The season is over half way complete and there are only 62 days remaining until the NCAA tournament. Since my last update, we have competed and won the Southern Scuffle and placed sixth at the National Dual meet championships. At the Southern Scuffle we knocked off perennial powerhouse Minnesota, lead by three champions and a runner-up. Kyle Dake, Mack Lewnes and Cam Simaz were the champions and Troy Nickerson lost by default. Troy’s default occurred thirty seconds into the match. We hope to have Troy back in time for next week’s Friday night match against Lehigh. We faced a rigorous schedule at the National Duals and walked away with hard fought victories over Wisconsin, Missouri and Maryland. We dropped matches against Ohio State and Boise State. As opposed to rehashing much of what most of you already know I will focus my update on my observations of the team and what we need to do to reach our ultimate goals of winning the Ivy, Eastern and NCAA championships.
125 Troy Nickerson: Troy looked better than ever as he cruised through the Southern Scuffle competition. The only thing he needs to do is stay/get healthy. With only 65 days remaining in his career I plan on letting him wrestle in most of our upcoming dual meets.
125 Frank Perrelli:The “silver lining” to Troy’s injury is the emergence of Perrelli. Frank has demonstrated to everyone that he will be favored to All-American next year. Frank has beaten numerous highly rated wrestlers and has been ranked as high as 8th in the country. In order to take the next step and reach his ultimate goal of winning a national title, Frank will need to learn to wrestle a more “complete” match. He has a very disconcerting habit of taking momentary mental breaks at extremely inopportune times. This habit has cost him a couple matches this year and he has very few loses on his record.
133 Mike Grey: For reasons beyond my knowledge, Mike has never been a great first semester wrestler. True to form Mike started off slow again this year and has once again picked it up after the winter break. Mike faced a brutal National Duals schedule and came out with a 4-1 record. He lost a tough match to the #3 ranked wrestler but on the positive side he avenged an earlier loss by defeating Bell of Maryland by major decision. He had a number of other dominating victories and was rewarded with a #6 national ranking. I don’t mean to put too much emphasis on ranking but they can make your NCAA tournament a little easier so they are not meaningless.
141 Kyle Dake:If you have not been following Kyle, you are the only one. Kyle has almost immediately become one of the nation’s most prolific wrestlers. The kid has no fear and can beat you from any position. Stylistically he is very similar to Jordan Leen, when Jordan was a junior. He is currently ranked #1.
149 Corey Manson: If we didn’t have wrestlers like we have in the first three weight classes, Corey would be enjoying a fine season. However the bar for greatness has been set very high by many of our current wrestlers so Corey’s improvement does not get the recognition that it deserves. Last year Corey finished with a 9-14 record and at this time last year he was 3-9. He is currently 14-9 with a much easier schedule on the horizon. Corey will most likely not win a national title but his contribution to the program is priceless. He is a tireless worker and makes his coaches and teammates proud every time he steps on the mat. Corey can qualify for the NCAA’s but needs to continue to work on getting off bottom and finishing quicker on his shots. He has 52 days to accomplish this task.
157 John Basting:Not unlike Corey, John’s contribution to the team has gone highly recognized. John has been a backup for Jordan Leen for the past three years and most recently to DJ Meagher. DJ will not be returning to the team this year so the position belongs to John. It seems that every year we have a situation where a senior gets the unexpected opportunity to start. We are fortunate that John has trained like a starter for the past three years in preparation for this moment. We have an outstanding JV schedule; therefore John has had far more competition leading up to this moment than a typical non-starter at any other school. I expect a tight EIWA team race and I would not be surprised if John’s team points make the difference in our winning the title.
165 Justin Kerber: Justin has been inconsistent thus far. He has adjusted to the weight but has formed some bad habits due to his knee injury. I fully expect to see Justin improve dramatically as he continues to gain confidence in his health. His struggles are all the result of his time off and rest assured he will be back to normal before the EIWA tournament.
174 Mack Lewnes: Mack has yet to have had an offensive point scored on him in any of his twenty-four victories. I believe the last time he was scored upon was when I took him down in practice. Of course he was not looking when I jumped him from behind but it still counts in my book. No rematch is scheduled.
184 Steve Bosak: Steve has had a great introductory campaign. He is extremely tough on himself and expects to win every match. He is currently 19-9 with six of his loses coming at the hands of top eight ranked wrestlers. Steve is dangerous on top but sometimes holds on too long. As he gains confidence on his feet and on bottom I believe this will no longer be as big of an issue. Like most young wrestlers, Steve will greatly benefit from a less strenuous second semester schedule.
197 Cameron Simaz: Cam picked up where he left off last season. He is currently 23-3 and has defeated many of the country’s top wrestlers. Cam’s two biggest improvements from last season are in his leg attack defense and just overall physical strength. His strength gains are a direct result of his obsessive strength training regimen. He has lifted religiously since last March until now and the results are apparent.
285 Josh Arnone: Josh has not been able to live up to my lofty expectations for him but he is still working hard has had a respectable 8-4 season. It is hard to be satisfied with Josh’s results only because we know how good he could be if he were consistently healthy. I still believe Josh will improve as he continues to figure out the nuances of the 285 pound weight class.
285 Taylor Moore: Taylor is 11-7 and has been a consistent replacement for Josh. Taylor is a solid wrestler who we can count on to wrestle at a moment’s notice. Taylor has beaten many very good opponents and I believe would place in the top four at the EIWA’s if Josh were unable to compete.
285 Oney Snyder, Styker Lane:Two names that you have not heard much about this year are Snyder and Lane. Oney is sitting out the second semester and Lane was injured in the semi-finals of the Binghamton Open in November. Styker has not been medically cleared to compete and I am not confident he will receive the necessary medical clearance in time for the EIWA. If he does I do not anticipate that he will be in shape to compete for the starting role.
As most of you already now Adam passed on December 26. Adam fought a courageous fight for twenty-one months and stayed positive and determined up until the end. We will honor Adam and his family at the Jan. 31 Cornell vs. Iowa State dual meet. I hope that everyone who is within driving distance will make every effort to help us honor Adam by attending the dual meet.
Studying with Koll
Congratulations to Justin Kerber, Quetin Leith, and Derek Schreiner for earning over 4.0 in the fall semester. It is rather apparent who used my tutoring services!
That’s all for now. I will make sure to get something out before the Lehigh match. As always, all the best and no spell check! – Rob
Dual Meet Ranking