Diplomats Upend VMI in Home Opener

Diplomats Upend VMI in Home Opener

LANCASTER, Pa. – Anthony Mancini's second-period pin at 184 put the finishing touches on an impressive 30-19 win for the Franklin & Marshall wrestling team over VMI on Friday evening at the Mayser Center. 

The victory in the Diplomats' home opener improved F&M to 1-0 on the year while the Keydets fell to 0-3. 

Holding on to a 21-13 team lead heading into the 184-pound matchup, Mancini delivered a clutch fall at 3:59 to give six points to the Diplomats and officially clinch the victory. 

VMI had the upper-hand after the opening bout of the night at 125 with Dalton Henderson putting the Keydets out in front at 5-0 after an 18-0 major decision. However, back-to-back pins by Dan Martoccio at 133 (0:42) and Paddy Quinlan at 141 (3:35) swung the momentum back in F&M's favor with a seven-point advantage at 12-5. 

Jason Bing (149 pounds) followed with a 12-2 major that included a pair of takedowns, a reversal and four near fall points to pad the Diplomats' lead at 16-5. A 27-12 tech. fall by the Keydets at 157 brought VMI to within six at 16-10, but a dominant 18-3 tech. fall by Robbie King (165 pounds), which featured eight first-period back points, once again pushed F&M ahead by 11 points. 

The Keydets continued to fight, cutting into the deficit by three points with a 7-2 Shabaka Johns decision at 174 before Mancini's pin put an end to VMI's chances. Corey Kerkesner also had a memorable night for the Diplomats registering his first-career dual meet victory at 285 with a third-period reversal that gave the sophomore a thrilling 4-3 win to close out the match. 

F&M has a four-week break in action and will return to the mat on December 29th when the Diplomats send wrestlers to compete at both the Midlands and the Lock Haven Classic.

F&M 30, VMI 19

125: Dalton Henderson (VMI) over Edgar Garcia (F&M) (TF 18-0 5:32)

133: Dan Martoccio (F&M) over Kevin Keaveney (VMI) (Fall 0:42)

141: Patrick Quinlan (F&M) over Darren Ostrander (VMI) (Fall 3:35)

149: Jason Bing (F&M) over Stevan Smith (VMI) (MD 12-2)

157: Neal Richards (VMI) over Emmett LiCastri (F&M) (TF 27-12 6:22)

165: Rob King (F&M) over Blake Hohman (VMI) (TF 18-3 4:40)

174: Shabaka Johns (VMI) over Joshua Young (F&M) (Dec 7-2)

184: Anthony Mancini (F&M) over Christopher Beck (VMI) (Fall 3:59)

197: Taylor Thomas (VMI) over Jack Argast (F&M) (Fall 2:52)

285: Corey Kerkesner (F&M) over Sam Bouis (VMI) (Dec 4-3)