With a third-place finish in the 157 lb. class at the NCAA Div. III Championships, wrestling co-captain Jorge Lopez ’16 became the first four-time All-American in the history of the program.
In the semifinals, Lopez squared off against Drew Wagenhoffer of Wartburg, who entered the match at 20-1. Lopez opened with a takedown that was reversed by Wagenhoffer, but a Lopez escape gave him a 3-2 lead that he took into the second period.
Wagenhoffer was in the down position to start the second period, but, after half a minute, he escaped to tie the match at 3.
The match remained tied at the beginning of the third period, which opened with Lopez in the down position. Lopez executed an escape to take a 4-3 lead with 1:29 remaining. In the final seconds of the period, Lopez escaped to tie the match at 5-all and send it into sudden victory.
Wagenhoffer executed a takedown in the final seconds of the first sudden victory round and defeated Lopez 7-5. Lopez was next paired up against No. 4 seed Logan Meister of Ferrum in a match that would send the winner into the third-place match. Lopez started the match with a takedown and a near fall, registering six points before Meister got a point on an escape. At the end of two periods, Lopez held a commanding lead of 12-3 after another takedown and another near fall.
Lopez expanded his lead to a 10-point margin with an escape to start the final period and ended up recording a major decision victory, 14-5, to advance to the third-place match, where Lopez faced Larry Cannon of Messiah. Although Lopez gave up an early takedown to Cannon in the first period, he then assumed control of the match. Lopez claimed his third consecutive third-place finish at 157 with a 10-8 victory, sealing All-American honors. Lopez finished the season with a record of 26-3 and a career record of 113-18 to go along with his four All-American designations.
“Jorge Lopez makes Williams history as our first 4-time All-American,” Head Coach Scott Honecker said. “I can’t fairly explain how much he had to persevere through to achieve this. Wrestling the way he did and making the podium in his last college tournament is nothing short of amazing.”
In his first bout on the national stage at 141, Brendon Seyfried ’19 was matched up with No. 5 seed Justin Kihn from Heidelberg. Seyfried battled hard but fell 5-3, placing him into the wrestle back bracket.
Co-captain Tim Garripoli ’16 was paired against No. 5 Logan Hermsen from Wisconsin – Stevens Point. Hermsen was in control throughout and recorded a 7-0 win, sending Garripoli to the wrestle back bracket. Garripoli ended the year with a record of 31-12.
Co-captain Chris Chorzepa ’17 opened up a 5-2 lead at the end of two periods in his first match battling A.J. McBroom of Central College (Iowa). Chorzepa emerged victorious, registering a 7-4 win to move to 40-0 on the year. Chorzepa became the third Eph this year to win his 100th career bout, following Garripoli and Lopez. In his second match, Chorzepa faced Grant Wedepohl of Wisconsin-Platteville. Chorzepa took an early 2-0 lead, but Wedepohl came on strong in the second period and racked up a takedown and a near fall to establish a 6-2 lead on his way to an 8-5 win. The loss stopped Chorzepa’s season win streak at 40. Chorzepa’s opponent in the wrestle back bracket was William Gockel-Figge from NYU, who defeated him by a score of 9-5 to end Chorzepa’s season at 40-2. The defeat snapped his string of All-American honors at two.
With Nationals concluded, the team graduates Garripoli, Lopez, Jonathan Berry ’16, Anthony Brooks ’16 and Daniel Seidita ’16.