Wrestlers Take Navy Classic
Nov. 19, 2011
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - With the help of five individual champions, the Navy wrestling team cruised to the Navy Classic title on Saturday at Wesley Brown Field House in Annapolis. For the Mids, it was their 19th Navy Classic title in the tournament's 34-year history.
Navy topped the seven-team field with a total of 147.5 points - 51.5 ahead of second-place West Virginia. Bucknell took third place with 88.5 points.
"Today was a good effort from the guys," said Navy head coach Bruce Burnett. "We have some injuries right now and we're still making some technical mistakes that we have to correct and improve. Our conditioning is certainly getting better.
"I was proud of some of the younger guys today and the way they wrestled. It was an overall team effort and was good to have so many guys compete."
After improving to 7-1 on the season last weekend, Kalil became just the fourth Mid in program history to win three Navy Classic titles as he claimed his third consecutive championship at 133 pounds on Saturday. The 17th-ranked senior captain cruised to the quarterfinals behind a pair of technical falls in the first and second rounds.
Against teammate Ben Creed in the semifinals, Kalil produced another win via tech fall, defeating Creed, 20-5.
In the final, Kalil met up with another teammate in third-seeded freshman Colton Rasche, who he topped, 7-3, to earn the title.
At 141 pounds, Navy's top finisher was Raymond Borja, who fell in the finals via a 12-3 major decision to the top seed Nathan Pennesi of West Virginia.
Navy's Alex Johnson picked up fifth place at 141 in defeating No. 3 seed Richard Durso of Franklin & Marshall, 9-6.
Like the 133-pound final, the 149-pound championship also featured a pair of Mids in the third-seed, Locksmith, and fourth-seed, Peyton Walsh.
Locksmith made his way to the final with a trio of wins via decision, including a 3-1 win over teammate Eric Filipowicz in the semifinals.
Walsh met West Virginia's Brutus Scheffel in the semifinals, who previously defeated the No. 1 seed Ryan Medved of Gardner-Webb. In the semifinal dual, Walsh topped Scheffel by the slimmest of margins, 2-1, to earn a berth in the championship bout.
In the final dual, it was Locksmith that came out on top with a 3-1 decision for his second Navy Classic title. Locksmith won the crown at 141 pounds last season as freshman.
At 157 pounds, Navy's top finisher was the No. 2 seed Zach Basich, who placed third. Basich fell in overtime in the semifinals, but rebounded to take the third-place dual with a 6-4 decision over the fourth seed Pierre Frazile of The Citadel.
Bailey wrestled his way the final at 165 pounds with a pair of decisions and then defeated Ty Knepp of George Mason with a 9-1 major decision to take the title.
After taking second place at 165 last season, it was Bailey's first Navy Classic championship.
"I thought Mason got better with every bout today," said Burnett.
The top-seeded, 174-pounder Huntley pinned Brad Bailey of Franklin & Marshall at 2:09 for his first win of the day. In the semifinals, he took on teammate Gary Albright and scored an 8-3 win to set up a meeting with the second seed Lance Bryson of West Virginia.
In a hard fought bout, it was Huntley that held a slight edge and defeated Bryson, 3-1, to claim his second Navy Classic title. Huntley won the 165-pound championship as a freshman.
"Huntley was very good for us today," Burnett said.
Albright, who fell to Huntley in the semifinals, defeated fellow Mid Colton Van't Hof, 8-2, to take fifth place at 174.
At 184 pounds, the Mids' 13th-ranked Rebertus was looking to join Kalil as a three-time Navy Classic champ.
Rebertus, the top seed, defeated Coriston Smith of George Mason in his first match, then topped Jamie Westwood of Bucknell, 6-1, to get into the finals.
In the championship, Rebertus dominated The Citadel's John Duane, scoring an 18-2 technical fall win.
"Luke really opened up in the finals, so we feel good about that," said Burnett.
Paul Rands worked his way into the finals at 197 with a pair of solid victories. He scored a major decision over The Citadel's Luke Johnson, 12-1, in his first match and then pinned the No. 2 seed Travis Porter of Gardner-Webb at 1:55 to get into the title match.
Facing the top-seeded Kelby Smith of The Citadel, Rands hung tough for most of the bout, but wound up falling, 5-2.
Also at 197, Navy junior Ben Hatef took home fifth place when he pinned fifth-seed Colin Ely of Franklin & Marshall at 1:56.
In the final bout of the day, the No. 1 seed in the heavyweight division, Justin Kozera of Gardner-Webb, dealt Navy's Chance Rauscher a last-second defeat in the finals. With the score tied 1-1 for most of the bout, Kozera went on the offensive in the final :10 and scored a takedown with seconds left to win, 3-1.
Other Mids winning their championship-bracket matches on Saturday included Creed (fifth place, 133), Filipowicz (fifth place, 149) and James Mannier (third place, 164).
Navy will be off next weekend and will return to action on Dec. 2-3 at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational.
"We'll get to see a lot of ranked teams in Las Vegas and find out where we are on a national level," said Burnett.
Final Team Scores
1. Navy, 147.5
2. West Virginia, 96
3. Bucknell, 88.5
4. The Citadel, 77.5
5. Gardner-Webb, 62.0
6. George Mason, 50.5
7. Franklin & Marshall, 29.0