Last weekend, wrestling competed at the Budd Whitehill Duals tournament hosted by Lycoming. The tournament was a two-day event, taking place on Friday and Saturday. The Ephs boasted a 2-1 record on both days, finishing in seventh place. The men had another impressive result on Jan. 5 when they took home third at the Scott Viera Invitational at Roger Williams. Before winter break, the men went 1-2 at Johnson & Wales on Dec. 8.
On the second day of the Budd Whitehill Duals, the men edged out Heidelberg 22-19 but lost to Ohio Northern 26-11 in its second match. The men’s second win of the day came from a surprising forfeit by John Carroll. Tom Foote ’13 kick-started the team’s second day, beating his Heidelberg opponent 8-2.
The day before, the Ephs went 2-1, defeating both Waynesburg and Case Western Reserve and falling only to John Carroll. Kaison Tanabe ’13 at 133 lbs., captain Ces Antista ’13 at 141 lbs. and Foote at 285 lbs. led the team, all finishing 3-0 on the day. The day was also highlighted by a breakout performance from Jorge Lopez ’16 at 149 lbs., who finished 3-0 on the day.
Lopez had a tremendous weekend, going 6-0. Antista finished with an impressive 5-0 record on the weekend.
The team improved from sixth to fifth in the recent New England polls – a jump aided by the first appearance by Tim Garripoli ’16 in the individual rankings. Including Garripoli, who is ranked fifth in the 157-lb. weight class, the Ephs have five ranked wrestlers in the New England individual rankings. Other Ephs changed ranking positions as well. Lopez moved up to first in the 149-lb. weight class. Foote fell one spot in the rankings, now sitting at second in the 285-lb. bracket. Tanabe and Antista both held on to their individual placements, with Tanabe in fifth at 133 lbs. and Antista in second in the 141-lb. weight class.
“Everyone is really buying into the system, which is the combination of not only the coaches and the leadership, but also the effort given by every single one of our wrestlers everyday. I have to say that I feel there is a really team-oriented atmosphere that I haven’t seen out of this team in years,” said Antista.
On Jan. 5, the team competed at the Scott Viera Invitational at Roger Williams, emerging from the invitational with a strong third-place finish. Antista, Foote, Tanabe and Lopez all placed as finalists. Garnering first place in the 149-lb. weight class, Lopez had a remarkable breakout performance.
Prior to the break, the grapplers faced Johnson & Wales, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and Oneonta State on Dec. 8. They lost their first and last matches, by scores of 31-10 and 24-13, respectively. However, the men handily dispatched WPI 28-9.
The men will host Plymouth State this Saturday at 1 p.m.