The Mountain Hawks finished off the competition with ease on Sunday, taking home their third straight team EIWA Championship with a total of 145 points over the two days.
Lehigh placed seven wrestlers into the finals, and came away with three individual titles. For the second straight year, the Mountain Hawks will send eight wrestlers on to the NCAA Championships.
At 125, Mario Stuart finished 2nd for the third time in his career, falling 8-2 to Penn’s Matt Valenti. Earlier, Stuart defeated Mike Mormile of Cornell to reach the finals. At 133, Matt Ciasulli took second as well in his first time at EIWAs, losing to top-ranked Travis Lee of Cornell in a 13-4 major decision. Ciasulli shut out Army’s Bernard Gardner 4-0 in the semis.
At 141, Cory Cooperman was upset in the EIWA final, losing a close 10-8 decision to Penn’s Doug McGraw. McGraw scored two takedowns in the third period to force overtime, and then got a takedown in the first overtime to win by sudden victory. Cooperman pinned Nate Gulosh of Navy to reach the finals for the second straight year.
Matt Anderson earned a wildcard entry to the NCAA Championships at 149, by virtue of his fourth-place finish at the EIWAs. Anderson defeated Greg Austin of Rutgers to earn a spot in the consolation finals, where he lost a major decision 12-3 to Dustin Minotti of Cornell.
Derek Zinck won a courageous battle to reach the finals at 157, defeating Scott Roth of Cornell 8-3 in the semis despite sustaining a painful hip pointer. As a safety precaution, Zinck forfeited the final to Philip Simpson of Army, and will rest up for his second entrance to the NCAAs.
After losing their first four chances at individual titles, the Mountain Hawks rebounded to take three in a row. At 165, Troy Letters repeated as EIWA champ with a 9-4 decision over Joe Mazzurco of Rutgers. Letters picked up a major decision in the semis, beating Michael Barikian of Navy 17-7.
Brad Dillon followed with his second straight EIWA crown, scoring a 7-4 decision over Andy Roy of Rutgers. Dillon majored Tyler Baier of Cornell 14-4 in the semis.
Travis Frick won his first EIWA title at 184, as he defeated Rudy Medini from Rutgers 5-3 in the finals. Frick made it to the finals for the first time with a 6-4 win over Jerry Rinaldi of Cornell in the semis.
Matt Cassidy and Paul Weibel each had sixth-place finishes for the Mountain Hawks at 197 and heavyweight, respectively.
Head coach Greg Strobel was happy for the winners.
“Travis Frick was great out there, he really fought hard. I think Letters wasn’t happy to give up a takedown, but he is still a winner, and Dillon fought a really great technical fight against a tough, tough opponent.”
Lehigh had the team title clinched before the championship matches even began, and won back-to-back-to-back for the first time since 1975-77. Matt Ciasulli picked up the Sheridan Award for the most pins in the quickest time, pinning two opponents in a total time of 4:01. Cornell’s Travis Lee was named the EIWA’s Outstanding Wrestler.
Harvard’s Jesse Jantzen won the title at 149, and took home the Fletcher Award for most career team points. Other EIWA titlists were Cornell’s Matt Greenberg at 197 and Penn’s Matt Feast at heavyweight
Posted on Monday, March 08, 2004