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College Preview: D1 Schools

By NYWN Staff, 10/28/19, 11:45AM EDT

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*The following previews, schedules and lineups are subject to change*

Cornell Big Red Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Dom Lajoie Sophomore
133 Charles Tucker Senior 1-2 @ NCAAs
141 Noah Baughman Senior
149 Hunter Richards Junior
157 Fredy Stroker Senior
165 Andrew Berreyesa Sophomore 8th @ EIWAs
174 Brandon Womack Senior 2-2 @ NCAA's
184 Ben Darmstadt Sophomore Injury/6th @ NCAAs in 2018
197 Jon Loew/Jon Fagen Freshman/Freshman
285 Brendan Furman Sophomore

Cornell starts out their season with North Carolina St coming to Ithaca. Two nationally ranked programs going head to head to begin the season is great for the sport. What better way to follow that dual meet than with another nationally ranked team on the schedule in Ohio St out of the B1G. Sandwiched between is the Cornell Open. The Cornell Open is an optimal opportunity to get early jump on the competition.

The Big Red will once again compete at the CKLV Invitational and the South Beach Duals in December before they gear up for another EIWA regular season championship. Cornell is known for wrestling extremely tough competition prior to the post season. This season is to be no different as they travel to Piscataway, NJ to take on Rutgers and then two days later return home against Virginia Tech out of the ACC. The extreme concentration to be on top of your game throughout the entire season is what propels Cornell into the postseason. The individual results speak for themselves each and every year.

Click here for Cornell’s full schedule.

The Big Red may look a tad different this season due to Olympic redshirts. Returning though are quality wrestlers that will be expected to lead Cornell in 2019-20. Ben Darmstadt (Elyria, OH) is coming off an injury last season. He is expected to return to his 2018 form which ended with a 6th place showing at the NCAA tournament. Teammate Brandon Womack (Scottsboro, AL) enters his final season for the Big Red and what a career he has had thus far. Womack is a 3x NCAA Qualifier, placing once as a freshman at 165lbs (8th). Brandon also won his only EIWA championship that year as well. Lightweight Charles Tucker (Worcester, MA) is the third member of this trio. Chas is a 2x NCAA qualifier and he was seeded 9th in last year’s tournament. All three are expected to contend for EIWA titles this season and a return trip back to Nationals this March.

With Max Dean out for an Olympic Redshirt and Darmstadt dropping to 184lbs, the 197lb class seems to be wide open now. It seems as if freshman Jon Loew (Wantagh-8) and Jonathon Fagen (Fruitland, ID) will contend for the starting spot. Loew wrapped up an impressive career for Long Island powerhouse Wantagh where he started every season since he was in 7th grade. As a senior, Loew would win the 195lbs NYS D1 championship with ease as well as winning the NHSCA Senior national title. Fagen is no slouch himself wrapping up four state championships in Idaho. He was also a Cadet Greco Roman National Champion, Cadet Freestyle All-American, World Team Member and a 2x NHSCA All-American.

Columbia Lions Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Joe Manchio/Angelo Rini Sophomore/Freshman 5th @ EIWAs
133 Trent Svingala Freshman
141 Matt Kazimir Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWAs
149 Cole Corrigan Sophomore 0-2 @ EIWAs
157 Riley Jacops Junior
165 Kyle Mosher Freshman
174 Lennox Wolak Freshman
184 Joe Franzese Sophomore
197 Sam Wustefeld Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWAs
285 Daniel Herman Junior 8th @ EIWAs

The Columbia Lions head into the 2019-20 season under 4th year Head Coach Zach Tanelli. Tanelli plans to build of last season’s 10-5 mark, which consisted of two separate three match win streaks. Columbia opens the season with four straight tournaments with Stanford out of the Pac-12 sandwiched in between. The Midlands Championships take place at the end of December on the campus of Northwestern University. The Midlands is a true test for all competitors and is a great opportunity to separate one’s self from the pack.

