Cards Knock Off Two Nationally Ranked Teams in Final Dual Matches to End Regular Season at 8-8

2.10.08

Heading to Williams for the final dual matches of the year Sun., Feb. 10, Wesleyan had the formidable task of facing the #23 team in Division III, Oneonta St., and the #28 ranked team, host Williams. The Cardinals stepped it up and produced two victories, 26-12 over Oneonta and 21-18 over Williams. Wesleyan handled Oneonta first on the afternoon, winning six of the eight matches wrestled as Wesleyan forfeited the final heavyweight bout with the match already in hand. Oneonta possesses Division III's top-ranked heavyweight. A key win was Dave Bachy's '10 (photo insert lower left) major decision at 149 which put the Cardinals ahead 11-3. A decision for Zach Rolfe '10 at 157 and a forfeit win at 165 for Josh Berkovic '10 made it 17-3. When Greg Hurd '10 captured his 174-pound bout, 6-5, Wesleyan nearly had a clinch with a 20-3 lead. When Alex Segal '09 only fell by decision, the match belonged to the Cardinals. Dan Bloom '10 (125), Josh Wildes '08 (133) and John Gottfried '09 (197) also were winners for Wesleyan. The Williams match came right down to wire after the Cardinals fell behind 15-3 through five matches. The only winner to that point for Wesleyan was Bachy, who won his ninth straight dual match, defeating the #2-ranked wrestler in New England, 8-7. Berkovic and Hurd both won by decision to make it 15-9. Cam Maloni '09 (photo insert lower right) tied the score by recording a second-period pin. When Gottfried lost by decision, Williams had a three-point lead. It came down to heavyweight Dan Conroy '11 (main photo). Down 1-0 heading into the third period, Conroy got a reversal to go ahead 2-1, put his opponent to his back for a 5-1 lead but kept it going and pinned his adversary with :50 left in the period to make Wesleyan a winner. Conroy was named the New England Wrestling Association Rookie of the Week for his efforts. The next action for the team is the NEWA JV Championships at Springfield Sun., Feb. 17. The final varsity action will be the NEWA Individual Championships, with qualification to the NCAA Championships at stake, at Southern Maine Sat. & Sun., Feb. 23-24.