By Kim Staudinger
Senior Tyson Thivierge, in his last home competition as a Northern wrestler, came within eight wins of the all-time winloss record at Montana State University-Northern with a pin in 2:37 over Western Wyoming College's Dan Bigalow.
Thivierge, whose record improved to 33-3 on the season with his 123rd win, is behind Chol An with 131 career wins, Mike Mazurkiewicz with 128 and Turk Lords with 126.
The Lights started the night with three consecutive pins and it appeared Northern may finally get the shutout it had been longing for. Heavyweight Matt Carter pinned Alan Macchione in 51 seconds to start the night. Andy Thompson, who was wrestling in only his second meet of the year, pinned Zazhn Phelps in 1:00 and Caleb Schaeffer pinned Pat Garcia in 4:52.
But the thought of a shutout left after the 141 pound match as Eric Dunmire lost in overtime 9-7 to Ryan Harmon.
"He got outfought," assistant coach Terry Brands said of Dunmire's match. "Dunmire is probably one of the most talented kids, which (makes seeing him lose) frustrating."
With an 18-3 lead, Bobby Mantle came up at 149 pounds and defeated Ricky Gardea by major decision 14-3. Dustyn Azure followed with another big win over Marc Fenwick 26-11. Western Wyoming forfeited the next match at 165 pounds, giving Kyle Klonizos a win and the Lights a commanding 33-3 lead.
Mike Lester, who had not been on the mat since Dec. 15 due to a knee injury, entered the Lights' lineup at 174 pounds and won by fall in 1:53 over Cameron Bretz. Lights head coach David Ray said Lester, who wrestled in place of Kyle Fisher, needed to get back on the mat and face some competition before next weekend's tournament at Northwestern College.
Then it was Thivierge's turn and he dominated in his last home meet at Northern. Thivierge's match ended the night as Western Wyoming forfeited at 197 pounds. With the forfeit, Northern defeated Western Wyoming 51-3.
"Our goal tonight was a shutout," Ray said. "We're capable of doing it and we haven't done it yet."
Thivierge and the team's two other seniors, Bret Favorite and Carl Valley, were recognized during Senior Night at Saturday's event. Favorite and Valley did not wrestle Saturday.
The following are the results from Northern's dual meet with Western Wyoming College:
125 Andy Thompson won by fall in 1:00 over Zazhn Phelps
133 Caleb Schaeffer won by fall in 4:52 over Pat Garcia
141 Eric Dunmire lost by decision 9-7 in overtime to Ryan Harmon
149 Bobby Mantle won by major decision 14-3 over Ricky Gardea
157 Dustyn Azure won by major decision 26-11 over Marc Fenwick
165 Kyle Klonizos won by forfeit
174 Mike Lester won by fall in 1:53 over Cameron Bretz
184 Tyson Thivierge won by fall in 2:37 over Dan Bigalow
197 Emmett Willson won by forfeit
HWT Matt Carter won by fall in 51 seconds over Alan Macchione