Wrestling Qualifies Three for NCAA Tournament, Places Six on the Podium at 2014 EIWA Championships
INTERVIEWS: Fronhofer & Scheidel
PHILADELPHIA – First-year Markus Scheidel reached the finals in his first EIWA Championships, finishing as the runner-up at 157 pounds. He is one of three Columbia wrestlers to punch bids to the NCAA Championships in Oklahoma City, Okla. in two weeks. He will be joined by senior Josh Houldsworth (165), who is making his second straight appearance, and sophomore Zack Hernandez (184).
“I’m really pleased with the performance today,” said Andrew F. Barth Head Coach of Wrestling Carl Fronhofer. “Top to bottom, all of the guys competed. Each one brought a lot of excitement, passion and competitiveness to every bout so I’m really pleased with that.”
As a team, Columbia finished fifth with 69 points out of 18 squads.
Scheidel, the seventh seed, knocked off third-seeded Joey Napoli from Lehigh in the semifinals with a 3-1 decision to reach the finals. Scheidel and Napoli were tied at 1-1 heading into the final 30 seconds of the bout when Scheidel wrapped up Napoli and took him down for the winning points, clinching his spot on the national stage.
In the finals, Scheidel faced the top-seeded Nestor Taffur from Boston University. Taffur would come away with the 8-2 decision, giving Scheidel runner-up honors as a first-year.
“I knew coming into the postseason that it wasn’t really about rankings, but how hard you could wrestle during the match. So every match I just went out there and wrestled as hard as I could,” said Scheidel after the finals.
Josh Houldsworth is headed to his second straight NCAA Championships after coming away with a third-place finish. The senior co-captain started the day with a tough loss in the championship semifinals to the top-seeded Dylan Palacio from Cornell, 5-3. Houldsworth came back strong on the consolation semifinals with an exceptional 13-5 major decision over Harvard’s Devon Gobbo. Carrying a 6-2 lead into the final period, Houldsworth racked up three takedowns and added the riding time point for the major decision.
It was an all-Ivy League consolation finals with Houldsworth taking on Penn’s Casey Kent. Avenging a 4-2 loss in the regular season, Houldsworth rallied from a 1-0 deficit with three points in the final period to claim third place.
“After I lost my semifinals match, I really had nothing to lose,” said Houldsworth. “My goal is to get on the podium, so I am going to wrestle my hardest each match."
"I’m going to wrestle as if each match is my last because it could be,” commented Houldsworth when asked what his goals at the NCAA Championship would be.
Hernandez, like Scheidel, will be making his first appearance in the NCAA Championships after claiming fourth place at 184 pounds. Army’s Ryan Tompkins was first up for Hernandez in the consolation quarterfinals. The Lions’ sophomore scored a first period takedown and two escapes in the second to hold a 4-2 lead after five minutes. The only scoring in the final period came with Hernandez adding the riding time point to capture the 5-2 decision.
A rematch against Harvard’s Cameron Croy was up next, with Hernandez again picking up the win over the Crimson grappler. Hernandez held a narrow 3-2 edge heading into the third period, but he took control of the bout with four points on an escape, takedown and the riding time point to secure the 7-2 decision. Brown’s Ophir Bernstein topped Hernandez in the consolation finals, 6-0, but both grapplers are headed to Oklahoma City.
“I just took it one match at a time," said Hernandez about his performance at the EIWA Championships. "I wrestled my hardest and now I’m headed to NCAA’s so I’m pretty happy about that."
Sophomore Angelo Amenta earned a spot on the EIWA podium with a fifth-place showing at 133 pounds. Amenta dominated his consolation quarterfinals match, notching a 6-0 shutout of Navy’s Colton Rasche. An escape, takedown and two-point nearfall comprised a strong second period in the bout, before adding the riding time point.
Cornell’s Mark Grey won the consolation semifinals bout, sending Amenta to the fifth-place bout where he took on Harvard’s Jeffrey Ott. The second period once again proved pivotal for Amenta, scoring a two-point nearfall in between two reversals. Amenta added another two-point nearfall and the riding time point in the third to pick up the 9-4 decision.
Senior Matt Bystol reached the seventh-place bout Sunday where he avenged his first round loss to Army’s Tyler Rauenzahn with a 1-0 victory on a single escape in the second period.
Junior Shane Hughes claimed sixth place at 174 pounds. Hughes reached the semifinals on day one of the tournament, but dropped his first two bouts of the day and was unable to participate in the fifth-place bout due to injury.
