LEWISBURG, Pa. – The Bucknell wrestling team will travel to Annapolis, Md. for the 2017 Navy Classic on Saturday, Nov. 18. The Bison will look to build on last year’s fourth-place finish while Tyler Smith will strive to defend his 141 individual title.
The preliminary rounds are set to begin at 10 a.m. The semifinals are projected to start at 2:30 p.m. and the finals at 4:30 p.m.
2017 Navy Classic
When: Saturday, Nov. 18 – 10 a.m.
Where: Wesley Brown Field House – Annapolis, Md.
Participating Teams: American, Brown, Bucknell, Campbell, The Citadel, Columbia, Delaware Valley, George Mason, Hofstra, Indiana, Kent State, Navy, Ohio, Old Dominion, Oregon State, Princeton and Purdue
Live Results: FloWrestling.org
Follow on Twitter: @Bucknell_WRST
A Look Back at Last Week
• The Bison faced a pair of ranked opponents last week in No. 10 Lehigh and No. 1 Penn State. They fell to both the Mountain Hawks (2-36) at Sojka Pavilion and the Nittany Lions (6-36) at Rec Hall.
• Tyler Smith improved to 3-0 on the season by topping Luke Karam during the Lehigh dual. Smith scored a takedown late in the third period and then picked up the bonus point for having more than a minute of riding time to win the 141 bout by a 5-3 decision.
• Against Penn State, Jakob Campbell edged Devin Schnupp at 125 while Garrett Hoffman earned a hard-fought victory over Anthony Cassar at 197.
• Campbell won by a 3-1 decision. He opened the scoring with a first-period takedown; after giving up an escape to start the second period, he opened the third with an escape of his own to build his two-point edge. He ultimately held off Schnupp the rest of the way to score his first win on one of collegiate wrestling’s biggest stages.
• Hoffman controlled large swaths of his bout with Cassar. Entering the final frame, he held a 7-2 lead and a 2:07 edge in riding time. Cassar battled back, scoring three takedowns, but Hoffman pulled off a late escape and secured the bonus point for having a 1:38 advantage in riding time to win by an 11-8 decision.
Bucknell at a Glance
• The Bison are currently 0-4 (0-1 EIWA) this season. Three of their four opponents were ranked at the time of their meeting.
• Bucknell went 12-4 (9-1 EIWA) in 2016-17
• The Bison closed the 2016-17 regular-season portion of their schedule on a 10-match winning streak, one victory shy of the school record that spanned parts of the 1987-88 and 1988-89 campaigns.
• Bucknell hosted the EIWA Championships and placed sixth, with Tom Sleigh (197) and Tyler Smith (141) earning auto bids to the 2017 NCAA Wrestling Championships after finishing second and fourth respectively.
• Sleigh and Smith, both three-time NCAA qualifiers, were joined at the national championships by at-large selections Victor Lopez (157) and Garrett Hoffman (184).
• With Hoffman, Sleigh and Smith back in 2017-18, the Bison boast a combined seven NCAA appearances.
• Dan Wirnsberger, who has led Bucknell since 2005, entered the 2017-18 campaign with 110 victories. He is just one of two Bison coaches to eclipse the 100-win plateau, joining Bob Ferraro, who compiled a 169-175-6 record from 1974 to 1997.
• In 2017, Smith was one match away from being crowned a 2017 All-American. Sleigh entered his senior campaign with 89 career victories, which is tied for 11th in school history.
• This season, the Bison will face four teams ranked in the preseason top 25 in the first two months: unanimous No. 1 Penn State (Nov. 12), No. 10 Lehigh (Nov. 10), Nov. 24 Pitt (Dec. 17) and No. 25 Edinboro (Nov. 5).
The 2016 Navy Classic
• The Bison placed fourth at the 2016 Navy Classic. It was their highest finish at the event since they took third in 2011.
• Tyler Smith (141) and Victor Lopez (157) won individual titles. Smith posted two bonus-point victories while Lopez won twice by fall and once by tech fall.
• Drew Phipps (2nd at 197), Tom Sleigh (3rd at 197), Zach Firestone (4th at 133), Tyler Greene (5th at 285) and Garrett Hoffman (6th at 184) were Bucknell's other placewinners.
• Phipps and Sleigh gave Bucknell two of the top three places at 197. Phipps won three-straight bouts to advance to the championship before falling to Navy’s Steban Cervantes, 7-3. Sleigh lost to Cervantes in the semifinal but came back to defeat Kent State’s Stephen Suglio in the third-place match.
A Look Ahead
• The Bison next compete at the Cliff Keen Invitational on Friday, Dec. 1 to Saturday, Dec. 2 in Las Vegas, N.V.