PHILADELPHIA – On a snowy day in Philadelphia, Penn’s attack went cold in a 21-12 loss to No. 23 Lehigh inside The Palestra.
The Quakers were unable to get anything going early in the dual, dropping the first five matches as Lehigh jumped out to a 15-0 lead. The Red and Blue would win three of the next four to climb within six points with one match to go, but could not complete the miracle comeback.
No. 9 Lorenzo Thomas had the biggest win for Penn, coming up with a fall at 184 points in the third period to close the deficit to six points with one match to go. Thomas was on fire to start the bout, taking Zach Diekel down five seconds in and adding three nearfall before the end of the first period. Thomas added two more takedowns before finding the fall, working a trip to bring Diekel down and then patiently securing a cradle and stepping over to lock Diekel’s shoulders on the mat at 6:36.
Steve Robertson had another dominant win for the Quakers, bumping up a weight to 165 and beating Michael Stepien, 9-3. Robertson had three takedowns in the match, one in each period. He added 2:10 of riding time for his first dual win of the season.
Casey Kent, ranked No 13 at 165 pounds, bumped up to 174 in a strategic move as the Quakers tried to mount a rally with usual starter Brad Wukie out due to injury. The move almost paid off as Kent took No. 18 Elliot Riddick to the final whistle before dropping a 4-3 decision. Riddick had the first takedown in the opening period, but Kent tied the game with escapes in the first period and the second. In the third, Riddick took the lead with a reversal, but Kent escaped to close within one late. Kent appeared to have a takedown in the final seconds, but did not get the call and Riddick snagged the one-point win.
The Quakers are off until the Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn. Jan. 1-2.
#23 Lehigh defeats Penn, 21-12
285: Doug Vollaro (Lehigh) dec. Steven Graziano (Penn), 5-1 Lehigh leads, 3-0
125: Darien Cruz (Lehigh) dec. Caleb Richardson (Penn), 7-3 Lehigh leads, 6-0
133: #7 Mason Beckman (Lehigh) dec. Ken Bade (Penn), 6-2 Lehigh leads, 9-0
141: #16 Laike Gardiner (Lehigh) dec. Jeff Canfora (Penn), 8-7 Lehigh leads, 12-0
149: Mitch Minotti (Lehigh) dec. Andrew Lenzi (Penn), 2-0 Lehigh leads, 15-0
157: Ray Bethea (Penn) dec. Will Switzer (Lehigh), 7-6 Lehigh leads, 15-3
165: Steve Robertson (Penn) dec. Michael Stepien (Lehigh), 9-3 Lehigh leads, 15-6
174: #18 Elliot Riddick (Lehigh) dec. #13 (165) Casey Kent (Penn), 4-3 Lehigh leads, 18-6
184: #9 Lorenzo Thomas (Penn) WBF Zachary Diekel (Lehigh), 6:36 Lehigh leads, 18-12
197: John Bollich (Lehigh) dec. #19 Frank Mattiace (Penn), 1-0 Lehigh leads, 21-12