LANCASTER, Pa. – The brutal portion of Franklin & Marshall's late-season schedule continues on Friday, when the Diplomats travel to Bucknell to take on the No. 22 Bisons at 7:00 p.m. The Diplomats enter competition with a 2-7 mark on the year, while Bucknell has won eight straight and stands at 13-3, including a perfect 6-0 EIWA mark.
To watch this week's interview with head coach Mike Rogers, click here.
Friday, Feb. 13 – F&M at Bucknell – 7:00 PM
A Look at Bucknell
F&M leads the all-time series against Bucknell at 21-12-1, dating back to the 1947 season. These squads faced off last Feb. 14, with the Diplomats coming away with a thrilling 23-21 victory at the Mayser Center. Robert Ruiz, Richard Durso, Andrew Murano, Colin Gironda and Charles Kerkesner all delivered wins in the dual.
Bucknell ranks third in the EIWA and has multiple wrestlers that place in the conference's top-six. Paul Petrov is third at 125 and 19th in the nation, while Victor Lopez is sixth in the conference at 149. Joe Stolfi (285) is the EIWA's top grappler and places 11th in the country.
The Bisons have a number of impressive wins on the season, including a 20-16 win over No. 10 Virginia on Dec. 20 and a 25-12 victory against No. 17 Rider on Jan. 10.
Last Time Out
F&M battled early, but was ultimately overmatched by Drexel in a 30-6 defeat on Saturday evening at the Mayser Center. Before the match, the Diplomats honored their four-member senior class of Isaiah Cromwell, Alex Henry, Robert Ruiz and Adam Schroeder.
Saturday's contest began at 165, with Drexel rattling off a pair of decisions, followed by a major decision at 184 to take the early 10-0 lead. Charles Kerkesner put a brief halt to the Dragon's momentum at 197, securing a thrilling 6-5 overtime victory.
The Diplomats' junior grappler took the lead with an escape in the final period and avoided a takedown in the final 13 seconds to secure the win.
Drexel rolled from that point, earning five consecutive wins for the decisive 27-point advantage heading into the final bout. Rob King ended the final home match of the season on a positive note at 157, outscoring his opponent by a 5-1 score in the second period to hang on for the 6-1 decision.
Moving Up the Charts
Robert Ruiz continues his ascent up the program's career wins leaders. The senior grappler has 68 wins entering Friday's contest, a mark that places him tied for 13th all-time. He needs seven more victories on the season to move into the top 10. The all-time record belongs to Craig Blackman '81 with 117.
Freshman Patrick Quinlan leads the Diplomats with a 19-9 mark at 133, followed by Robert Ruiz and Rob King with 15 victories on the season. Jason Bing and Alex Henry have 14 victories a piece, while Charles Kerkesner (13), Colin Gironda (12), Scott Stevens (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.