WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Five Sacred Heart wrestlers placed Sunday at the Wilkes Open, held at the Marts Center on the campus of Wilkes University.
In his debut as a Pioneer, Patrick Skinner placed third in the 125-pound weight class. He opened the day with a 5-1 victory over Josh Patrick of Rutgers and a 20-1 technical fall of Wilkes' Dustin Zuzulock. After a loss to North Carolina's Tyrone Klump, Skinner reached the third place match which he won 6-5 over Zack Valcarce of Rider. In all, Skinner was 6-1 on the day with a technical fall, a pin, and a major decision.
Casey Mitchell continued his strong sophomore season with a third place finish at 157. Mitchell pinned his first two opponents Sunday before losing to Bloomsburg's Josh Ortman in the quarterfinals. He responded to the loss with a pin and two more wins to take third with a 2-0 win against NYU's Raymond Jazzikoff, capping off a 5-1 day. At 174 pounds, Conan Schuster battled through the wrestlebacks to take third place. After winning his opening match 12-0, Schuster lost to Mike Fagg-Daves of Rider 10-4. In the wrestlebacks, Schuster pinned his next two opponents before avenging his loss to Fagg-Daves with a 6-4 win to advance to the third place match. Schuster then pinned Buffalo's Jake Weber less than a minute into the match to take third.
Both Johnny Vrasidas at 165 and Elliott Antler at 184 were 3-2 on the day. Antler had a technical fall on Sunday as both he and Vrasidas reached the fifth-place matches in their respective weight classes. Also, John Hartnett and Thomas Grosso earned their first collegiate victories.
"Our guys fought so hard in the wrestlebacks, which speaks volumes to their character and pride," said head coach Andy Lausier following Sunday's action. "Some competitive breakthroughs took place today and we'll look to capitalize on these moments and make progress each week".
The Pioneers will grapple at VMI on Wednesday, Jan. 7 at 7:30 p.m.