Williamsport, Pa. - January 11, 2019 - The Springfield College wrestling team went 3-0 in the opening day of at the Budd Whitehill Duals hosted by Lycoming College on Friday, including a pair of come-from-behind victories.
The Pride rallied for a 20-17 victory against Wilkes in its first match of the day before knocking off nationally-ranked Washington & Lee, 20-18. In their third and final match, the Pride coasted to a 24-15 win over Ohio Northern. With the win over W&L, Springfield College head wrestling coach Jason Holder picked up his 100th career dual meet victory.
In their opener against Wilkes, Springfield got off to a great start as Nicholas DeRosa (Billerica, Mass.) delivered a 3-2 win at 125 and Jacques St. Jean (Goffstown, N.H.) recorded a 7-2 decision at 133. After Wilkes got on the board with an overtime victory at 141, Springfield benefitted from a 16-1 technical fall victory by Kearney Gutierrez (Freeport, N.Y.) at 149 to push their lead to 11-3. From there, Wilkes, strung three-straight victories together, including a technical fall at 157 and a pair of decisions at 165 and 174, to earn a 14-11 edge. Seve Burgos (Guilford, Conn.) put the Pride back on top with a 15-6 major decision at 184, but a decision at 197 by Wilkes gave them a 17-15 advantage heading into the final bout. Joseph Fusco (Billerica, Mass.) came through for the Pride with a convincing 19-2 technical fall at 285 to lift Springfield to the 20-17 win.
Going up against Washington and Lee, who was ranked No. 21 in the last NWCA Division III National Rankings, DeRosa allowed Springfield to score the first points of the match after he turned in a 7-3 decision at 125 before Ian Tolotti (Dumont, N.J.) prevailed by a 4-3 decision at 133 to put the Pride on top, 6-0. W&J knotted the dual up at 6-6 after a win by pinfall at 141, and Gutierrez recorded a 4-2 win at 149 to give the Pride an 8-6 advantage after he was docked a point for unsportsmanlike conduct. Nick Monteleone (Hackensack, N.J.) provided some fireworks at 157 with a pin in just 2:46 to push the Pride's cushion to 14-6, only to have W&J storm back with decisions at 165 and 174, and a pin at 184 to regain an 18-14 lead. Burgos pulled Springfield with 18-17 after he scored late in the third for an 8-6 decision, once again setting up a winner-take-all showdown at 285. Fusco came out fast in the first period and held on for a 10-9 decision to give Springfield its second come-from-behind win of the day.
Versus Ohio Northern, Springfield won the first three bouts thanks to a pair of forfeits at 125 and 133 before Michael Vietri (Dumont, N.J.) registered a 4-2 win at 141. ONU would take decisions at 149 and 157, but Ryan Harty (Plymouth, Mass.) later registered a win by a 3-1 decision at 165. The Polar Bears pulled within 18-12 following decisions at 174 and 184, but a forfeit a 197 sealed the win for the Pride as it concluded the day with a 24-15 win.