Oswego State’s wrestling team fell to SUNY Cortland on Saturday in its final home dual meet of the season, 40-8.
The Red Dragons (13-3) went into Max Ziel Gymnasium ranked fifth in the nation according to the NCAA national rankings. The Lakers (3-9) came in after a dominating win over Alfred State on Feb. 4.
Oswego State’s James Ronca, wrestling in the 125-pound weight class, looked like he had the upper hand throughout his match, before losing by pin fall to Cortland’s Paul Fields 5:44 into the match.
Ronca was winning 8-6 before the pin in the third period. Cortland gained a 6-0 advantage in the meet after Fields’ win.
Quamaine Thomas wrestled for the Lakers in the 133-pound weight class against the Red Dragons’ Troy Feniger. The first period ended without a score, but Thomas was able to score an escape to put points on the board in the second period.
Feniger took Thomas down and scored two back points, giving him a 4-1 lead. Thomas turned Feniger for two back points of his own and gained a point for riding time to send the match into overtime.
With one minute to take down his opponent, Thomas quickly took down his opponent and won, making the overall meet score 6-3.
Thomas said he knew how important it was for him to win his match, saying that he “was not going to give up a point for my team” in the third period of the match. He said he told himself “I have to get this take down, I want to finish this match.”
The Red Dragons’ Tony Battista would tech fall Tomas Garcia at 141-pounds, 4:30 into the match giving his team an 11-3 lead.
Abubakarr Sow would come out with a tech fall of his own for the Lakers 4:13 into the match. Oswego State only trailed by three with Cortland’s lead cut down to 11-8.
Two pins and a forfeit for a total of six straight losses for the Lakers would seal the win for the Red Dragons.
Junior captain Scott Bova wrestled in the 184-pound weight class for the Lakers, but lost to Brian Bulger in a 6-5 decision. While Bova held off his opponent for most of the match, a couple of big double-leg takedowns allowed Bulger to score points.
The match was tied going into the third period, but a locked hands violation gave Bulger the lead. With seconds left in the match, Bova attempted to take Bulger down and appeared to have the control needed to be awarded points, but the referee saw it differently and Bova lost the match.
This ultimately did not have any bearing on the end result of the dual meet, as Oswego State was already down 25-8 before Bova’s match against Bulger.
Oswego State captain Branden Jones wrestled in the 285-pound weight class against Lance Moore and was pinned 1:22 into the match. Jones weighed in at around 195 pounds that day, but has stepped up to fill the role of heavyweight for the team due to injury.
“I was confident, but he’s very good,” Jones said of his opponent. “I’m going to go 285 [for the rest of the season] and see what I can do, maybe knock some people out.”
The Lakers go on to participate in the Wesleyan Quad on Feb. 16 in Middletown, Conn. before attending NCAA Northeast Regionals the first weekend in March.