No. 25 Penn Wrestling Gears Up for Busy Ivy Weekend at The Palestra

This Week: The Quakers (4-2, 1-1 Ivy League) have a mix of Ancient Eight and non-league competition as they host Harvard (0-6, 0-0 Ivy League) and Franklin & Marshall (3-12) on Feb. 4 followed by Brown (3-5, 0-0 Ivy League) and North Carolina (3-5) on Feb. 5.

Next Up: The Red and Blue will return to the mats after a two-week hiatus when they take on Princeton at noon on Feb. 19 during Senior Day. The dual meet season concludes on Feb. 20 when Penn travels to No. 4 Lehigh.

No. 25 Penn vs. Harvard: Penn holds a 14-match winning streak against Harvard. Last season, the Quakers evened up the series record (30-30-2) with a 29-8 win on Feb. 7, 2004 in Cambridge, Mass. Penn won the first meeting between the two schools on March 2, 1929 and under Coach Roger Reina, the Quakers are 14-4 against the Crimson. Senior Matt Feast is the only Quaker to see a member of the Crimson this season defeating No. 7 Bode Ogunwole, 3-2, in the quarterfinals of the Midlands Championships.

No. 25 Penn vs. Franklin & Marshall: The Quakers and the Diplomats will meet for the first time since 2000 when Penn came away with the 44-6 victory. The Red and Blue has taken the last five meetings from the Diplomats, yet Franklin & Marshall hold a 26-21-1 overall advantage.

No. 25 Penn vs. Brown: Penn also has another winning streak going against Brown, having won the last 11 contests, including a 25-13 victory last season. The Quakers are 26-19 all-time and met for the first time in Weightman Gym on Jan. 23, 1926, with Brown taking home a 15-11 victory.

Brown at the 2004 Keystone Classic: Brown finished fifth at the 2004 Keystone Classic with several placewinners included 125-pounder Jeff Schell (3rd), 157-pounder Dave Saadeh (5th), 184-pounder Dorian Heist (3rd), and 197-pounder Leo Saniuk (5th). Several Quakers matched up against the Bears during Keystone competition. Senior Rich Ferguson need just three wins to claim the 165 lbs. crown. All three wins came against members of the Bears’ squad: Radu Brestyan (6-2), Heath Lohrman (2-0) and Joe Maroney (8-3). At 157, three Quakers, rookies Chris Banket and Zach Shanaman and sophomore Brock Wittmeyer matched up with Saadeh. Wittmeyer was the only one to earn a victory, posting a 9-3 decision as Shanaman fell to the Bear in the fifth place bout.

Penn vs. North Carolina: The Quakers haven’t had much luck against North Carolina as the Tar Heels are a perfect 4-0. The two teams last met during the 1996-97 season at the ACC-EIWA Challenge in which UNC came away with the 24-15 win.

Last Time Out: Penn opened the Ivy League and EIWA season on the road splitting contests with Columbia and No. 14 Cornell on Jan. 28 and Jan. 29. The Red and Blue handed the Lions a 21-13 loss in the Ivy Opener and secured Coach Roger Reina’s 200th career win. Six Quakers earned victories, including senior Jeff Eveleth who picked up his fourth pin of the season. Penn struggled the next day against a very tough Big Red line-up, falling 30-3. Senior Matt Feast grabbed Penn’s lone points on the board with a 11-5 decision over Tyler Shovlin. four of the 10 matches where decided by one point or less while another was decided after two overtime periods.

Penn and the Ivy League: For the last 10 years the Quakers have been a prominent force in the Ivy League, earning a 51-5-1 record, six outright League titles and two shared. Cornell is next on that list going 46-8-1 with two outright and two shared titles. The Quakers finished the 2003-04 season with a 4-1 Ivy League, good for second in the Ancient Eight.

