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Orndorff secures win for No. 8 Ohio State at No. 10 Virginia Tech, 17-13

by Dan Wallenburg, Ohio State

Tate Orndorff of Ohio State has his hand raised in victory. Photo courtesy of Ohio State Athletics.

COLUMBUS, Ohio – No. 8 Ohio State (2-0) traveled to Blacksburg, Virginia, Friday to face No. 10 Virginia Tech (0-1) at Cassell Coliseum and the Top 10 battle did not disappoint. The Buckeyes earned the 17-13 win that was not decided until the final bout between heavyweights Tate Orndorff of Ohio State and the Hokies’ Nathan Trexler.

How it Happened

The match started at 125 between No. 14 Malik Heinselman from Ohio State and No. 12 Sam Latona of VT. Neither was able to score until Heinselman earned an escape to start the second period for the 1-0 lead. Latona tied it at 1-all with an escape to start the third. Heinselman earned the first takedown of the night with 40 seconds left and then added another after a Latona escape to win by decision 5-2.

Dylan Koontz was next up for the Buckeyes at 133 vs. No. 4 Korbin Meyers. Meyers led 2-1 after the first period but Koontz tied at 2-all with an escape in the second before another Meyers takedown made it 4-2 heading into the third. Meyers went on to earn a 10-2 win by major decision to give the Hokies a 4-3 lead.

At 141, Dylan D’Emilio took on Collin Gerardi of Virginia Tech. Despite an action-packed first period, there were no points awarded heading into the second period. D’Emilio was in control for the entire second to collect two minutes of riding time. D’Emilio escaped to start the third and scored a late takedown to win by decision 4-0 after the riding time point was added.

In one of the two featured Top 10 matchups of the match, No. 2 Sammy Sasso of Ohio State and No. 9 Bryce Andonian of Virginia Tech battled at 149. Sasso scored first with a takedown and added two more around two Andonian escapes and a late Virginia Tech reversal to make it 6-4 after the first. Sasso escaped to start the second for a 7-4 lead to start the third period. Andonian escaped to start the third then was awarded a takedown before an Andonian reversal made it 9-7. Sasso secured the match with an escape and a point for riding time to make the final 11-7 and a win by decision.

Bryce Hepner took the mat for the first time in a dual at 157 for the Buckeyes vs. No. 29 Connor Brady. After one period, Brady led 2-1 on a takedown followed by a Hepner escape. The match headed to the third with Brady up 3-1 on a second period escape. Hepner earned an escape in the third but it was not enough as he fell by decision, 3-2.

No. 10 Carson Kharchla took on Clayton Ulrey of Virgina Tech at 165. Kharchla scored the first take down and allowed Ulrey an escape and then took Ulrey down again to lead 4-1 after one period. Ulrey scored an escape to start the second to head into the third period trailing Kharchla, 4-2. Starting in the down position to start the third, Kharchla earned an escape and a point for riding time to win by decision, 5-2.

At 174, No. 6 Ethan Smith was challenged by No. 4 Mekhi Lewis of Virginia Tech. Lewis scored the first takedown followed by a reversal by Smith. After an escape, Lewis entered the second period leading 3-2. Smith got the quick escape to tie the bout at 3-all. Lewis grabbed the escape point and then a takedown to win the match by decision, 6-4.

For the Buckeyes at 184, No. 21 Rocky Jordan wrestled No. 9 Hunter Bolen. After the first period, Bolen lead 2-0 on a takedown. The lead doubled to 4-0 heading into the third period after Jordan was called twice for stalling. A takedown and riding time led to the final 7-1 win for the Hokies to put Virginia Tech in the lead in team scoring, 13-12.

No. 24 Gavin Hoffman was up next with the chance to the put the Buckeyes back on top in the team scoring vs. Virginia Tech’s Dakota Howard. Hoffman scored the first takedown then cuts Howard loose for a 2-1 lead after the first. Howard ties it at 2-all after Hoffman cuts Howard loose again from the top position. Heading into the third tied at 2-all, Hoffman earned an escape to take the lead and hold on for the 3-2 win by decision.

