ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Duke redshirt freshman Marcus Cain captured a pair of victories Saturday afternoon, but the Blue Devils fell to Michigan 30-14 and Eastern Michigan 30-9 at Cliff Keen Arena in a tri-meet action.
Six Blue Devils came away with at least one victory, including two earning bonus points in their victories. Cain was the one Duke wrester to win twice, while redshirt freshmen Trey Adamson and Conner Hartmann both registered major decision wins over their Michigan foes. Duke falls to 1-3 in duals this season.
The Blue Devils opened the day against Eastern Michigan. The Eagles jumped out to a 6-0 lead with a fall at 125 pounds before the Blue Devils rallied with three straight wins to go in front 9-6. Brandon Gambucci picked up the first win for Duke and his eighth of the season, outlasting Vincent Puzzuto 8-5 at 133 pounds. He now extended his personal win streak to seven and remained unbeaten in duals at 3-0.
Sophomore Tanner Hough and Cain added consecutive decisions at 141 and 149 pounds, respectively, to lift Duke to the 9-6 advantage. Hough picked up his eighth win of the year, shutting out Michael Shaw 4-0, while Cain gathered his 10th victory of the year with a 5-0 blanking of Justin Melick.
Eastern Michigan quickly regained the lead at 12-9, with a pin at 157 pounds and never looked back en route to the 30-9 win.
Up against the Wolverines, the Blue Devils rallied after a tough start as they won the three final matches in the 30-14 setback. Michigan raced out to a 14-0 advantage before Cain put Duke on the scoreboard with a thrilling 7-5 decision over John Evashevski.
Cain started the bout with an early takedown for the 2-0 lead and added another takedown to go in front 4-1 at the end of the first period. An escape by the Winston-Salem native made it 5-1 before Evashevski added one point to make it 5-2 heading into the final two minutes. Cain added two more points to make it 7-2 before the Wolverine escaped to make it 7-3. Evashevski added a takedown at the buzzer, but it was too little too late as Cain picked up his 11th win of the year.
After consecutive wins by the Wolverines at 157 and 165 pounds, the Blue Devils answered with three straight wins, including a pair of major decisions.
Adamson, at 174 pounds, dominated his match against Brandon Hill and led 5-2 after three minutes. The redshirt freshman continued to control from the top position to take a 6-2 advantage into the final minutes. Adamson quickly made it 7-2 and added a takedown and the riding time bonus point for the 10-2 major.
Diego Bencomo followed Adamson with a hard-fought 6-3 decision over Jordan Thomas. Bencomo, wrestling in his first dual of the season, scored an early takedown in the third period to make it 6-2 and held off a final charge from Thomas to post his fifth victory of the season.
Hartmann, looking to rebound after starting the day with a narrow setback, jumped all over Chris Heald with the early takedown and built his riding time to two minutes after the first period. He stretched his lead to 6-0 after five minutes en route to the commanding 9-0 major decision.