Third-Ranked Wrestling Takes Second at NWCA National Duals

Third-Ranked Wrestling Takes Second at NWCA National Duals

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Johnson & Wales University wrestling team reached the finals of the National Wrestling Coaches Association National Duals for the first time in program history and came within two matches of capturing the title. The third-ranked Wildcats dropped a 20-13 decision to No. 1 Augsburg in Saturday's finals.

Johnson & Wales started the day by defeating #2 Wartburg, 18-17, in the semifinals. In the previous five losses to Knights, JWU had only scored 33 points.

Just as it had done all weekend, the Wildcats were dominant in the opening matches against Augsburg. The first three bouts pitted returning All-Americans against each other. Second-ranked Jay Albis recorded an 11-2 major decision over No. 6 Victor Gliva at 125 pounds.

Senior Bobby Jordan pulled off a 13-7 upset of second-ranked Sam Bennyhoff at 133 pounds. In the 141-pound match, No. 7 Joe Ferinde lost a narrow 2-1 decision to third-ranked David Flynn. Also notching an upset was No. 3 Da'mani Burns as he beat #1 Alex Wilson, 8-6, in the sudden victory period.

The Auggies rallied to take the next three matches. Seventh-ranked Khamri Thomas defeated Solomon Nielson, 8-4, at 184 pounds to close the margin to 14-13. Unfortunately, No. 5 Michael DiNardo dropped a 7-3 bout at 197 pounds to #4 Lance Benick.

For the second day in a row, the match was solidified by the tandem of Thomas and DiNardo. The Knights took three-straight matches to establish a 14-12 lead. Thomas pulled JWU ahead, 15-14, with his 4-1 win over Isiah Cox. DiNardo defeated No. 6 Kobe Woods, 5-3, for an 18-14 lead.

Johnson & Wales took three of the first four matches. Albis defeated #10 Brady Kyner, 10-3. Ferinde beat Kristian Rumph, 4-3, and Burns pinned Brady Fritz in 2:23.

JWU is on the road January 13 when it travels to Coast Guard to take on the Bears, Norwich and Southern Maine.

#3 Johnson & Wales 18, #2 Wartburg 17
125       #2 Jay Albis (JWU) over #10 Brady Kyner (WC) Decision 10-3                           3-0
133       #1 Brock Rathbun (WC) over Bobby Jordan (JWU) Decision 11-5                       3-3
141       #7 Joe Ferinde (JWU) over Kristian Rumph (WC) Decision 4-3                           6-3
149       #3 Da'mani Burns (JWU) over Brady Fritz (WC) Fall 2:23                                   12-3
157       #1 Cross Cannone (WC) over Thomas Grippi (JWU) Tech Fall 15-0                    12-8
165       #9 Mike Ross (WC) over Adrian Gonzalez (JWU) Decision 8-2                           12-11
174       #4 Kyle Briggs (WC) over Michael Gargano (JWU) Decision 7-0                         12-14
184       #3 Khamri Thomas (JWU) over Isaiah Cox (WC) Decision 4-1                            15-14
197       #5 Michael DiNardo (JWU) over #6 Kobe Woods (WC) Decision 5-3                   18-14
285       Bowen Wileman (WC) over Tommy Wrzesien (JWU) Decision 11-4                    18-17

#1 Augsburg 20, #3 Johnson & Wales 13
125       #2 Jay Albis (JWU) over #6 Victor Gliva (AU) Major Decision 11-2                      4-0
133       Bobby Jordan (JWU) over #2 Sam Bennyhoff (AU) Decision 13-7                       7-0
141       #3 David Flynn (AU) over #7 Joe Ferinde (JWU) Decision 2-1                       7-3
149       #3 Da'mani Burns (JWU) over #1 Alex Wilson (AU) Decision SV-1 8-6                10-3
157       #1 Ryan Epps (AU) over Thomas Grippi (JWU) Decision 4-0                              10-6
165       Lucas Jeske (AU) over Adrian Gonzalez (JWU) Decision 9-2                              10-9
174       #4 Tanner Vassar (AU) over Michael Gargano (JWU) Tech Fall 17-2                  10-14
184       #3 Khamri Thomas (JWU) over Solomon Nielsen (AU) Decision 8-4                    13-14
197       #4 Lance Benick (AU) over #5 Michael DiNardo (JWU) Decision 7-3                   13-17
285       Ethan Hofacker (AU) over Jayson Gomez (JWU) Decision 2-0                            13-20