Penn and the EIWA: The Red and Blue has had success in the EIWA with four team titles. Since 1996, Penn has produced the most EIWA individual champions with 30 and 59 NCAA qualifiers. Lehigh is next with 21 EIWA champions and 56 NCAA qualifiers. Last season, the Quakers finished second at the EIWA Championships, crowning three EIWA Champions, including two-time champion Matt Feast at heavyweight. Matt Valenti won his first EIWA title after he defeated Lehigh’s Mario Stewart, 8-2, at 125 pounds and Doug McGraw defeated Lehigh’s Cory Cooperman, 10-8 in overtime, at 141, also to claim his first EIWA title.

Climbing the 100-Win Ladder: Senior Matt Feast is quickly moving up Penn’s all-time wins list. With 107 victories entering this weekend’s duals, he is poised to surpass two-time All-American Rick Springman (109) and two-time All-American and Olympic Gold Medalist Brandon Slay (110). Two-time All American and NCAA Champion Brett Matter leads the way with 128 victories followed by two-time All-American Yoshi Nakamura with 115 wins. Feast became the fifth wrestler in program history to notch 100 victories on Dec. 29, notching his historic win during the first round of competition at the 42nd Midlands Championships by defeating Chad Barkalow of Iowa, 3-1. The two-time All-American took Barkalow down in the first 50 seconds of the first period and recorded an escape in the third to secure the win.

Everything Eveleth: Senior Jeff Eveleth has been on a hot streak as of late, winning five of his last seven matches, including four in a row. Eveleth’s streak began during Penn’s triple header against No. 7 Hofstra, Wagner and Drexel on Jan. 16. The 133-pounder posted three victories, including a come-from-behind win over a nationally-ranked opponent and an overtime victory. For his efforts he was named Penn Student-Athlete of the Week. Eveleth, a 133-pounder, opened the afternoon by pinning No. 17 Charles Griffin of Hofstra with one second remaining in the match. Trailing 5-4 in the final seconds, Eveleth took Griffin down and then pinned him for the victory. For his second win of the day, Eveleth bumped up to 141 pounds and defeated Wagner’s Michael Tutunjian, 11-10. In his final match of the day against Zach Makovsky of Drexel, Eveleth posted a 7-5 decision in overtime. Eveleth currently leads the team in points (21) and is tied for the team lead in falls with four.

Wiles Winning Ways: Junior Dustin Wiles has been making the most of his opportunity at 174 lbs. The Farmington, Mo. native posts a 17-8 overall record and a 4-2 mark in duals while leading the team in falls with four. Wiles earned his first victory over a ranked opponent in five chances with a 3-1 decision over No. 10 Paul Siemon of Hofstra on Jan. 16. His matches against ranked opponents have been close; three of his losses have been within one point and the other was a two-point differential.

Standing Strong: In 23 bouts this season, senior Matt Feast has only been taken down seven times and his opponents have only managed to accrue 23 seconds of riding time. In comparison, Feast has posted 55 takedowns and earned more than 19 minutes of riding time.

200 Wins and Counting: Head Coach Roger Reina, the winningest coach in program history, recorded his 200th career victory on Jan. 28 at Columbia. Reina, in his 19th season at the helm, has held the position of head coach longer than any other in program history and his win totals are more than double of any of his predecessors. Reina’s guidance has produced 14 winning seasons in the past 18 years. Out of the six current Ivy League head coaches, only Dave Amato of Brown has more career victories. Amato sports a 323-197-3 overall record in 27 seasons and a 261-162-3 mark during his 21 years at the helm of the Bears.

Can’t Pin ‘Em Down: Five Quakers - Dustin Wiles, Marcus Schontube, Matt Feast, Jeff Eveleth, Doug McGraw - have yet to be pinned this season.

Fastest Falls: Rookie Chris Banket has posted two falls this season, both of which came in less than 40 seconds. Banket pinned Ohio State’s Nick Harpster in 39 seconds at the Brockport Oklahoma Gold. His next pin came against Wagner’s Freddy Pontoriero which came 33 seconds into the match.

Download: 2-4 Notes.pdf