Columbia Upsets No. 16 Wrestling, 22-12

NEW YORK CITY – The No. 16 Penn wrestling team dropped its second dual meet in a row Saturday night, falling to Columbia, 22-12, at University Gymnasium.

The Quakers (7-7) dropped their first three bouts starting at 197 pounds before No. 1 Matt Valenti picked up a win at 133 lbs. Penn, however, lost at 141 and 149 to fall into a 15-3 hole, and despite a pin by Matt Dragon at 157 and a win by Zack Shanaman at 165, Matt Herrington was majored at 174 to give the Lions an insurmountable lead.

Columbia’s win broke a 12-meet winning streak by Penn – the Lions’ last win came on Jan. 29, 1993.

Jack Sullivan dropped a tough 12-11 decision to start the meet at 197 lbs. Sullivan stayed with Nick Sommerfeld the entire bout but Sommerfeld scored a late reversal to secure the win despite Sullivan’s takedown with a second left.

Ben Reiter lost 13-8 to Kevin Lester at heavyweight before Brandon Kinney upset No. 16 Matt Eveleth at 125 in sudden victory. Kinney scored on a takedown early and Eveleth got a pair of escapes to send the bout to sudden victory. In the extra frame, Kinney managed a takedown on the edge of the mat to end it.

Valenti pulled back three points with a 7-2 decision over Matt Delorenzo, but tight losses by Brett McCurdy and Rick Rappo put Penn back into a 15-3 hole.

At 157, Dragon got Penn its lone bonus points of the night. Up 2-1 to start the second, Devin Mesanko chose bottom and Dragon went to work, riding hard and locking in his tilt to score the fall.

Zack Shanaman made it two in a row with his 11-6 decision over Ricky Turk, but the final two matches proved to be Penn’s downfall.

In a battle of ranked grapplers at 174, No. 10 Matt Herrington was beaten by No. 18 Matt Palmer by an 11-1 scoreline thanks to a dominating second period by Palmer. With Herrington on bottom, Palmer first used a tilt to score a near-fall two, then used a lift to get three back points en route to the victory.

It was the same story at 184 as No. 13 Lior Zamir and #14 Justin Barent battled through a tight first period before Barent went off in the second with a takedown and a near-fall three. Barent nearly pinned Zamir at the tail-end of the period, but the Penn junior was barely saved by the buzzer.

Penn caps off its home slate next Saturday when it hosts Nebraska at 2 p.m. on Senior Day at The Palestra.

22, No. 16 Penn 12

197 – Nick Sommerfeld (C) def. Jack Sullivan; D, 12-11

285 – Kevin Lester (C) def. Ben Reiter; D, 13-8

125 - Brandon Kinney (C) def. #16 Matt Eveleth; D-SV, 4-2

133 - #1 Matt Valenti (P) def. Matt DeLorenzo; D, 7-2

141 – Sal Tirico (C) def. Brett McCurdy; D, 6-3

149 – Matt Dunn (C) def. Rick Rappo; D, 9-6

157 – #20 Matt Dragon (P) def. Devin Mesanko; F, 3:45

165 - #17 Zack Shanaman (P) def. Ricky Turk; D, 11-6

174 - #18 Matt Palmer (C) def. #10 Matt Herrington; MD, 11-1

184 - #14 Justin Barent (C) def. #13 Lior Zamir; D, 11-4