Raiders pick up three wins in KU Duals
Following its impressive outing against Elizabethtown College, the Shippensburg University wrestling team travelled to Kutztown University for the Kutztown Duals last weekend.
The team went 3–1 over the weekend, with convincing wins over Belmont Abbey College, 25–19, American International College, 39–9, and Minot State University, 36–6 before falling to No. 23 Tiffin University, 12–30.
SU faced Belmont Abbey in its only match on Friday. The Raiders jumped out to an 18–0 lead through the first four bouts of the match, which included a pin by junior Mike Springer. Springer leads the team with seven victories by pinfall.
After dropping two decisions and then forfeiting a match, SU was ahead by a narrow margin, 18–16, heading into the final three bouts. Junior Hunter Fenk got the Raiders back on track, winning his match by decision. Then, Junior Evan Ramos — who is No. 6 in Division II at the 197-pound weight class — put the match out of reach with a major decision in his bout.
The Raiders returned to action on Saturday and continued their momentum from the previous day with an opening win over American International.
SU won four bouts by forfeit and also picked up two forfeits versus American International. Sophomore Dustin Steffenino registered a technical fall to give SU the lead after the first bout. Steffenino won all four of his matches on the weekend.
American International only had two wins throughout the match. Minot State did not fare much better, only registering one win, which was a forfeit.
SU won all three of its matches coming into its contest against No. 23 Tiffin, but the team knew it would be a hard battle to get the victory. Tiffin came in with three wrestlers who were nationally ranked, and three others who were regionally ranked. SU opened the match with two victories, but Tiffin won the last eight matches, including one forfeit and one pinfall. Ramos lost his second match of the season against another nationally ranked opponent, Kevin Christman.
Overall, the Raiders improved their season record to 9–10. SU only has seven more matches in its regular season before the Super Region I Championships in late February. The team must win a majority of their remaining matches if it hopes to make it to the tournament.