Lehigh rolls to sixth straight dual win, 31-11 over Bucknell

BETHLEHEM, Pa. -- Powered by five wins via technical fall, No. 15 Lehigh rolled to a 31-11 win over Bucknell Friday night inside Leeman-Turner Arena at Grace Hall. The Mountain Hawks won seven bouts overall including five of the six bouts. Lehigh has now won six straight duals, all against EIWA opponents, to move to 6-3 on the dual season.

"Bucknell is a quality team and we thought it could come down to the end, like the last few weekends have," Lehigh head coach Pat Santoro said. "A lot of the matches went our way tonight, so we're really appreciative of that. We're having a lot of fun right now and we're getting better. That's all we're asking them to do is to keep getting better."

First-year Luke Stanich returned to the Lehigh lineup and delivered the first of Lehigh's five technical fall wins. Stanich led 14-1 after one behind two takedowns and a pair of four-point near falls and added a third takedown early in the second to post a 17-1 technical fall in 3:29.

Sophomore Sheldon Seymour then stepped in and battled No. 14 Kurt Phipps to the brink at 133. The only scoring in the bout came on a Phipps second period escape. Seymour was in on a shot in the final seconds of the third period but was unable to secure the winning takedown as Bucknell (7-7) captured its first win of the night.

Junior Malyke Hines started a run of four straight Lehigh wins with a 21-6 technical fall over Dylan Chappell at 141. Hines gave up the first takedown but came back with a far side cradle for a takedown and four near fall to end the first period. He used another cradle in the second for four more back points and added a reversal and a takedown in the third period to go up by 15 with riding time at the 7:00 mark.

First-year Kelvin Griffin used a second period reversal and third period rideout to defeat Riley Bower 3-1 at 149.

The first half of the dual concluded with Lehigh's third technical fall, as junior Max Brignola won 20-5 in 4:47 over Aiden Davis at 157. Brignola sandwiched two first period takedowns around a Davis takedown in the first period and added a reversal, takedown and two sets of near fall points in the second period to secure the technical fall.

Coming out of the break, junior Jake Logan kept things going with a top-15 win over Noah Mulvaney at 165. Logan scored the first takedown and was awarded a key three points late in the second period to lead 7-5 after two. Two Logan escapes in the third offset a Mulvaney takedown as Logan was able to defend at the end and hold on for the 9-8 decision.

"Jake needs to find that switch and he certainly found it tonight," Santoro said. "It could be big for him moving forward because this is the time you want to do it, February and March. I'm really happy for Jake. That's a really good, quality win."

Bucknell claimed the next two bouts with Myles Takats winning an 18-3 technical fall over sophomore Connor Herceg at 174 and Mikey Bartush scoring two third-period takedowns to defeat sophomore Jack Wilt 7-1 at 184.

Lehigh closed out the dual with two more technical falls. At 197, junior Michael Beard claimed his NCAA-best 13th technical fall of the year, scoring seven first period takedowns to defeat Logan Deacetis 21-6 in 2:40.

Sophomore heavyweight Nathan Taylor closed things out with a second period tech fall over No. 26 Dorian Crosby, winning 17-2 in 4:55. Taylor secured four takedowns, a late first period four point near fall and a second period escape.

"Scoring points is always the goal," Santoro said. "If you focus on scoring points, you're not worried about winning and losing. We did a really nice job tonight."

Friday night's dual was Legacy of Champions Night, with Lehigh legends Mike Caruso '67, Darian Cruz '18 and Jordan Wood '22 meeting with fans prior to the match and being recognized at intermission.

The Mountain Hawks are back home next Saturday, Feb. 17 to host EIWA rival Princeton at 7 p.m. Next Saturday's match will be Alumni Night and Senior Night as the Mountain Hawks recognize their senior class and alumni, highlighted by legendary former coach Thad Turner. Tickets can be purchased at LehighTickets.com or by calling 610-758-4263 during business hours.

The 2023-24 Lehigh wrestling season is presented by the Historic Hotel Bethlehem.

125 – Luke Stanich (Lehigh) tech fall Kade Davidheiser (Bucknell) 17-1, 3:29
133 – Kurt Phipps (Bucknell) dec. Sheldon Seymour (Lehigh) 1-0
141 – Malyke Hines (Lehigh) tech fall Dylan Chappell (Bucknell) 21-6, 7:00
149 – Kelvin Griffin (Lehigh) dec. Riley Bower (Bucknell) 3-1
157 – Max Brignola (Lehigh) tech fall Aiden Davis (Bucknell) 20-5, 4:47
165 – Jake Logan (Lehigh) dec. Noah Mulvaney (Bucknell) 9-8
174 – Myles Takats (Bucknell) tech fall Connor Herceg (Lehigh) 18-3, 7:00
184 – Mikey Bartush (Bucknell) dec. Jack Wilt (Lehigh) 7-1
197 – Michael Beard (Lehigh) tech fall Logan Deacetis (Bucknell) 21-6, 2:40
285 – Nathan Taylor (Lehigh) tech fall Dorian Crosby (Bucknell) 17-2, 4:55
Attendance – 1,404