Dual meet season begins with a bang. Binghamton and Cornell on back to back nights up in Section 4 territory. The Bearcats and Big Red are heavy favorites but a solid showing by the Lions may open some eyes for everyone else in the EIWA.

As the season progresses many wrestlers and the team overall tend to find their stride and momentum. Columbia was a beneficiary of that last season as they finished 11th overall at the conference tournament. Another year of experience and a solid core of freshman can easily uplift the Lions into a top 10 finish overall this season.

Click here for the Lions full schedule.

Three New York State grapplers are set to break the Columbia lineup in 2019-20. Sophomore Joe Franzese returns at 184lbs hoping to improve on his 8-8 campaign last season. The 2x NYS place finisher from John Glenn is the clear front runner at 184. The Lions hit the jackpot with the additions of NYS Champions Trent Svingala (Maple Hill-2) and Kyle Mosher (Southside-8). Both wrestlers dominate the NY scene throughout their high school careers. Trent was a 2x NYS champion and 4x place finisher while Mosher was a 1x NYS Champion and 5x place finisher. Trent and Kyle are projected to break the lineup at 133lbs and 165lbs respectively.

Coach Tanelli has quite the dilemma at 125lbs. Returner Joe Manchio had a solid  freshman season going 20-15 and finishing 5th place at the EIWA conference tournament. One would expect Manchio to be the front runner at 125lbs. However, in comes Angelo Rini (St. Edward, OH). Rini is bringing a resume with him that most wrestlers could only dream of. On top of being a 3x Ohio state place finisher and a PowerAde Champion, winning the 2019 Junior National Freestyle Title in Fargo, ND at 126lbs may be his greatest accolade. It is safe to say that Angelo Rini is ready to contend immediately.

On the top end of the Lions lineup we have Sam Wustefeld (Scotch Plains, NJ) and Daniel Herman (Bethesda, MD). With his freshman season behind him, Sam looks to improve on his 12-18 record in 2019-20. Wustefeld did garnish a 9-1 win at the EIWA tournament over 2018 D2 NYS Champion Connor Fredericks. Herman went on to finish 8th at the conference tournament including an impressive 3-2 win over #5 seed Niko Camacho of American. Solid season by both wrestlers will definitely help the Lions win some dual meets this season.

Binghamton Bearcats Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Audey Ashkar RS-Junior 7th @ EIWAs
133 Zach Trampe RS-Sophomore 1-2 @ NCAAs
141 Anthony Sparacio Senior 0-2 @ NCAAs
149 Michael Zarif/Matt Swanson Sophomore/RS-Sophomore No Postseason/0-2 @ EIWAs
157 Chris Barker Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWAs
165 Aidan Monteverdi RS-Sophomore
174 Alex Melikian/Jacob Nolan RS-Junior/Freshman
184 Lou DePrez RS-Sophomore 3-2 @ NCAAs
197 Nunzio Crowley/Sam DePrez RS-Junior/Freshman
285 Joe Doyle RS-Sophomore

Binghamton is quietly on the rise. The Bearcats finished 10-3 overall last season with an 8-2 dual meet record in the EIWA, losing to powerhouse Cornell and Army. This season should be no different as their schedule doesn’t get any easier. On November 23rd, the Wolfpack of North Carolina St comes to Vestal. North Carolina St. is out of the ACC and nationally ranked nearly every year. This is going to be another classic matchup that features a multitude of New York wrestlers. North Carolina State’s ties with the capital Region has plastered their lineup with New York natives.

One can’t disagree with Coach Borshoff’s willingness to seek competition. After taking a look at the schedule arguably two of the toughest in-season tournaments in the country, CKLV Invitational and the Southern Scuffle stick out immediately. This is an excellent example of fortitude and preparation as the Bearcats look to enhance upon their showing at the EIWA and NCAA tournaments.

