The Ithaca College wrestling team took on some of the stiffest competitors in the state of New York on Nov. 22 during the New York State Collegiate Championships at Cornell University where the Blue and Gold placed sixth overall and first among Division III schools at the competition.
For the Bombers, 78 points was good enough for sixth out of 26 teams. Cornell University hosted the event and used that advantage to bring home the title, winning with a score of 202. Rounding out the top five were the United State Military Academy with 171, Binghamton University with 133.5, Buffalo State University with 126 and Columbia University with 123.5.
Senior Dan Pak led the way for the Bombers, coming out on top in the 149-pound class. Pak earned two consecutive pins over Colin Hopkins from Nassau Community College and Javier Rodriguez from Army to advance to the quarterfinals.
From there, he got past Tyler Ponte from Columbia 5–3 in the semifinals and concluded the event with a 5–2 championship victory over Mark Marchetti from Army.
Pak was not the only successful Bombers’ participant, as six others from the South Hill squad finished in eighth place or better at the state championships.
Juniors Jimmy Kaishian and Carlos Toribio placed fourth in the 125 pound and 184 pound weight classes, respectively, while sophomores Bryan Israel and Nick Velez placed seventh in the 133 and 165 weight classes, respectively. Senior Eamonn Gaffney and junior Matt Booth finished eighth in the 157 and 285 weight classes, respectively.
The Bombers’ sixth-place finish was an improvement on last year’s outing at the state championship, where the Bombers placed 10th.
The Bombers will be back in action at 9 a.m. Dec. 5 when they travel to York, Pennsylvania, for the annual Spartan Invitational.