Even with the bright lights and packed crowd, the North Carolina wrestling team couldn’t pull off the upset against No. 9 N.C. State (9-1, 2-0 ACC) in the “Brawl at the Hall.” While the Tar Heels (5-5, 0-2 ACC) were competitive, the Wolfpack still came away from Memorial Hall with a comfortable 19-11 victory.
Early on, neither team could take a significant advantage, as both teams split the opening four bouts. Up 9-6, N.C. State had a chance to stretch the lead, but the Wolfpack were denied when UNC junior Danny Chaid secured a takedown in overtime to defeat Michael Macchiavello in the 197-pound match to keep the Tar Heels within striking distance.
In the 285-pound match, North Carolina had a chance to take its first lead over the Wolfpack. Cory Daniel (UNC) and Mike Kosoy (N.C. State) needed two sudden-death overtime periods to decide the bout, and a takedown by Kosoy extended the Wolfpack lead to 12-8.
Down 16-8, UNC first-year Nicholas Lirette upset No. 15 Jamal Morris in the 133-pound match to narrow the deficit to 16-11 with one match remaining. But needing a pin was a tall order for No. 3 Joey Ward, as he faced No. 2 Kevin Jack in the 141-pound bout. Jack dominated Ward and put any hope of a miracle comeback to rest with his decisive victory.