After Navy opened the dual with a victory at 133-pounds, Rutgers used a 6-1 decision by Trevor Melde (Hewitt, N.J.) and a 10-2 major decision from Mario Mason (Moorestown, N.J.) to turn to 3-0 deficit into a 7-3 lead heading into a showdown between ranked grapplers at 157-pounds.
At 157-pounds, No. 16 Daryl Cocozzo (River Edge, N.J.) took on sixth-ranked Bryce Saddoris. After a scoreless first, Saddoris started down to begin the second and quickly earned an escape to take the 1-0 lead which he took into the final period. In the third, Cocozzo chose down and escaped with 1:50 remaining in the final frame to even the match. After the two wrestlers felt each other out, Cocozzo shot on Saddoris and earned a takedown with a minute left on the clock. Saddoris escaped with 39 seconds remaining but Cocozzo was able to hold him at bay for the remainder of the bout to earn the upset with a 3-2 decision.
The Cocozzo upset seemed to spark the Scarlet Knights as Scott Winston (Jackson, N.J) and Alex Caruso (Green Brook, N.J.) earned a decision and a major respectively to push the RU lead to 17-3;
The match at 184-pounds provided the most drama of the night as Dan Rinaldi (Lodi, N.J.) took on No. 11 Luke Rebertus. After the two grapplers exchanged a pair of escapes in regulation the match went into overtime where after two sudden victory frames and a tie breaker neither wrestler was able to score a point. In the second tie breaker each wrestler was able to earn an escape to send the match into a third sudden victory period tied, 2-2. After another two sudden victory frames and another tiebreaker no additional points were scored sending the match into a fourth tiebreaker. Rinaldi started down to start the fourth tiebreaker frame and Rebertus rode him out to set up an escape and win situation. Rinaldi rode Rebertus out for a majority of the frame but Rebertus was able to escape with just a second left to earn the victory which was highly contested by the RU bench leading to a warning on the RU coaching staff.
RU didnâ€™t let the controversy at 184-pounds affect them as they cruised to victories at 197 and 285-pounds. Mike Wagner (South Plainfield, N.J.) earned a 6-1 decision over Greg Prioleau at 197 and DJ Russo (Netcong, N.J.) earned a 3-1 decision over Mike Landis at heavyweight to push the Scarlet Knights advantage to 23-6.
A Navy victory at 125-pounds ended the evening on a sour note for RU but the Scarlet Knights were still able to take home their 19th dual victory of the season by a 23-9 margin.
Rutgers returns to action on Wednesday, Feb. 9, when they host EIWA rival American in a 6:30 dual at College Ave. Gym.
Tickets are on sale now for all of RUâ€™s remaining duals. To purchase tickets please visit http://tickets.scarletknights.com or call 866-445-GoRU (4678).
Rutgers 23, Navy 9
133 â€“ Allen Stein (N) win by dec Mike DeMarco (R), 6-4; Navy leads 3-0
141 â€“ Trevor Melde (R) win by dec Dustin Haislip (N), 6-1; Match tied 3-3
149 â€“ #4 Mario Mason (R) win by major Collin Leadbeter (N), 10-2; Rutgers leads, 7-3
157 â€“ #16 Daryl Cocozzo (R) win by dec #6 Bryce Saddoris (N), 3-2; Rutgers leads, 10-3
165 â€“ #6 Scott Winston (R) win by dec Mason Bailey (N), 9-3; Rutgers leads, 13-3
174 â€“ #18 Alex Caruso (R) wins by major Oscar Huntley (N), 11-2; Rutgers leads, 17-3
184 â€“ #11 Luke Rebertus (N)â€ˆwins by dec Dan Rinaldi (R), 3-2 (TB4); Rutgers leads, 17-6
197 â€“ Mike Wagner (R) wins by dec Greg Prioleau (N), 6-1; Rutgers leads, 20-6
HWT â€“ #3 DJ Russo (R) wins by dec Mike Landis (N), 3-1; Rutgers leads, 23-6
125 â€“ Aaron Kalil (N) wins by dec Joe Langel (R), 10-4; Rutgers wins, 23-9
Courtesy of Rutgers Sports Information