At 285 pounds, sophomore Keith Bjorus broke the 19-19 tie against Montclair State University (MSU) to bring home a win for the College on Thursday.
A technical fall cost MSU the 24-19 match in the heavyweight bout. Bjorus capped off a thrilling day on the mat, which saw MSU come from behind to tie the match before the final rounds.
The lower weights got the momentum going with a win by default from sophomore 125-pounder Brian Dempsey and a major decision from junior Niko Vrettos in the 133-pound match.
Sophomore Pat Brady followed with a tech fall at 141-pounds.
The Red Hawks recorded wins in the next five matches, including the 174-pound match up of MSU’s senior Eduard Alaikseyenka and junior Pat Lavin. Alaikseyenka finished second at the NCAA National tournament and is currently ranked first in Division III. He defeated Levin 13-5 to turn the match to MSU’s favor.
As the match drew to a close, junior 175-pounder Nick Vincigueura tied it up with a major decision over MSU’s 184-pound junior Daniel DeJesus.
Saturday’s New England-Metro Dual was less hair-raising for the Lions, who won 35-6 over Roger Williams University, 34-6 over host Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and 50-3 over Williams College.
Junior 165-pounder Sean Flynn added two pins to his record.
Pins in the Roger Williams match came from rookie Mike Braun at 149 pounds and Flynn.
Against WPI, Brady defeated Justin Gonsalves at 141 pounds.
The College men handed Williams an outstanding 50-3 loss. Pins were doled out by sophomore Bob Colombo at 133 pounds, Flynn at 165 pounds and sophomore All-American Paul Vaccaro at 174 pounds.
Sunday’s competition against 13th-ranked Springfield also proved to be an easy romp for the Lions. The team capped off the week with a 28-6 win over the College Pride.
Bjorus notched another exciting final match with his second-period pin against Jason Leckey. Bjorus leads the team with 10 pins.
Senior Greg Ilaria picked up a 9-2 decision to continue his undefeated dual-meet record. Ilaria is a returning NCAA All-American and is currently ranked second in Division III.
Flynn recorded a major decision at 165 pounds.
Two wrestlers ranked in the Top 10 nationally met up in the 197-pound match. Vincigueara, ranked seventh, posted a decision over Tom Medonis, ranked eighth.
The weekend’s action leaves the Lions ranked fifth in Division III and with a 17-3 record in dual meet competition.
Their next meet will be against Wilkes University at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. The home meet will also host Alumni Night.