LANCASTER, Pa. – Franklin & Marshall's wrestling team continues to traverse the difficult portion of its schedule on Saturday, welcoming Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association (EIWA) foe Princeton to the Mayser Center of Saturday for a 6:30 p.m. contest.
To watch this week's interview with head coach Mike Rogers, click here.
Saturday, Jan. 31 – F&M vs. Princeton – 6:30 PM
A Look at Princeton
F&M comes into this weekend's matchup with a 2-5 dual meet record on the season, while the Tigers sit at 5-4, not including their matchup with Cornell on Friday night. Princeton fell its last time out, dropping a narrow 22-20 match against Hofstra on Jan. 9.
The majority of Princeton's lineup is ranked in the top six of the EIWA. Jordan Laster (141) is fifth, Adam Krop (149) is second, Jonathan Schleifer (165) is fourth, Judd Ziegler (174) is sixth, Brett Harner (184) is fifth and Abe Ayala (197) is the conference's top-ranked wrestler. Ayala is also nationally ranked at No. 10.
F&M is 19-31-1 all-time against Princeton, dating back to the 1926 season. The Diplomats last win in he series came on Feb. 2, 2008 with a 40-9 victory. However the Tigers have won the last six meetings, including a 34-10 defeat on Feb. 1 of last season.
Last Time Out
Franklin & Marshall's wrestling team showed some fight when it battled one of the nation's top teams last Saturday afternoon, but No. 11 Lehigh (10-3) proved to be too much for the Diplomats to handle in a 40-6 defeat in front of 1,300 fans at Grace Hall in Bethlehem.
The conference's No. 4 wrestler at 125 gave Lehigh an early 5-0 lead with the help of seven takedowns in a 20-4 opening bout technical fall. In an early 9-0 hole following a major decision at 133, Robert Ruiz faced off against Lehigh's Dean Somers and managed to secure a cradle near the end of the first period to deliver six key points to the Diplomats.
Trailing by just three points heading into 149, F&M suffered a major decision at 149, a pin at 157 and another major at 165 as the Mountain Hawks went ahead comfortably at 23-6. After Lehigh's second pin of the contest at 174 and the its second technical fall at 184, Charles Kerkesner fought hard for the Diplomats at 197, but came up just short in a 6-5 loss.
Kerkesner registered a pair of opening-period takedowns to exit the first stanza with a 4-4 tie. Trailing by just one point in the third, Kerkesner earned an escape to tie up the bout, however riding time belonged to Lehigh at the end of nine minutes.
Freshman Patrick Quinlan leads the Diplomats with a 19-8 mark at 133. Robert Ruiz with 15 victories on the season. Jason Bing and Alex Henry have 14 victories a piece, while Rob King (13), Charles Kerkesner (11) and Andrew Francos (10) round out the list of Diplomats with double-figure win totals. To view the complete 2014-15 records for F&M's wrestlers, click here.
Saturday's match also marks Alumni Night for the program, which is meant for former wrestlers and current supporters of F&M wrestling to reconnect. A meet and greet in the Hall of Fame Room of Mayser will be held an hour before the start of the Princeton match, as well as a more formal social following the bout. That event takes place at the Brickyard Restaurant on North Prince Street and will start at approximately 8:00-8:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend for light refreshments.
Taffur Competing at Dave Schultz
F&M assistant wrestling coach Nestor Taffur is competing at the Dave Schultz Memorial International Tournament at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. today in the 74 kilo wt class (163 lbs). Nestor's first round match will be against Tyler Caldwell (4x All American/2x finalist -Sunkist Kids). To view live go to flowrestling.com and to follow results go to trackwrestling.com.
The event is one of the top intetnational tournaments held in the United States and features a strong field of national champions, All-Americans and world and Olympic medalists.