Wrestling wins season opener

Nothing gives a team more confidence than opening a new season with a victory. The wrestling squad for Shippensburg University picked up some momentum after taking down Waynesburg University by a score of 31-10 on Wednesday.

The Raiders picked up seven wins in the match, including three pinfalls. Cole Rush started the scoring for SU with a pinfall victory at 133 pounds. It took Rush just over 80 seconds to get the win. 

Dante Steffenino followed Rush with a major decision to give the Raiders a 10-4 advantage going into the fourth matchup of the day. It was Steffenino’s first match since February of 2016. He came close to a pinfall early in the match and then had a near fall, giving him the major decision.

Sean Donohue continued the run for the Raiders, picking up their third straight win, and Donohue got his first collegiate win by decision. The win put SU up 13-4.

Mike Springer followed Donohue and earned a pinfall victory in the 157-pound class. Springer’s 2016 season ended early when he was injured at the regional championships. He scored the pin only 60 seconds into the match, the 21st pin of his career. Springer has won eight-straight matches dating back to last season.

Chris Miller gave the Raiders their fifth-straight win on the day, getting the win by decision at 165 pounds. It was Miller’s first match in three years and first ever at 165 pounds. Ryan Narber picked up another pinfall victory for SU at 174 pounds for the team’s sixth-straight win.

After dropping a match at 184 pounds, the Raiders got back on track when Evan Ramos stepped onto the mat. Ramos returns for his final season as a Raider and kicked it off with a win against Ken Burrs, the reigning Presidents Athletic Conference (PAC) champion at 197 pounds.

It was a back-and-forth affair between the two champions, and they traded takedowns early in the match before Ramos was able to execute one final takedown to reclaim the lead and earn the decision. The Raiders held a 31-7 advantage heading into the final bout of the day. 

The team was unable to get the win in overtime in the heavyweight bout, but the day still went in favor of the Raiders as they start out with a perfect record going into next Wednesday when the team travels to Elizabethtown College. The meet will begin at 5 p.m. as the Raiders will look to improve on their strong start to the season.

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