No. 7-ranked Lions drop first match

Graduate student and captain Dan DiColo grapples with his opponent
Graduate student and captain Dan DiColo grapples with his opponent. (Tom O' Dell).

The Lions’ unscathed season hit a snag on Saturday, Jan. 16, as the No. 7- nationally ranked College lost it’s first dual meet of the year, falling to No. 4 Ithaca College, 25-11. The Lions’ only loss came in the championship meet of the Budd Whitetail Duals, hosted by Lycoming College. The Lions had won 19 consecutive meets prior to their loss to Ithaca.

The Lions fell behind early to the Bombers, dropping their first four bouts by decision. The College bounced back in the mid-weight classes, taking three of four bouts as graduate student Dan DiColo at 157 pounds, freshman Michael Kiley at 165 pounds and junior Mike Denver at 184 pounds were victorious. Two losses in the 197-pound and 285-pound weight classes sealed the Lions’ fate, as they now stand at 14-1.

A strong performance by the College in the tournament semifinals was a highlight, as they defeated No. 15-ranked SUNY-Cortland, 18-15 earlier in the day. Four consecutive wins by DiColo and Denver, as well as freshman Brian Broderick at 174 pounds and sophomore Kyle Packer at 149 pounds earned the Lions their chance at a tournament victory.

On Friday, the College won easily in its first three tournament matches, first shutting out Muskigum College, 48-0, and Rochester College of Technology, 50-0, as well as a 33-4 rout of Olivet College.

The College will look to bounce back tonight, Jan. 20, as it travels to Centenary College for a 7 p.m. start.

Bobby Olivier can be reached at olivier6@tcnj.edu.