PHILADELPHIA -- Drexel wrestling sent out its seven-member senior class in grand fashion with a 27-15 win over nearby rival Penn in the Battle for the Cheesesteak Trophy. Saturday night's win at the Daskalakis Athletic Center is the fifth in a row against the Quakers.
Prior to the action, Drexel paid tribute to departing grapplers Dakota Greene, Brendan Hasson, Michah Watson, Henry Williams, Owen Brooks, Nick Widmann and Ebed Jarrell.
It was an inauspicious start to the night for the Dragons (7-10, 3-5 EIWA) as the Quakers (5-8, 4-5) scored a pair of major decisions at 141 and 149 pounds to jump out to an 8-0 lead.
However, Drexel called Penn and raised its opponent in a big way.
Parker Kropman put the Dragons on the board with a fall against Jon Errico. The 33rd-ranked 157-pounder executed a single-underhook throw from standing to put his opponent in a vulnerable position and eventually squared Errico's shoulders to the mat with just three seconds left in the opening period.
Down 8-6, No. 18 Jarrell sent Drexel ahead for good with a first-period fall of his own. Like Kropman, Jarrell finished the match in a flash, going from a neutral position to a winning one in one fell swoop. With double underhooks, he tossed Jake Lizak to the mat and stuck his shoulders to the ground with just under one minute remaining in the first.
In a night to remember for the redshirt-senior, Jarrell notched the 74th victory of his career and his 21st win by fall, moving him into a two-way tie with Jason Staso (1999-02) for the ninth most in program history.
Sticking to script, 27th-ranked Michael O'Malley shot out of the gates at 174 pounds, hunting another bonus-point victory. As is often the case, the redshirt-freshman took down Neil Antrassian early then went to work on the ground. Only this time, O'Malley could not turn his foe and settled for a 2-0 lead after the first period. The grapplers started on their feet in the second period, but neither side could score. O'Malley tacked on an escape point in the third and collected the riding time point for a 4-0 decision and his 16th win of the season.
John Stout stopped Drexel's run with a decision victory at 184 pounds. After six bouts, the Dragons' lead was 15-11.
The Dragons earned a pair of hard-fought decisions at 197 pounds and heavyweight to shut the door on the Quakers.
No. 28 Bryan McLaughlin avenged his loss in the fourth-place match of the Keystone Classic with a 7-5 decision over No. 29 Cole Urbas. McLaughlin did most of his work in the first period, taking down Urbas three times in the first three minutes.
Sean O'Malley capped his two-win Saturday with a 4-1 decision over Nate Hoaglund at 285 pounds. O'Malley pressed the issue early on, drawing a pair of stall warnings in the first period to take a 1-0 lead. Hoaglund tied the bout with a second-period escape, but the third period was O'Malley's as he went ahead with an escape then sealed the win with a late takedown.
Penn won the last contested match of the night by major decision at 125 pounds before forfeiting at 133 to wrap up the dual.
One final dual this Friday at Northern Illinois awaits the Dragons before postseason action begins. The EIWA Championships run March 6-7 in Bethlehem, Pa.
141: No. 13 Doug Zapf major dec. Tyler Williams, 11-1 - Penn 4, Drexel 0
149: Lucas Revano major dec. Nick Widmann, 12-0 - Penn 8, Drexel 0
157: No. 33 Parker Kropman fall Jon Errico, 2:57 - Penn 8, Drexel 6
165: No. 18 Ebed Jarrell fall Jake Lizak, 2:02 - Drexel 12, Penn 8
174: No. 27 Michael O'Malley dec. Neil Antrassian, 4-0 - Drexel 15, Penn 8
184: John Stout dec. Owen Brooks, 6-5 - Drexel 15, Penn 11
197: No. 28 Bryan McLaughlin dec. No. 29 Cole Urbas, 7-5 - Drexel 18, Penn 11
285: Sean O'Malley dec. Nate Hoaglund, 4-1 - Drexel 21, Penn 11
125: No. 6 Michael Colaiocco major dec. Antonio Mininno, 19-7 - Drexel 21, Penn 15
133: Chase Shields wins by forfeit - Drexel 27, Penn 15