By Christine Houghton
On Saturday, Feb. 23 and Sunday, Feb. 24 the wrestling team traveled to Brockport, New York to compete in the NCAA Regionals, where it advanced nine wrestlers to the finals.
Taking second out of 18 teams, the Lions were able to advance five wrestlers to the NCAA Division III Championship on Sunday.
After the first day of wrestling, the team advanced the following nine wrestlers to the Sunday match— freshman Johnny Garda at 165 pounds, junior Dan Kilroy at 174 pounds, senior Ryan Budzek at 149 pounds, sophomore Robert Dinger at 141 pounds, sophomore Jake Giordano at 133 pounds, junior Dan Ortega at 125 pounds, sophomore Dan Surich at 184 pounds, senior JT Beirne at 165 pounds and freshman Thomas Marretta at heavyweight.
Giordano went on to win both his matches and will make his first collegiate trip to the championship.
Kilroy will travel to his second championship after a shutout and a decision.
Budzek took second in his weight class and will make his second career national team appearance.
Beirne and Dinger will make their first national team appearances after taking third place in their respective weight classes.
Lions who did not advance to the championship include Ortega, Garda, Surich and Marretta. Ortega and Garda took fourth, while Surich and Marretta placed seventh.
Head coach Joe Galante and his staff were named Regional Coach and Regional Coaching Staff of the Year after the tournament.
The remaining five wrestlers will travel to Roanoke, Virginia on Friday, March 8 to compete in the NCAA Championships.