Before postseason action gets under way the Bearcats will close out their regular season with back to back duals against nationally ranked Cornell and 2019 MAC Runner-Up Buffalo. Both duals are on the road and 6 days apart. For Binghamton to garnish a victory over one or both would be a huge confidence builder as they head into the final stretch of their season.

CLICK HERE for the Bearcats full schedule.

Redshirt Sophomore Lou Deprez is one of three returning NCAA qualifiers from last year’s squad. A 3-2 record at nationals was solid enough to finish 1 round before becoming an All-American. With the bar set higher in 2019-20 anything less than an AA finish would be considered a failure for Deprez. Joining Lou this season is younger brother Sam. Sam just capped off a dominant senior season with a NYS title for Section 5 powerhouse Hilton. It is unsure if Sam is going to redshirt or contend for the starting spot at 197lbs with fellow New York grappler Nunzio Crowley (Eastchester-1).

Binghamton’s lightweights success should be early and often. At 133 and 141 are the other two returning NCAA qualifiers. Zach Trampe (Council Rock (PA)) and Anthony Sparacio (North Babylon-11) would finish 4th and 3rd respectively at the EIWA tournament to punch their bids into the national tournament. Redshirt Junior Audey Ashkar (Liverpool-3) hopes to join Trampe and Sparacio as NCAA qualifiers in 2020. Ashkar would take 7th at the EIWAs to close out his season. With another year under his belt and still at 125lbs, Audey is considered one of the favorites to punch their NCAA ticket this season.

The 149lb class is wide open this season with the departure of Frankie Garcia. Long Island standouts Michael Zarif (Mt. Sinai-11) and Matt Swanson (Lynbrook-8) are in line to contend for the starting position. Another interesting battle may come at 174lbs. Vincent Deprez is graduated and that leaves the door wide open for Redshirt Junior Alex Melikian (Lakeland-Panas-1) or Section 7 standout and 2019 NYS Champion Jacob Nolan (Saranac-7)

Buffalo Bulls Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Kevin Meloni RS-Junior Redshirt
133 Derek Spann RS-Junior 0-2 @ NCAA's
141 Marcus Robinson RS-Freshman Redshirt
149 Chris Meloni Senior Redshirt
157 Hunter Shaut Freshman
165 Troy Keller Senior 1-2 @ NCAA's
174 Jake Lanning RS-Sophomore 4th @ MAC
184 Pete Acciardi RS-Freshman Redshirt
197 Sam Schuyler RS-Sophomore No Postseason
285 Nolan Terrence RS-Senior No Postseason

The Bulls kick off the 2019-20 season this Saturday with a huge bang as they head to East Lansing, Michigan for the Michigan State Open.  The following week doesn’t get any easier as Wisconsin from the B1G comes to town for a Thursday night showdown. A dual meet win versus the Badgers would make a statement before MAC dual meets start in December. Highlighting the Bulls schedule is their dual against LIU Post at the Journeymen Classic. It is truly a privilege to see two lineups made up of mostly New York standouts and gives fans alike a great chance to see potential showdowns between NY greats.

The Bulls kick off their MAC schedule with Cleveland St, a winnable match for sure. Buffalo finished 5-2 in the MAC last season with losses to nationally ranked Missouri and SIU-Edwardsville. Both squads are on the 2019-20 slate early in the season. All eyes are on Missouri however. Buffalo is looking dethrone the reigning regular season and tournament champion Tigers. Buffalo’s 2nd place finish in the MAC tournament last season is a great stepping stone heading into 2019-20.

Click here to view Buffalo's full schedule.

Buffalo has two returners this season with NCAA tournament experience. Troy Keller (North Tonawanda-6) was a 2019 MAC champion for the Bulls. He would go 1-2 at nationals defeating Bryce Martin of Indiana. Redshirt Junior Derek Spann (Adirondack-3) would drop both matches at the NCAA’s to nationally ranked John Erneste of Missouri and Charles Tucker of Cornell. Both Keller and Spann are expected to make a return trip to nationals this season, which are held in Minnesota in late March. The leadership factor that both wrestlers portray will accelerate and propel Buffalo in 2019-20.

