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January 5, 2012

Wrestling Update - 2

Photo courtesy of Cornell Athletic Communications

PRINCETON, N.J. -- Two months into the 2011-12 season, Cornell still finds itself in the top-five of the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA)/USA Today Poll, coming in tied at No. 4 in the latest rankings. The Big Red is joined in the poll by Penn, which is in the receiving votes category.

Intermat has Cornell listed as the No. 5 team, while Harvard comes tied at No. 29, Penn is No. 32 and Columbia and Princeton are among seven teams tied at No. 54. The Ivy League features 12 wrestlers ranked individually across six weight classes, including Cornell’s Kyle Dake (No. 1 at 157) and Cam Simaz (No. 1 at 197).

NWCA/USA Today Division I Coaches Poll as of Jan. 3

Here is a team-by-team look at the Ivy League squads this season:

Brown (0-0, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Brown competed in the 30th annual Cliff Keen Invitational in Las Vegas. The Bears tied for 28th out of 34 teams in the event, recording one placewinner. Brown opens its duals action with a tri-meet at Rutgers, where the Bears will face Rider and the No. 20/24 Scarlet Knights.

Individual Highlights: Freshman Ophir Bernstein placed seventh at 184-pounds in the Cliff Keen Invitational to lead the Bears, defeating the No. 9 seed Timothy McCall of Wisconsin in the process. Fellow classmate Ricky McDonald wrestled at 174 and gave No. 6 seed Ethan Headlee of Pittsburgh all he could handle, eventually falling, 2-0.

Brown’s Return to the Mats: Jan. 6 at No. 20/24 Rutgers; vs. Rider

Columbia (0-0, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Columbia competed in two tournaments in December, wrestling in the Nittany Lion Open in State College, Pa., and the Mat Town Invitational in Lock Haven, Pa. No team scores were recorded in the Nittany Lion Open but five Lions placed in the event. Columbia took fifth out of 11 teams in the Mat Town Invitational, placing six wrestlers.

Individual Highlights: Senior Kyle Gilchrest led Columbia in the Nittany Lion Open with a third-place showing at 133-pounds. Junior Steve Santos took fourth at 149, sophomore Adam Fondale won seventh at 165, junior Stephen West finished in sixth-place at 174 and senior Kevin Lester placed sixth in the heavyweight class. In the Mat Town Invitational, junior Jake O’Hara finished a career-best second in the 157-pound division while West and Lester each placed third at 174 and 285, respectively. Senior Eren Civan made his season debut with a strong showing, taking fourth at 165. Sophomore Matt Bystol was fifth at 141 and junior Robert Dyar was sixth at 125. O’Hara is ranked No. 20 at 157 in the latest Intermat poll.

Columbia’s Return to the Mats: Jan. 7 at the Pitt Duals

Cornell (1-0, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Cornell is ranked tied for No. 4 in the country in the latest NWCA/USA Today Division I Coaches Poll and No. 5 by Intermat. The Big Red took part in the Cliff Keen Invitational in Las Vegas, taking sixth out of 34 teams. Cornell placed four wrestlers, including one champion and two second-place finishers.

Individual Highlights: Junior Kyle Dake won the individual title at 157-pounds, defeating the No. 4 and No. 7 seeds en route to the championship. Seniors Steve Bosak (184) and Frank Perrelli (125) each took second in their respective weight classes and sophomore Mike Nevinger took eighth at 141. Five wrestlers are ranked in the latest Intermat individual poll, including Dake (No. 1 at 157) and senior Cam Simaz (No. 1 at 197). Bosak is ranked No. 4 at 184, Perrelli is No. 6 at 125 and Nevinger is No. 19 at 141.

Cornell’s Return to the Mats: Jan. 8 vs. No. 12/8 Lehigh

Harvard (0-0, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Harvard wrestled in two tournaments in December, the Cliff Keen Invitational in Las Vegas and the Midlands Championships in Evanston, Ill. The Crimson finished in a tie for 15th-place out of 34 teams with a score of 34.5, placing two. In the Midlands Championships, Harvard placed 32nd out of 43 teams.

Individual Highlights: Junior Steven Keith placed third at 133 in the Cliff Keen Invitational, upsetting the No. 2 and No. 5 seeds en route to the consolation championship. Freshman James Fox was a placewinner for the third time this season with a seventh-place finish at 197. Keith then took eighth in the Midlands Championships, recording a pair of major decision victories in the process. Keith is ranked No. 13 at 133 in the latest Intermat poll, while junior Walter Peppelman comes in at No. 5 at 157.

Harvard’s Return To The Mats: Jan. 6 at No. 20/24 Rutgers; vs. Rider

Penn (3-3, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Penn is ranked No. 30 in the NWCA/USA Today Coaches Poll and No. 32 by Intermat. The Quakers competed in three dual events and one tournament in December, defeating Bloomsburg, 26-12, before falling to No. 12/8 Lehigh, 21-15, and No. 13/13 Maryland, 21-15. In the Midlands Championships in Evanston, Ill., Penn placed 15th out of 43 teams.

Individual Highlights: Senior Zack Kemmerer, ranked No. 4 at 141-pounds, earned his 100th career victory in the Quakers’ win over Bloomsburg. Freshman 165-pounder Lorenzo Thomas pinned his opponent in 6:17, sophomore Erich Smith won at 184, Micah Burak earned a decision at 197 and freshman Anthony DiLonardo was victorious in the heavyweight class. In the Quakers’ loss to Lehigh, senior Bryan Ortenzio (133), Kemmerer and freshmen Steve Robertson (149) and Ian Korb (174) all recorded victories. Against the Terrapins, Penn’s winners were Ortenzio, Kemmerer, Robertson and Burak. Two Quakers placed in the Midlands Championships. Burak became Penn's first Midlands finalist since 2004 with a second-place showing while Kemmerer took seventh.

Penn’s Return To The Mats: Jan. 8 vs. Rider

Princeton (2-6, 0-0 Ivy League)
Team Results: Princeton competed in three duals events and one tournament in December and is ranked tied at No. 54 by Intermat. The Tigers hosted a tri-meet at Dillon Gym, defeating Old Dominion, 18-14, but coming up short against Binghamton, 33-15. The Tigers then faced in-state rival Rutgers, ranked No. 20/24 in the country, and fell, 29-7. Princeton traveled to Lewisburg, Pa., to take part in the Bucknell quad-meet. The Tigers dropped their first two matches to Bucknell, 27-9, and Central Michigan, 28-9, before bouncing back with a shutout of Sacred Heart, 51-0. Princeton then competed in the Midlands Championships in Evanston, Ill., placing 19th out of 43 teams.

Individual Highlights: Senior Daniel Kolodzik (157) led the way with five victories in the six duals events while junior Garrett Frey (125), freshman Chris Perez (133) and sophomore Adam Krop (141) each earned four victories apiece in Princeton’s duals action. In the Midlands Championships, Krop upset the No. 6 seed en route to a third-place finish at 141-pounds. His only loss was a 3-2 defeat at the hands of the top-seed, Iowa’s Montell Marion. Krop is ranked No. 20 at 141-pounds in the latest Intermat poll. Kolodzik was Princeton’s other placewinner in the event, taking eighth at 157.

Princeton’s Return To The Mats: Jan. 7 at Pitt Duals