The match was decided at heavyweight between No. 7 Tate Orndorff of the Buckeyes and No. 14 Nathan Trexler of Virginia Tech. There was no score after the first. Trexler defers and Orndorff chose down to start the second period and earned the bout’s first point with an escape late in the period. Take scored a takedown with just under a minute left in the third to take a 3-1 lead. Tate was called for stalling to cose the Buckeyes a team point but Tate held on for a 3-2 win by decision to secure the win for the Buckeyes.

• The Buckeyes and Hokies have met 17 times with Ohio State owning the 14-3 lead in the series. The Buckeyes are 8-1 in Blacksburg.

• Ohio State opened the season with a dual vs. No. 14 North Carolina. Ohio State built a 17-0 lead started with the 165 match and the debut of Carson Kharchla. The No. 8 Buckeyes won the match 23-12.

• Several Buckeyes earned titles at the Ohio Intercollegiate Open Sunday in Tiffin, Ohio. Ohio State earned titles in the Open Division at 125 (Malik Heinselman), at 141 (Dylan D’Emilio), at 149 (Sammy Sasso), at 157 (Bryce Hepner), at 165 (Carson Kharchla), at 174 (Ethan Smith), at 197 (Gavin Hoffman) and at 285 (Tate Orndorff). In the Freshman/Sophomore Division, the Buckeyes won at 157 (Paddy Gallagher) and at heavyweight (Mike Misita).

• According to Intermat Wrestling, the Buckeyes entered the match Friday with seven Buckeyes ranked among the Top 25 in their respective weight classes. They are: Malik Heinselman (No. 14/125); Sammy Sasso (No. 2/149); Carson Kharchla (No. 10/165); Ethan Smith (No. 6/174); Rocky Jordan (No. 21/184), Gavin Hoffman (No. 24/197) and Tate Orndorff (No. 7/HWT).

• Sasso finished the 2021 season as the NCAA Runner-up at 149 with a 16-1 overall record and a 9-0 mark in duals. He recorded a 9-1 record vs. ranked opponents and had five pins, one technical fall and one major decision on the year. He is 5-0 this season with a Top 5 win vs. No. 5 Zach Sherman of North Carolina.

• On Nov. 10, Tom Ryan, head coach of the Buckeyes, signed the top-ranked recruiting class in the country, including the Top 3 overall recruits.

• Broderick Harris was included in the signing class as an honorary member. Broderick, who aspired to wrestle for the Buckeyes and in the Olympics, was a tireless and fierce competitor. He tragically died in a house fire at age 11 in 2014.

• Ohio State will next compete against Notre Dame College in a dual at the Covelli Center Nov. 23 (7 p.m.). For tickets call 1-800-Go-Bucks or visit


125 | No. 14 Malik Heinselman (OSU) def. No. 12 Sam Latona (VT) | D, 5-2

133 | No. 4 Korbin Myers (VT) def. Dylan Koontz (OSU) | MD, 10-2

141 | Dylan D’Emilio (OSU) def. Collin Gerardi (VT) | D, 4-0

149 | No. 2 Sammy Sasso (OSU) def. No. 9 Bryce Andonian (VT) | D, 11-7

157 | No. 29 Connor Brady (VT) def. Bryce Hepner (OSU) | D, 3-2

165 | No. 10 Carson Kharchla (OSU) def. Clayton Ulrey (VT) | D, 5-2

174 | No. 4 Mekhi Lewis (VT) def. No. 6 Ethan Smith (OSU) | D, 6-4

184 | No. 9 Hunter Bolen (VT) def. No. 21 Rocky Jordan (OSU) | D, 7-1

197 | No. 24 Gavin Hoffman (OSU) def. Dakota Howard (TV) | D, 3-2

285 | No. 7 Tate Orndorff (OSU) def. No. 14 Nathan Trexler (VT) | D, 3-2

Up Next

The Buckeyes return to Columbus for a home dual vs. Notre Dame College Nov. 23 at the Covelli Center. The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. It will be live streamed on B1G+($). Ohio State is 4-0 all-time vs. the Falcons. The last time the teams faced off was Nov. 15, 2013, a 29-11 win for the Buckeyes.

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