Grapplers move up to 4th in the latest NEWA coaches poll

Fresh off its No. 4 ranking in the NEWA coaches poll, their highest of the season, and the induction of Jon Dolan ’07 into the NEWA hall of fame, wrestling (10-9) traveled to New York City on Saturday for the New England/Metro Duals at Hunter. The Williams grapplers were missing a few starters due to various injuries, causing them to fall to Roger Williams 21-20. Earlier in the day, the men defeated host Hunter 24-18 after an early loss in the day to The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) 31-12. On Jan. 27 at the NEWA duals, Williams dropped two matches against Johnson & Wales 29-9 and Wesleyan 24-12, after defeating Roger Williams 21-20 and Norwich 33-12. On Jan. 19, Williams crushed Plymouth State 41-6.

Against Roger Williams, some injuries prevented Williams from beating them for the second week in a row. Dan Sedita ’13 at 125 and Daniel Evangelakos ’15 at 133 set the tone early with strong performances. Unfortunately, Roger Williams overpowered the men due to their injuries.

In the victory over Hunter, captain Ces Antista ’13 won his 100th career match, becoming only the ninth Eph to collect 100 wins since 1996. The Ephs were trailing 15-18 when Dan Kurnick ’15 in the 197 lb. weight class came up huge for the Ephs with a pin in 3:27, resulting in a win for the men.

TCNJ was just too strong for Williams, especially due to its confidence from a previous victory against the No. 3 team in the country,

Despite the loss, it was a good day for Antista at 141, Tom Foote ’13 at 285 and Jorge Lopez ’16 at 157. They all swept their matches for the day.

“Our 1-2 record over the weekend does not accurately reflect the performance of the team,” Head Coach Scott Honecker said. “We had a tremendous effort from all of our guys up and down the lineup.  We were missing some of our regular starters due to minor injuries, but the guys stepping in for them turned in an outstanding effort. The weekend was highlighted by a dual victory over Hunter, who we lost to last year. Ces Antista remained consistent going 3-0 on the day and turning in his 100th career win. “Our guys are working hard and we are getting better. If we can maintain our focus we are in a good spot heading in to the postseason,” Honecker said.

At the NEWA duals on Jan. 27, the men started off with back-to-back wins against Roger Williams and Norwich. However, they lost their final two matches of the day to Wesleyan and Johnson & Wales. Foote went 4-0 on the day, leading Williams to its fourth-place finish.

Prior to the duals, the men dispatched Plymouth State 41-6, with strong performances from Lopez, Kurnick and Foote. Only two Ephs suffered losses on the day, but it was too little to make a difference for Plymouth State.

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