The Meloni brothers, Chris (149) and Kevin (125), plan to make a splash this season. They each have a redshirt season under their belt and have adjusted well to the grind of a division 1 wrestler. The back end of the Bulls lineup has UWW 97kg JR Freestyle National Champion Sam Schuyler (Kings Park-11) and Nolan Terrance (Massena-10). Terrance is Section 10’s lone Division 1 NYS Champion in history. It looks as if freshman Hunter Shaut (Central Valley-3) is in line to start at 157lbs. Shaut is a 2x NYS Champion and 3x finalist for the Thunder. Shaut  may be the diamond in the rough this season for the Bulls.

LIU Sharks Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 James Ryan Freshman
133 Michael Blando Freshman
141 Anthony Dushaj Sophomore
149 Rhise Royster Freshman
157 Dominick Demarco Senior
165 Nick Provenzano Sophomore
174 James Langan Sophomore 1-2 @ Super Region 1
184 Dan McClure Senior 6th @ Super Region 1
197 Mark Malico Junior 5th @ Super Region 1
285 Tim Nagosky/Maguire Horl Sophomore/RS-Freshman 0-2 @ Super Region 1

The inaugural season for the now Division 1 LIU  Sharks kicks off this Saturday on the campus of Rutgers University in Piscataway, NJ. Three duals meets are on the slate with the Scarlet Knights out of the B1G right out of the gate. U. of Pittsburgh-Johnstown and Centenary U. will follow thereafter.

The following weekend, LIU  travels north for the Journeymen Classic in Troy. Three more duals highlighted with Buffalo sandwiched in the middle. Both squads have a heavy dose of NYers in their lineups and will be worth the price of admission for any NY wrestling fan.

Most fans look forward to wrestlers throughout the entire state to represent their respective schools at the collegiate level. There are even times when fans are yearning for that D1 vs D2 state champion match or big names squaring off but never get to see due to the D1/D2 format. In college, the New York State Intercollegiate Championships doesn’t segregate D1/D2/D3. All are welcomed and is a fan favorite throughout the Empire State. LIU  will be in attendance with a multitude of Long island studs ready to wrestle.

With November out of the way….EIWA duals start with trip to Drexel. The January 26th dual against Hofstra is one to circle on the calendar and could be deemed a Long island vs Long Island matchup.

Click here to view the Sharks complete schedule.

The Sharks are very deep in regards to our New York competitors. Eight of the ten starters hail from the Empire State. 2019 NYS Champion Jimmy Ryan (Monsignor Farrell-C) and NYS Place Finishers Michael Blando (Massapequa-8) and Anthony Dushaj (HHH West-11) lead the Sharks down low. Up top, James Langan (Wantagh-8) and Dan McClure (Westhampton Beach-11) give LIU Post stability and experience. McClure enters his senior season with a trip to the NCAAs in mind. Langan, although a sophomore, looks to expand upon his 12-8 record last season.

Army Black Knights Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Trey Chalifoux Senior 1-2 @ NCAA's
133 Cole Wyman Sophomore N/A
141 Logan Brown Freshman
149 PJ Ogunsanya Sophomore 6th @ EIWA's
157 Lucas Weiland Senior 1-2 @ NCAA's
165 Cael McCormick Senior 1-2 @ NCAA's
174 Ben Harvey Senior 2-2 @ NCAA's
184 Jed Smith Junior No Postseason
197 JT Brown Sophomore No Postseason
285 Bobby Heald Junior No Postseason

Right out of the gate, The Army Black Knights open up with 2 B1G squads in their first four duals in juggernaut Wisconsin and Illinois. On November 17th, Army host the Black Knight Invite which should be quite the slew of competition. After 2 tournaments (Patriot Open, Midlands) in December, Army opens up EIWA conference foe American U. at the West Point Duals. The Black Knights final 5 duals consists of 4 EIWA opponents followed by the EIWA Championships hosted by Lehigh University.

