Navy Wrestling Faces American, Honors Seniors on Saturday
Navy's seniors will be honored prior to the match.
Feb. 8, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Winners of each of its last three duals and last weekend's All-Academy Championship, the Navy wrestling team looks to close out its home schedule with a win on Saturday evening when it plays host to American at Wesley Brown Field House beginning at 7:00 pm. Additionally, Navy will honor its 13 senior wrestlers and support staff in a prematch ceremony at approximately 6:45 pm.
Following a tough 19-15 loss at home to Lehigh to begin the second half of the season, the Mids have since been a much different team. A week after its loss to the Mountain Hawks, Navy traveled to Maryland where it knocked off the 23rd-ranked Terps, 22-18. The following week, Navy pounded North Carolina, 27-6, before scoring a dramatic 19-15 victory over Rutgers. Both the Maryland and Rutgers matches came down to the final bout with junior 141-pound Joe Locksmith (Kissimmee, Fla.) coming up with a pin against the Terps and sophomore 165-pound Peyton Walsh (Glen Allen, Md.) winning by decision against the Scarlet Knights.
Five of the Mids' 10-man lineup have reached 20 wins this season, including senior 157-pound Bobby Barnhisel (River Forest, Ill.). Ranked 14th nationally, Barnhisel owns a team-best 27-5 record, including a 3-1 dual mark this season. He has won four individual tournament titles this season and is coming off a solid performance at the All-Academy Classic a week ago where he was able to avenge an earlier loss in the season to The Citadel's Mathew Frisch, while taking a 7-5 victory over 16th-ranked Joshua Kreimier of Air Force in the finals.
Nineteenth-ranked Mason Bailey (Fairmont, W.Va.), one of four seniors in the Mids' starting lineup, enters the weekend with a 25-12 record at 184 pounds, reaching the 20-win mark for the first time in his career. Coming off his first All-Academy Championship crown, Bailey has had as tough of competition as one could as for this season. He has faced nine ranked wrestlers, including three in dual action this winter and all of which were tight decisions.
Senior team captain Oscar Huntley (Stafford, Va.) has been the epitome of what a teammate should be. Twice in his career he has pushed up from 174 to 197 pounds, including this season. After wrestling most of the first month at 174 pounds, he made the move to 197 pounds to fill a void for the Mids. He's not your typical stop-gap, he's been one of the most reliable wrestlers on the mat for the Mids since making the move and came away from last weekend's All-Academy Championship with an individual title. He has topped 20 wins in each of his last three seasons and is one win shy of capturing 25 which would be a personal high.
Walsh is the only wrestler on the roster who has produced a flawless 5-0 record in dual action this season and stands 24-8 overall. He has won seven consecutive matches heading into the weekend with his last loss coming more than a month ago at the Southern Scuffle.
Freshman Mathew Miller (Edgewood, Md.) has continued Navy's long tradition of having success at 174 pounds. Miller, who was named the EIWA Wrestler of the Week and the NAAA Athlete of the Week, stands 20-4 this season with a 3-2 dual record and is ranked 11th nationally. He has three individual crowns on his resumen, including rolling through last weekend's competition to become just the eighth rookie in program history to win an All-Academy Tournament title. He is 2-4 against ranked foes this season which includes a 9-6 victory two weeks ago over then 12th-ranked Greg Zannetti of Rutgers.
Junior 149-pound Raymond Borja (Virginia Beach, Va.) and senior heavyweight Dan Miller (Berlin, Md.) are just a handful of wins away from the 20-win milestone. Borja was inserted into the starting lineup on Jan. 19 in place of an injured Zach Basich. Borja is 6-0 since entering the lineup and during that same time frame, Navy is 3-0 in dual matches and won the All-Academy Championship. Miller, meanwhile, boasts a 17-10 record including a 4-1 dual meet mark. His only dual blemish this season was an 8-5 decision against Rutgers' Billy Smith.
Led by second-year head coach Teague Moore, American enters the weekend with a 5-6 record with wins over George Mason (23-9), Harvard (21-9), Stanford (24-14), NC State (24-16) and Binghamton (26-14). Its losses have come against Maryland (23-21), Old Dominion (23-9), Lehigh (30-12), Hofstra (21-9) and Columbia (24-13). Redshirt freshman David Terao, who is ranked fifth in the EIWA, leads the way with a 21-11 record at 125 pounds, including a 7-3 mark in dual meets. Meanwhile, junior heavyweight Blake Herrin has put together a 9-1 dual record and is 20-6 overall and is ranked third in the EIWA.
Navy holds a 7-1 series advantage against American, including a 3-1 lead in matches held in Annapolis. Each of the last two duals have come down to the final match as American dealt the Mids' a 19-17 blow in Annapolis on Jan. 16, 2009, while the Mids scored an 18-17 victory in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 8, 2010, in what was the last time the two programs met.
Admission to Saturday night's match is $7 for adults and $5 for students (18 & under). As a reminder, fans are encouraged to park at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium and ride the shuttle over to the Naval Academy grounds. Access to the grounds is limited to those cars with a Department of Defense sticker.
Promotions Camper Reunion 2 - Campers receive free admission by wearing their Navy Wrestling camp t-shirt. Campers can enter at the match to win a free session of camp for the 2013 summer. NFCU Night 2 - All NFCU members receive the group ticket rate by showing their NFCU debit card or checks. Youth Wrestling Night - All youth wrestling teams receive $3 admission by purchasing their tickets online in advance. Youth Group Night - All church youth groups can attend the match for $3 admission when they purchase their tickets in advance. Alumni Night - All Navy Wrestling Alumni are invited back to attend this match and receive the $3 group ticket rate when tickets are purchased in advance. Family Night Out - For $22, a family receives four tickets, four hot dogs, and four Coca-Cola products. Social Saturday - Check the Navy Athletics Facebook page and twitter feed for a special Wrestling deal!