Rutgers wrestling saw six Scarlet Knights place at the Midland Championships on Friday in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. The team produced 85 points resulting in a seventh place finish out of 46 teams come. Sixteen Scarlet Knights competed overall during the event.
Three wrestlers competed in third place matches on Friday night highlighted by No. 14 Sammy Alvarez winning the bronze with a 10-5 decision over Brian Courtney (Virginia – unattached). No. 12 Brian Soldano lost to Neal Antrassian of Virginia 12-6 at 184 pounds. Also No. 18 Dean Peterson suffered a medical forfeit to Harvard’s Diego Sotelo. Both wrestlers finished in fourth place of their respective weight classes.
In addition, No. 9 Joe Heilmann finished in fifth place at 133 pounds after Ryan Crookman of Lehigh had to take a medical forfeit. Andrew Clark had a memorable run at 157 pounds before finishing in sixth place after losing 3-0 to No. 16 Garrett Model of Wisconsin. Heavyweight Boone McDermott finished in eighth place after suffering a medical forfeit to Ben Goldin of Penn.
It was a solid but slightly disappointing performance overall for Rutgers. They had four wrestlers compete in the semifinal rounds on Friday morning but their best finish was Alvarez in third. Even so, the Scarlet Knights did have a half dozen place finishers. In addition, the entire group gained a lot of experience with Big Ten matches looming and postseason tournaments to follow.
Rutgers will next wrestle at Bloomsburg on Friday, January 6 and at Rider on Sunday, January 8 to close out their non-conference schedule. The Scarlet Knights will begin its Big Ten schedule at Indiana on Friday, January 13.
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