Nov. 6, 2009
FAIRFIELD, CT - The Sacred Heart University wrestling team embarks on a new season as they face Rutgers University at the William H. Pitt Center Sunday at 1:00 pm. Pioneer head coach Casey Brewster, entering his third season at the helm of the program, has named Cory Dunn, Michael Hartman, Brandon Lapp, and Anthony Priore the captains for the 2009-'10 season.
Dunn, a red-shirt senior from Rutherford, NJ, represents a potential national qualifier for SHU wrestling in the 141 lb. weight class. A junior out of Garwood, NJ, Priore was seeded third in the Colonial Athletic Association Championship a year ago and will once again compete at 149. Dunn is ranked third in the CAA pre-season polls in his weight class, while Priore is fifth and red-shirt sophomore Justin Belanger (West Greenwich, RI) is ranked third at 133.
Hartman, a red-shirt senior out of Cranston, RI, will wrestle at 174, while fellow captain and red-shirt junior Lapp, out of Castelton, NY, will compete at 197. Promising newcomers to the program include Belanger, a transfer from conference foe Old Dominion, and red-shirt junior Pat Feely (Johnston, RI) who will compete at 125. Freshman T.J. Neidhart, a 165 pounder from Wading River, NY, will red-shirt this season for the Pioneers.
Sacred Heart faces a tough schedule including powerhouse programs such as Rutgers, Hofstra, and Army. The Pioneers face Drexel and Pittsburgh on their first road meet of the season on November 14. On November 22, the team will partake in the Sprawl Brawl in Binghamton, NY where they will face Rutgers for a second time along with Harvard and Edinboro.
Though the schedule is tough coach Brewster says, "We must seek the best competition in order to get better as a team."
Earlier this week the CAA announced its 25th Anniversary Team. Former Pioneer wrestler, Payam Zarrinpour (SHU ’07), represented the Red & White on the Silver Anniversary Team. Zarrinpour, a native of Shiraz, Iran, was a four-time NCAA qualifier who received All-America honors in as a senior as a heavyweight wrestler. He was a three-time CAA heavyweight champion and earned Rookie of the Year honors in 2004. Throughout his career Zarrinpour compiled a 127-32 record.
The CAA Championships will take place at Rider University March 5-6.