#6 Lehigh Hands Navy First Dual Loss of the Season
BETHLEHEM, Pa. — Sixth-ranked Lehigh (8-1, 6-0 EIWA) showed its strength and depth on Sunday afternoon at Grace Hall in Bethlehem, Pa, dealing the Navy wrestling team (5-1, 2-1 EIWA) its first dual loss of the season, 34-3. In what marked the 98th meeting in the historic series, the Mountain Hawks have now won eight in a row against the Mids.
“We had the mindset and momentum to look for an upset opportunity in today’s EIWA matchup against nationally-ranked Lehigh,” said fourth-year Navy head coach Joel Sharratt. “I have been very happy with the effort of our young guys the last few weeks and because of a few injuries we have been fortunate to have some of these young guys gain valuable match experience. Today was a valuable lesson learned by our wrestlers on the power of team and momentum. Lehigh was a strong and highly-ranked opponent for us, but it had its share of injuries which made me believe we had a real opportunity to keep our success in team competition rolling.”
Lehigh won the first seven matches of the dual that featured two pins in the first three matches. Defending 125-pound National Champion Darian Cruz pinned Navy rookie Aslan Kilic (Marietta, Ga.) with 24 seconds remaining in the match to give the Mountain Hawks the early momentum, while 12th-ranked Luke Karam used a cradle in the second period to not only break the scoreless tie, but turned 18th-ranked Nicholas Gil (Crystal Lake, Ill.) for the fall at 3:21.
Sharratt inserted 19th-ranked Jared Prince (So. / Safety Harbor, Fla.) into the lineup at 149 punds in hopes of sparking the Mids, but Prince, who wrestled and won an individual title at the Shorty Hitchcock Memorial Classic the day prior, was unable to muster enough offense to get past Lehigh’s Cortlandt Schuyler who knocked off two nationally-ranked wrestlers in as many days.
“I put Jared in a challenging situation to test him in an EIWA event and he was just not ready after competing yesterday,” said Sharratt. “Corey Wilding is a battle-tested senior, but it was my choice to put Jared out against an opponent who was very counter oriented. I felt that style matchup would go in our favor, but it did not in today’s dual.”
Lehigh’s Ian Brown avenged a loss at the Southern Scuffle with a 7-3 win over Navy senior Zack Davis (Granger, Ind.) at 157. Brown scored the opening takedown and added a two-point near fall and never looked back, giving the Mountain Hawks a 21-0 lead at intermission.
Navy got its lone with of the afternoon at 184 pounds where 18th-ranked Michael Coleman (Sr. / Hudson, Ohio) recorded first and third period takedowns to score a 5-1 victory over Lehigh’s Andrew Price.
“We have several guys who are breaking through with the confidence to reach their full potential and sometimes a tough loss can help get guys over that hump,” added Sharratt. “Many hard, but valuable lessons were learned in today’s dual meet. Our guys are tough, strong and hard headed, so we will pull our bootstraps up and get to work preparing for the next competition on our schedule.”
Navy will be on the road for a pair of duals next weekend. The Mids make the short trip to the nation’s capital on Friday (Jan. 19) to face American at 7:00 pm before making the drive to Durham, N.C. for a Sunday afternoon match (2:00 pm) against Duke.
#6 Lehigh 34, Navy 3
125 | #3 Darian Cruz Fall Aslan Kilic (NAVY) 6:36
133 | Nick Farro dec. Cody Trybus (NAVY) 7-4
141 | #12 Luke Karam Fall #18 Nicholas Gil (NAVY) 3:21
149 | Cortlandt Schuyler dec. #19 Jared Prince (NAVY) 8-6
157 | Ian Brown dec. Zack Davis (NAVY) 7-3
165 | #18 Gordon Wolf dec. #20 Drew Daniels (NAVY) 7-2
174 | #5 Jordan Kutler major dec. AJ Alford (NAVY) 11-3
184 | #18 Michael Coleman (NAVY) dec. Andrew Price 5-1
197 | Jake Jakobsen dec. Steban Cervantes (NAVY) 6-1
285 | Christian Colucci dec. Austin Faunce (NAVY) 2-0
### Go Navy ###