TROY, N.Y. – The Columbia wrestling team opened the dual season Saturday with a thrilling 16-15 defeat of the Michigan State Spartans at the Journeyman/Asics Northeast Duals at the Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, N.Y. The Lions also took on Clarion and Lehigh, falling to the Golden Eagles in a close match, 20-16, while the Mountain Hawks came away with a 25-9 victory.

Michigan State Recap
Columbia raced out to a 13-0 advantage through the first four bouts against Michigan State and held on for the 16-15 victory. Penn Gottfried got the Lions off to a good start with a major decision over Brennan Lyon, 11-2. Angelo Amenta followed with his fifth victory of the year with a shutout of Garth Yenter, 4-0, to put the Lions out front 7-0.

The winning continued at 141 pounds with No. 18 Matt Bystol taking the riding time point to slip past Brian Gibbs, 2-1. Connor Sutton pushed the Columbia lead up to 13-0, defeating Matt Pasqualini at 149 pounds with a sudden victory in the second overtime, 5-3.

The Spartans looked to close the gap with two victories via decision at 157 and 165, but Eric Fajardo got Columbia back in the win column at 174 pounds with a 9-7 decision against Kevin Nash. Fajardo’s victory gave the Lions a 16-6, a lead they would not relinquish.

MSU would capture decisions in the final three bouts, but the nine points would leave them one short of a tie, as the Lions secured the 16-15 win in their first dual of the season.

Columbia 16, MSU 15
125: Penn Gottfried (COL) maj. dec. Brennan Lyon (MSU) –11-2, COL: 4-0
133: Angelo Amenta (COL) dec. Garth Yenter (MSU) – 4-0, COL: 7-0
141: No. 18 Matt Bystol (COL) dec. Brian Gibbs (MSU) – 2-1, COL: 10-0
149: Connor Sutton (COL) dec. Matt Pasqualini (MSU) – SV-2, 5-3, COL: 13-0
157: No. 18/19 Ryan Watts (MSU) dec. Markus Scheidel (COL) – 7-4, COL: 13-3
165: Brian Nash (MSU) dec. Josh Houldsworth (COL) – 2-0, COL: 13-6
174: Eric Fajardo (COL) dec Kevin Nash (MSU) – 9-7, COL: 16-6
184: John Rizqallah (MSU) dec. Zack Hernandez (COL) – 3-0, COL: 16-9
197: No. 20 Nick Diarmid (MSU) dec. Matt Idelson (COL) – SV-1, 9-5, COL: 16-12
285: Mike McClure (MSU) dec. Wyatt Baker (COL) – 7-2, COL: 16-15

Clarion Recap
Gottfried, Amenta and Bystol once again gave the Lions an early lead, but the Golden Eagles were able to rally to knock off Columbia, 20-16, in the second session of the day. Gottfried earned his second win of the day against Clarion’s Jonathan Mele in an 8-4 decision to begin the match.

Amenta notched his second major decision of the year at 133 pounds, shutting out Sam Sherlock, 11-0, to put the Lions ahead, 7-0. At 141, Matt Bystol extended the lead to 10-0 for Columbia in a high-scoring decision over Tyler Bedelyon, 12-10. No. 18 Justin Arthur got Clarion on the board with a technical fall at 149 pounds, and Austin Matthews took the 157-pound bout, 9-2, to get the Golden Eagles with two.

Houldsworth pushed the lead back to five in favor of the Lions, defeating Michael Pavasko, 5-1. Ryan Darch was able to swing the score in favor of the Golden Eagles in the 174-pound bout, earning a fall to put Clarion ahead, 14-13.

After Dustin Conti put Clarion ahead by four, 17-13, with a win at 184, Mike Fetchet responded at 197 for Columbia with his fifth victory of the year, beating Daniel Sutherland, 6-2. With only one point separating Columbia and Clarion, the heavyweight matchup turned into the deciding bout, with Evan Daley posting a 9-4 decision to clinch the match for the Golden Eagles, 20-16.

Clarion 20, Columbia 16
125: Penn Gottfried (COL) dec. Jonathan Mele (CLAR) – 8-4, COL: 3-0
133: Angelo Amenta (COL) maj. dec. Sam Sherlock (CLAR) – 11-0, COL: 7-0
141: Matt Bystol (COL) dec. Tyler Bedelyon (CLAR) – 12-10, COL: 10-0
149: No. 18 Justin Arthur (CLAR) tech. fall Connor Sutton (COL) – COL: 10-5
157: Austin Matthews (CLAR) dec. Markus Scheidel (COL) – 9-2, COL: 10-8
165: Josh Houldsworth (COL) dec. Michael Pavasko (CLAR) – 5-1, COL: 13-8
174: Ryan Darch (CLAR) fall. Eric Fajardo (COL) – CLAR: 14-13
184: Dustin Conti (CLAR) dec. Zack Hernandez (COL) – 8-3, CLAR: 17-13
197: Mike Fetchet (COL) dec. Daniel Sutherland (CLAR) – 6-2, CLAR: 17-16
285: Evan Daley (CLAR) dec. Wyatt Baker (COL) – 9-4, CLAR: 20-16

Lehigh Recap
Bystol scored his third win of the day and Houldworth registered his second fall of the year, but Lehigh was victorious in the other eight bouts to down Columbia, 25-9, in the final session Saturday.

Trailing 6-0, Bystol edged by No. 20 Laike Garnder, 3-2, for his 10th win of 2013. Houldsworth was also able to get Columbia within three points of the Mountain Hawks, pinning Billy Ramsey in 2:24 to make it a 12-9 match, but Lehigh would win the final four bouts for the 25-9 victory.

The Lions will take almost a full month off from competition before heading to Evanston, Ill. to compete in the 51st Midlands Championships at Northwestern on Dec. 29-30.

Lehigh 25, Columbia 9
125 – Darian Cruz (LH) dec. Penn Gottfried (COL) - 3-1, LH: 3-0
133 – No. 6 Mason Beckman (LH) dec. Angelo Amenta (COL) - 4-2, LH: 6-0
141 – No. 18 Matt Bystol (COL) dec. No. 20 Laike Gardner (LH) - 3-2, LH: 6-3
149 – Mitch Minotti (LH) dec. Connor Sutton (COL) - 9-4, LH: 9-3
157 – No. 8/11 Joey Napoli (LH) dec. Markus Scheidel (COL) - 3-2, LH: 12-3
165 – Josh Houldsworth (COL) fall Billy Ramsey (LH)  - 2:24, LH: 12-9
174 – Elliot Riddick (LH) dec. Shane Hughes (COL) - 8-4, LH: 15-9
184 – Zach Diekel (LH) maj. dec. Troy Hembury (COL) - 13-5, LH: 19-9
197 – John Bolich (LH) dec. Mike Fetchet (COL) - 6-2, SV-2 LH: 22-9
285 – Doug Vollaro (LH) dec. Wyatt Baker (COL) - 2-0 LH: 25-9