Check out the Black Knights complete schedule here.

The Black Knights will rely heavily on 30 match winner Ben Harvey at 174lbs. Harvey career at Army escalted in 2019. His 8th place finish at the Midlands launched him into the thick of the season will full force. His lone EIWA loss came to nationally ranked Jordan Kutler of Lehigh. Harvey would go onto finish 5th at the EIWA. He followed that up with a 2-2 record at the NCAA's defeating ranked opponents Dylan Lydy of Purdue and David McFadden of Virginia Tech.

An interesting battle at heavyweight is looming between Bobby Heald (Bedford, NH) and EIWA 6th place finisher Ben Sullivan (New Paris, OH). Both were 20 match winners last season but Sullivan got the nod in the postseason. The two would meet up at the Princeton open with Sullivan winning via injury default. Regardless of the wrestle-off, the Black Knights have two solid heavies on the back end of their lineup.

With Rocco Caywood gone, 197lbs is wide open with a trio of wrestlers vying for the spot. Sophomore JT Brown (Elyria, OH) recorded two victories of Junior Bennett Paulson (Amery, WI) last season but also loss via major decision to Paulson at the Black Knight Invite. The third, senior Alex Hopkins (St. Charles, MO) was a 17 match winner last season. 

Seniors Trey Chalifoux (Nashville, TN) and  Cael McCormick were NCAA Qualifiers in 2019, going 1-2 at 125 and 165 respectively. Both are back for their senior seasons and are hopeful for a return trip to nationals. 

Hofstra Pride Projected Lineup

Weight Name Year 2019 Finish
125 Dylan Ryder Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWA's
133 Jacob Martin Senior 0-2 @ EIWA's
141 Garrett Lambert/Vinny Vespa RS-JR/RS-JR 0-2 @ EIWA's/Injury
149 Holden Heller Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWA's
157 Reece Heller Freshman
165 Ricky Stamm/Ross McFarland RS-JR/Freshman 7th @ EIWA's
174 Ricky Stamm/Ross McFarland RS-JR/Freshman 7th @ EIWA's
184 Trey Rogers Sophomore 1-2 @ EIWA's
197 Ben Somerville Freshman
285 Zachary Knighton-Ward RS-SO N/A

Hofstra kicks off their 2019-20 season with back to back to back tournaments in November. The Princeton Open, Journeymen Classic and the Black Knight Invitational. Three straight Sunday full of wrestling for the Hofstra faithful. 

The first week of December, Coach Papadatos & Co. head west to Las Vegas, Nevada for the always tough Cliff Keen Invitational. This is arguably one of the toughest tournament throughout the season and really starts to separate men from the boys.

Hofstra's EIWA opener comes against Binghamton on January 12th in front of the home crowd at the David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex. Hofstra is looking to avenge a 30-14 loss to the Bearcats last season.

The Pride finished 2-7  in the EIWA in 2018-19.

Check out the Pride's complete schedule here.

Sophomore Dylan Ryder (HHH West-11) was the Pride's only 20 match winner last season and aims to surpass that mark yet again in 2019-20. Ryder's 1-2 performance at the EIWA's doesn't represent his overall progress last season. At one point in the season he tallied 11 straight victories in January/February. Dylan steps into a bigger leadership role for a young Hofstra squad that has only one senior on the roster.

Nassau County stud Ricky Stamm returns for the Pride. Stamm spent time at both 165 and 174 last year. He would go 174lbs at the EIWA's finishing in 7th place. He and Ryder will set the pace this season for the rest of the team. 

With the addition of freshman Ross McFarland (Phoenix-3) at 165/174, the Pride could have quite the 1-2 punch in the middle of their lineup especially if both Stamm and Ross are interchangeable at both weights. Kudos to Coach P. for bringing in a fine young man in McFarland. He and Stamm will compliment each other for the next two seasons and only make each other better.

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