+Massa+in+the+165+pound+weight+class+during+the+match+at+Huff+Hall+on+Friday%2C+January+20.+Martinez+won+by+decision+and+the+Illini+defeated+the+Wolverines+34-6.
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Duncan shines as Illinois wrestling defeats Purdue

Illinois' Isaiah Martinez wrestles with Michigan's Logan Massa in the 165 pound weight class during the match at Huff Hall on Friday, January 20. Martinez won by decision and the Illini defeated the Wolverines 34-6.

Illinois' Isaiah Martinez wrestles with Michigan's Logan Massa in the 165 pound weight class during the match at Huff Hall on Friday, January 20. Martinez won by decision and the Illini defeated the Wolverines 34-6.

Austin Yattoni

Illinois' Isaiah Martinez wrestles with Michigan's Logan Massa in the 165 pound weight class during the match at Huff Hall on Friday, January 20. Martinez won by decision and the Illini defeated the Wolverines 34-6.

Austin Yattoni

Austin Yattoni

Illinois' Isaiah Martinez wrestles with Michigan's Logan Massa in the 165 pound weight class during the match at Huff Hall on Friday, January 20. Martinez won by decision and the Illini defeated the Wolverines 34-6.

By Jared Farmer, Staff writer

With bonus points coming from freshman Dylan Duncan and senior Isaiah Martinez, the No. 14-ranked Illinois wrestling team defeated Purdue 21-12 on Sunday afternoon at Holloway Gym. This victory improves the Illini’s record to 4-3 (3-2 in the Big Ten conference).

Illinois started the dual well, winning six of the first eight matches, clinching the victory before the final two matches at heavyweight and 125 pounds — both of which went to Purdue.

At 133 pounds, Duncan was the first to score points for the Illini, starting out his match with two takedowns early along with a riding time of 1:57. After a reversal to start the second period, Duncan managed to secure two more takedowns and increased his riding time to 4:30, securing a 12-2 victory by major decision. This marks the fourth time Duncan has clinched a victory by major decision in his collegiate career, which also leads the team for this season.

“(Duncan) is very good and will have a great career,” head coach Jim Heffernan said. “He’s capable of scoring a bunch of points and as he continues to learn and mature, he’ll do great things.”

Following Duncan’s victory, freshman Mike Carr also scored for the Illini with a victory at 141 pounds. Carr had 46 seconds of riding time as well as a takedown in the first period against Purdue’s Nate Limmex. After a 3-3 tie in the second period, Carr secured a two-legged takedown in the second period and then secured his fourth takedown in the third, finishing with 1:57 of riding time.

“Michael beat a very good opponent today,” said Heffernan. “He still has a lot to give. As he continues to gain more confidence, he’ll excel.”

After Austin Nash scored for Purdue at 149 pounds, seniors Kyle Langenderfer (157) and Isaiah Martinez (165) created an 8-0 scoring run for the Illini.

Langenderfer’s match against Purdue’s Cole Wysocki was a close match throughout, with each wrestler trading leads seven different times. Going into the final 20 seconds of the match down 7-8, Langenderfer managed to work his way into getting a match-clinching takedown on Wysocki, holding on for a 9-8 victory.

“(Langenderfer’s) experience over the last several years is what can carry him through those situations,” said Heffernan. “He handled the situation well, kept his composure and found a way to score and win.”

Holding a seven-point advantage through four bouts, Isaiah Martinez gave the Illini a commanding 12-point lead with an 18-3 technical fall against Purdue’s Jacob Morissey. Martinez won with five takedowns and eight back points, earning his fifth tech fall of the season. Martinez, now 7-0 on the season, has now moved into a four-way tie for 20th place on the all-time wins list for Illinois (105 wins), sharing the spot with assistant head coach Mike Poeta as well as former Illini John Dergo and Kevin Puebla.

After the Boilermakers won their second match of the dual with a victory from Dylan Lydy at 174 pounds over freshman David Riojas, juniors Emery Parker (184) and Andre Lee (197) scored wins for the Illini. Using three takedowns as well as securing Illinois’ third riding time point, Parker defeated Purdue’s Max Lyon in an 8-4 decision. Following Parker’s victory, Lee used two takedowns against Purdue’s Kobe Woods to clinch the win for the Illini.

With their victories, both Martinez and Parker remain unbeaten in duals this season, improving to 7-0. Parker has now won his last ten matches dating back to Dec. 1 at Iowa.

“They are both great leaders,” Heffernan said. “They work very hard, pay attention to details and earn everything they get.”

Illinois is now 24-4 against Purdue since Heffernan joined the Illinois coaching staff in 1992, including a current seven-match winning streak.

“We wrestled okay today,” Heffernan said. “I still think we are better than what we are doing at a few weights, but it is always good to win as a team.”

@jaredefarmer

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