Scheidel, Houldsworth and Hernandez will head to Oklahoma City, Okla. for the 2014 NCAA Championships to be held at the Chesapeake Energy Arena from March 20-22. Wildcard bids for the NCAA Championships will be announced on March 12, rounding out the field of 333 wrestlers.
R16: David Terao (Amer) won by decision over Penn Gottfried (Col), 9-2
CON: Penn Gottfried (Col) won by decision over Caleb Richardson (Penn), 4-0
CON: Darien Cruz (Lehigh) won by decision over Penn Gottfried (Col), 2-1
R16: Angelo Amenta (Col) won by maj. dec. over Robert Ruiz (F&M), 8-0
QF: Vincent Dellefave (Rutgers) won in tie breaker over Angelo Amenta (Col), TB-1 4-3
CON: Angelo Amenta (Col) won by tech fall over McKendry Bade (Penn), 15-0, 7:00
CON-QF: Angelo Amenta (Col) won by decision over Colton Rasche (Navy), 6-0
CON-SF: Mark Grey (Corn) won by fall over Angelo Amenta (Col), 2:14
5th: Angelo Amenta (Col) won by decision over Jeffrey Ott (Harv), 9-4
R16: Tyler Rauenzahn (Army) won by decision over Matt Bystol (Col), 7-3
CON: Matt Bystol (Col) won by decision over Tom Page (Amer), 5-3
CON: Matt Bystol (Col) won by decision over Laike Gardner (Lehigh), 3-1
CON-QF: Richard Durso (F&M) won by decision over Matt Bystol (Col), 6-4
7th: Matt Bystol (Col) won by decision over Tyler Rauenzahn (Army), 1-0
Pigtail: Ryan Ponte (Col) wins by decision over Mark Marchetti (Army), 2-0
R16: Mitch Minotti (Lehigh) won by decision over Ryan Ponte (Col), 4-0
CON: Ryan Ponte (Col) won by decision over Nick Stager (Harv), 2-0
CON: Richard Krop (Prince) won by maj. dec. over Ryan Ponte (Col), 14-1
R16: Markus Scheidel (Col) won by decision over Zach Johnson (Navy), 11-6
QF: Markus Scheidel (Col) won by decision over Richard McDonald (Brown), 4-2
SF: Markus Scheidel (Col) won by decision over Joey Napoli (Lehigh), 3-1
FINALS: Nestor Taffor (BU) won by decision over Markus Scheidel (Col)
R16: Josh Houldsworth (Col) won by decision over Judson Ziegler (Prince), 8-1
QF: Josh Houldsworth (Col) won by maj. dec. over Vincent Grella (Bing), 13-1
SF: Dylan Palacio (Corn) won by decision over Josh Houldsworth (Col), 5-3
CON-SF: Josh Houldsworth (Col) won by maj. dec. over Devon Gobbo (Harv), 13-5
CON-FINAL: Josh Houldsworth (Col) won by decision over Casey Kent (Penn), 3-2
R16: Shane Hughes (Col) won by decision over Rob Schlitt (Buck), 6-4
QF: Shane Hughes (Col) won by decision over Richard McDonald (Brown), 4-2
SF: Mathew Miller (Navy) won by fall over Shane Hughes (Col), 3:12
CON-SF: Frank Affronti (Hof) won by maj. dec. over Shane Hughes (Col), 10-0
5th: Brian Harvey won by medical forfiet
R16: Zack Hernandez (Col) won by maj. dec. over Paul Alessandrini (F&M), 9-0
QF: Ophir Bernstein (Brown) won by decision over Zack Hernandez (Col), 6-0
CON: Zack Hernandez (Col) won by decision over Dan Seidenberg (Rutgers), 3-0
CON-QF: Zack Hernandez (Col) won by decision over Ryan Tompkins (Army), 5-2
CON-SF: Zack Hernandez (Col) won by decision over Cameron Croy (Harv), 7-2
CON-FINAL: Ophir Bernstein (Brown) won by decision over Zack Hernandez (Col), 6-0
R16: Abram Ayala (Prince) won by decision over Matt Idelson (Col), 8-3
CON: Matt Idelson (Col) won by decision over Alex Najjar (BU), 5-4
CON: Brandon Palik (Drexel) won by decision over Matt Idelson (Col), 5-0