Wrestling Tames Tigers, 23-11

PHILADELPHIA - In its final Ivy League dual of the season, Penn downed Princeton, 23-11, top secure second place in the Ancient Eight.

The Quakers won seven of 10 bouts to tame the Tigers. The biggest swing came at the middle weights, with bonus points by Gabriel Burak and No. 19 Scott Giffin to blow open a close dual. The Red and Blue entered the 165-pound match with a slim 9-8 lead, but after Giffin's major at 174 had pulled away to a 17-8 lead. Freshman Harrison Cook gutted out a 9-8 win in sudden victory to put the Quakers in front by 12. Fellow first-year wrestler Micah Burak iced things with a 7-3 decision at 197.

Penn staked itself to a 9-0 lead with decisions in the first three matches. Mark Rappo edged Garret Frey at 125 by a 3-2 score to start the dual. In a match between wrestlers within close range of each other in the NCAA rankings and the EIWA seeding discussion, Rappo scored first with a takedown at 1:36. Frey worked out at 2:44 to send the bout to the second period 2-1 in favor of Rappo. In the second, Frey escaped at 3:20 to tie the match. Rappo matched the escape in the third, slipping out at 5:35 for the eventual winning point.

After a 6-1 win by Bryan Ortenzio at 133, Zack Kemmerer added to the lead with an 8-5 decision at 141. After his opponent, Luis Ramos, put together a full ride in the second period, Kemmerer opened up in the third with two takedowns to break open a 4-3 match.

Following a pair of defeats at 149 and 157, Gabriel Burak regained momentum for Penn with a 10-1 major decision. Burak came out strong in the first, finally getting past Mike Alvarez' ties for a four-point move at 1:56. Burak had the leg up on the shelf, and tripped Alvarez to his back for a pair of quick nearfall points. He added three more in the second with an escape and a takedown. In the third, after Alzarez was optioned out, Burak came right back with a takedown at 5:46. After the final buzzer, Burak's 4:26 of riding time gave him the 10-1 bonus-point win.

Giffin followed with a physical 13-3 major over Travis Erdman. Giffin came out of the first period with a 6-1 lead after a pair of takedowns and two backpoints. After adding another takedown in the second, Giffin added on four points in the third. He started with a reversal at 5:32 and a takedown near the end at 6:36.

At 184, Cook continued to impress, fighting out of scrambles in the first period to find the takedown. He did so twice, taking a 4-2 lead to the second. Kurt Brendel came back with four points of his own in the second to square the match heading to the third. In the final period, Cook escaped quickly and after a Brendel takedown gave the Tiger a lead late, Cook tied the match at 6:34. In overtime, Cook scored the winning takedown at 7:28.

Penn is back on the mat Feb. 21 at 1 p.m. against No. 7 Lehigh.

Penn defeats Princeton, 23-11
125 - Mark Rappo (Penn) def. Garrett Frey (Princeton), 3-2; Penn leads 3-0
133 - Bryan Ortenzio (Penn) def. Zach Blantiff (Princeton), 6-1; Penn leads 6-0
141 - Zack Kemmerer (Penn) def. Luis Ramos (Princeton), 8-5; Penn leads 9-0
149 - Daniel Kolodzik (Princeton) def. Zack Ellis (Penn), 20-2(4:02), Penn leads 9-5
157 - Danny Scotton (Princeton) def. Troy Hernandez (Penn), 10-4; Penn leads 9-8
165 - Gabriel Burak (Penn) def. Mike Alvarez (Princeton), 10-1; Penn leads 13-8
174 - No. 19 Scott Giffin (Penn) def. Travis Erdman (Princeton), 13-3, Penn leads 17-8
184 - Harrison Cook (Penn) def. Kurt Brendel (Princeton), 9-8 SV, Penn leads 20-8
197 - Micah Burak (Penn) def. Charles Fox (Princeton), 7-3; Penn leads 23-8
285 - Bobby Grogan (Princeton) def. Tyler Blakely (Penn), 5-3; Penn leads 23-11