-- By Dom Vazquez '19 --
MIDDLETOWN, Conn. – The Wesleyan University wrestling team celebrated its seniors on Sunday afternoon in Silloway Gymnasium The Cardinals faced tough competition in New England College and the University of Southern Maine, while taking the time to highlight the career achievements of seniors Zack Murillo, Shane Ross, James Matias, Dylan Jones, and Karl Seitz.
Wesleyan started the afternoon in dominating fashion, defeating New England College 34-5. In the final match of the day, the Cardinals traded wins with Southern Maine throughout the weight classes, eventually falling short of victory by a score of 21-17. Wesleyan concluded its dual meet schedule with a 5-9 record.
- The first dual of the day for the Cardinals pitted them against New England College, as Tristan Stetson (133) claimed the first victory with a 7-5 decision after an impressive takedown while tied in the third period. Matias piled on the team points with a pin in the 141-pound weight class, while Ross secured a major decision with an 18-4 win at 149.
- Aaron Goldman then earned a close 4-3 decision victory at 157 after a much-needed last minute escape. Roy Forys continued Wesleyan's winning ways at 165 with a pin in the second period. Following that, Duncan Kruetter won a 12-4 decision at 184, while Simon Chee won a quick pin at 197. Harrison Karp finished the match in strong fashion for the Cardinals with at 7-4 victory at the 285-pound weight class.
- The Cardinals second and final match of the day had them facing Southern Maine with a huge contest to open the dual. Peter del Gallo of Southern Maine, the number one ranked 125-pound wrestler in the country, squared off against Murillo, with Murillo securing the huge upset after narrowly defending a last second single leg by del Gallo. Murillo won with a 3-2 decision.
- In his first match of the day, Amir Daouk lost via last-second pin at 133 after an impressive sequence of takedowns and reversals. Matias finished his day undefeated with a 12-1 major decision at 141, while both Ross and Goldman suffered close decision losses at 149 and 157, respectively.
- Forys dominated at 165 with a 10-1 major decision and Marco Gaita avenged a loss earlier in the day with an impressive 7-4 victory at 174. After Kreutter lost a 9-4 decision at 184, Chee put the Cardinals ahead in team points with a hard-fought 2-0 win at 197. With Wesleyan leading 17-15, the dual came down to the final match at 285 where Karp was pinned by Southern Maine's Mike Risti early in the first period.
- Murillo, Ross, Goldman, Kreutter, Karp, and Gaita all finished the day 1-1, while Stetson went 1-0. Matias, Forys and Chee all went 2-0.
- The Cardinals will be competing in the NEWA Futures Tournament at Western New England University next Sunday, February 26th, with action set to kick off at noon.