McNamara Named Rookie of the Year; Spartans Finish Third at 2016 UAA Wrestling Championships

McNamara Named Rookie of the Year; Spartans Finish Third at 2016 UAA Wrestling Championships

Case Western Reserve University freshman Brian McNamara was named the University Athletic Association Rookie of the Year, as the Spartans finished third at the 2016 UAA Wrestling Championships, hosted by the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois on Saturday afternoon.

McNamara defeated NYU's Santino Pelusi by decision, 4-0, in the first match of the day, and earned a victory by forfeit during the team's match against the University of Chicago.  He became the first CWRU wrestler since Josh Hall in 2013 and the sixth Spartan overall to be selected as the conference Rookie of the Year, which was first awarded at the 2001 UAA Championships.  McNamara was also the All-UAA wrestler in the 285-pound weight class, becoming the 12th Spartan heavyweight to earn the honor, and the first since Dale English in 2013.

The Spartans finished third in the team standings, after falling 36-12 to 15th-ranked New York University, and dropping a 36-11 match to the University of Chicago.  New York University would eventually win the UAA Championships, its fifth-straight, with a 22-16 win over the Chicago.

The Spartans dropped to 1-7 on the season, while Chicago now stands at 5-10, and New York University eneded the day with a 13-5 record.

#15 New York University 36, Case Western Reserve 12
The Spartans rallied late in their first match of the day, winning the final three bouts against the 15th-ranked team in the NWCA Division III rankings.  Down 36-0, CWRU sophomore Cito Balsells picked up a win by forfeit in the 184-pound match to score six points and put the Spartans on the board.  Freshman Gavin Dersh-Fisher utilized an escape late in the third period to earn a 4-3 victory by decision in the 197-pound match over NYU's Mark Papish, cutting the Violets' advantage to 36-9.  In the heavyweight bout, McNamara broke a scoreless tie heading into the final period, scoring four points during the frame en route to a 4-0 decision over Santino Pelusi.

Match Results:
125 - Wayne Yuan (NYU) def. Matt Moy (CWR), 5-3 SV1 decision
133 - Nathan Pike (NYU) won via forfeit
141 - Anthony Calvano (NYU) pinned Connor Howlin (CWR) at 2:17
149 - Nick Matthews (NYU) won via forfeit
157 - Raymond Jazikoff (NYU) def. Connor Gordon (CWR), 15-0 technical fall (5:29)
165 - Manny Ramirez (NYU) pinned Nick Tommas (CWR) at 0:37
174 - John Messinger (NYU) def. Nick Lees (CWR), 16-6 major decision
184 - Cito Balsells (CWR) won via forfeit
197 - Gavin Dersh-Fisher (CWR) def. Mark Papish (NYU), 4-3 decision
285 - Brian McNamara (CWR) def. Santino Pelusi (NYU), 4-0 decision

U. of Chicago 36, Case Western Reserve 11
Highlighting the second match of the day for the Spartans was a victory by technical fall from sophomore Connor Gordon in the 157-pound match.  Gordon defeated Chicago's Justin Klein 17-0, jumping out to a 6-0 lead after the first period following a near fall.  A second near fall in the second period boosted Gordon's lead to 13-0, and he clinched the match at the 5:00 mark with his third near fall later in the period.  The victory added five points to the Spartans' team total, while McNamara added another six with his win by forfeit in the 285-pound bout.

Match Results:
125 - Devan Richter (UC) def. Matt Moy (CWR), 10-3 decision
133 - Louis Demarco (UC) pinned Luke DiMuzio (CWR) at 1:05
141 - Mason Williams (UC) pinned Connor Howlin (CWR) at 2:32
149 - Luke Iida (UC) won via forfeit
157 - Connor Gordon (CWR) def. Justin Klein (UC), 17-0 technical fall (5:00)
165 - Nicholas DiNapoli (UC) def. Nick Tommas (CWR), 8-5 decision
174 - Paul Papoutsis (UC) def. Nick Lees (CWR), 10-1 major decision
184 - Jason Lynch (UC) def. Garrett Ruderman (CWR), 16-0 technical fall (3:48)
197 - Ryan Walsh (UC) def. Gavin Dersh-Fisher (CWR), 10-3 decision
285 - Brian McNamara (CWR) won via forfeit

After a week off, the Spartans will return to action at the 2016 NCAA Division III Mideast Regionals, hosted by Lycoming College in Williamsport, Pennsylvania on Saturday, February 27th and Sunday, February 28th.