Columbia knocks off Binghamton in EIWA opener

VESTAL, N.Y. -- With three seconds left in the match, sophomore Sam Wustefeld, at 197 pounds, took his shot and scored a big takedown to win his match and help propel Columbia Wrestling (1-1, 1-0 EIWA) to a 24-15 road win over Binghamton (2-2, 1-1 EIWA) in its Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association opener on Friday night at the Events Center in Vestal, New York.

Along with Wustefeld, sophomore No. 29 Joe Manchio, first years Andrew Garr, Angelo Rini and Kyle Mosher, along with junior Riley Jacops, all collected wins to help the Lions complete the victory. For the Lions this snaps a three-match losing streak to Binghamton, with the last win coming in 2016 and this is the first win at Binghamton for Columbia since 2015.

HOW IT HAPPENED: The match opened up at 149 pounds, were Garr set the tone for the night, coming out of the gate to take an 8-3 decision of Michael Zarif to put the Lions up 3-0. Garr controlled the action throughout, improving his 2019-20 dual match record to 2-0 and his overall record to 8-8.

Columbia kept rolling, as at 157 pounds, Mosher found himself in a battle with Chris Barker, but piggybacking off of Garr's match, Mosher would get the 3-1 win on a takedown midway through the first sudden victory period. It was a solid takedown from Mosher that earned him the victory at a crucial point of the sudden victory period, and the win improved Mosher's overall record to 14-9 and it gave him his first career dual match win.

At 165 pounds, Jacops would take the victory due to a medical forfeit but Binghamton and the win improved Jacops' record to 14-9, gave him his first dual match win of the season and put the score at 12-0 in Columbia's favor.

The next two matches would go Binghamton's way, with first-year Lennox Wolak falling to Alex Melikian, dec. 9-5, at 174 pounds and sophomore Joe Franzese getting pinned at 1:20 by the No. 3 184-pounder in the nation Lou DePrez, putting the match score at 12-9 with Columbia still in the lead. The pair of Binghamton wins set up the big momentum swinging match at 197 pounds between Wustefeld and Sam DePrez.

Throughout the match at 184 pounds, DePrez and Wustefeld were neck and neck, with DePrez holding a slight lead throughout the match. With the score at 3-2 in DePrez's favor and the clock ticking down in the third period, Wustefeld knew that he had to go, and go he went. As the clock ticked past three seconds, Wustefeld shot and completed a big-time takedown as the buzzer rang to give him a 4-3 decision, and it allowed the Lions to snag back the momentum as the score in the match now sat at 15-9 in Columbia's favor.

With four matches remaining the Lions were in a solid position to add to their lead and pull away from Binghamton, Columbia would drop two of the final four, with sophomore Danny Conley falling at 285 to Joe Doyle (dec. 5-2) and junior Chris Scorese falling to Anthony Sparacio in a 9-3 decision in what was the final match of the night. But in-between those two matches the Lions would collect two more wins, including a pin, that would clinch the win for Columbia.

At 125 pounds, Manchio came out of the gate on fire, taking a 10-0 lead through the first period. But late in the opening period, Manchio decided to end the action pinning Carson Sauriol at 2:41 to lock up six points for Columbia. Following Manchio was Rini, who at 133 pounds, fought hard in his match against Tomasso Frezza, earning a 4-3 decision. For Manchio the win improved his record to 16-4, and it was his fourth win by fall of the season, while for Rini the win bumped his record up to 13-7 and he earned his first career dual match win.

When it was all said and done, the Lions had earned themselves a 24-15 win to put a one in the win column in the first EIWA match of the season.

149 | Andrew Garr (Columbia) def. Michael Zarif (Binghamton), dec. 8-3
157 | Kyle Mosher (Columbia) def. Chris Barker (Binghamton), SV-1 3-1
165 | Riley Jacops (Columbia) wins via medical forfeit
174 | Alex Melikian (Binghamton) def. Lennox Wolak (Columbia), dec. 9-5
184 | No. 3 Lou DePrez (Binghamton) def. Joe Franzese, fall (1:20)
197 | Sam Wustefeld (Columbia) def. Sam DePrez (Binghamton), dec. 4-3
285 | Joe Doyle (Binghamton) def. Danny Conley (Columbia), dec. 5-2
125 | No. 29 Joe Manchio (Columbia) def. Carson Sauriol (Binghamton), fall (2:41)
133 | Angelo Rini (Columbia) def. Tomasso Frezza (Binghamton), dec. 4-3
141 | Anthony Sparacio (Binghamton) def. Chris Scorese (Columbia), dec. 9-3

UP NEXT: Columbia remains on the road, with a quick turnaround as they next head north to Ithaca, New York to face No. 19 Cornell on Saturday, Jan. 11, with that match set to get going at 3 p.m. and it will be broadcast on ESPN+.


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