No. #14 Rutgers Finds Groove in 30-9 Win at Indiana


Logo Rutgers Scarlett Knights

Thumbnail Photo is Courtesy of Rutgers Athletics

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – No. 14 Rutgers wrestling returned to form Friday night at University Gym, where the Scarlet Knights took eight of 10 bouts and four by bonus points in a 30-9 win over Indiana.

Rutgers (14-5, 4-4) began and ended the day with major decisions, and got a six-point boost on a first period fall from No. 13 Billy Smith (Wantage, N.J.) at heavyweight. The dual win snapped a two-match Rutgers losing skid.

“We were excited to get on the road and get back to our winning ways,” said head coach Scott Goodale. “Any win in the Big Ten is a good win. Now we’re moving on to Sunday.”

The dual started at 165 pounds, where No. 8 Anthony Perrotti (Roseland, N.J.) shut out Bryce Martin, 10-0. Perrotti improves to 18-3 on the season and 7-1 in Big Ten duals.

Indiana’s (6-6, 3-9) No. 11 Nate Jackson eked out a win against Phillip Bakuckas (Hammonton, N.J.), 6-5, at 174 pounds after a thrilling third period. Bakuckas lifted Jackson to a single leg and converted the takedown going out of bounds with 20 seconds remaining. The two points tied the match, 5-5, but Jackson escaped with one tick left on the clock.

A match later Nicholas Gravina (Allendale, N.J.) swung three team points Rutgers’ way with a gutsy 4-3 win against Matt Irick. Gravina is now 17-6 overall.

The most thrilling win of the night for Rutgers came at 197 pounds. Hayden Hrymack (Point Pleasant, N.J.) faced a 4-1 deficit as the third period began, but the RU veteran got a two-point turn, pressured the full two minutes, and was rewarded a stall point from Jake Masengale as time expired.

With the score tied, 4-4, Hrymack (14-9) got to a single and tripped Masengale to the mat for the 6-4 sudden victory win.

“It was important. Winning the third period, doing it on top, turning people – that was the difference,” Goodale said. “He rode and then he gutted it out in overtime, where he felt it. When you win those tight matches in overtime like that, that means you’re in great shape, you’re in condition, you feel it, and there’s confidence there. Hopefully he carries that into Sunday.”

Smith (21-6) inched closer to the century mark for his career with a fall in 2:03 against Fletcher Miller. The High Point HS product now owns 95 wins in a Rutgers singlet with plenty more to wrestle for.

RU’s only other loss of the night came a match later at the hands of No. 19 125-poounder Elijah Oliver. Oliver pinned Josh Patrick (Rector, Pa.) in 2:56 to reverse the six points from a match prior and make the dual, 16-9.

But Scarlet Knights quickly shut the door on a Hoosier comeback, taking four-straight to close it out.

No. 19 Anthony Giraldo (Guttenberg, N.J.) scored a takedown late to close out a 12-3 major decision and jump to 15-10. Nicholas Ottaviano (Marlboro, N.J.) wrestled in place of No. 5 Anthony Ashnault (South Plainfield, N.J.) at 141 pounds and scored his first-career Big Ten win, 8-3. The dual match was just his second this season.

“When you try to get kids matches and rest your starters you want guys to step in and perform well, and he did that,” Goodale said. “Good for him. He’s been in there battling every day in the practice room taking a lot of lumps. For him to get a Big Ten win, great for Nick Ottaviano.”

Following a 6-2 decision at 149 pounds from Tyson Dippery (Harrisburg, Pa.), No. 12 Richie Lewis (Toms River, N.J.) stayed hot with a 13-4 major decision against Jake Danishek. Lewis is the third Scarlet Knight after Ashnault and Smith to reach 20 wins this season and is 20-3 overall.

Rutgers wraps up its Big Ten schedule Sunday at noon against No. 23 Purdue (8-6, 3-5). The Scarlet Knights make their first appearance on Big Ten Network this season and can finish above .500 in conference with a win.

No. 14 Rutgers (14-5, 4-4) 30, Indiana (6-6, 3-6) 9
Dual started at 165 pounds
Location: University Gym (Bloomington, Ind.)
165: No. 8/5/4 Anthony Perrotti (RU) major dec. over Bryce Martin (IU), 10-0; Rutgers leads, 4-0
174: No. 11/11/14 Nate Jackson dec. over Phillip Bakuckas (RU), 6-5; Rutgers leads, 4-3
184: No. 20/19/20 Nicholas Gravina (RU) dec. over Matt Irick (IU), 4-3; Rutgers leads, 7-3
197: Hayden Hrymack (RU) dec. over Jake Masengale (IU), 6-4 (SV); Rutgers leads, 10-3
285: No. 13/14/12 Billy Smith (RU) wins by fall over Fletcher Miller (IU), 2:03; Rutgers leads, 16-3
125: No. 19/20/NR Elijah Oliver (IU) wins by fall over Josh Patrick (RU), 2:56; Rutgers leads, 16-9
133: No. 19/18/NR Anthony Giraldo (RU) major dec. over Alonzo Shepherd (IU), 12-3; Rutgers leads, 20-9
141: Nicholas Ottaviano (RU) dec. over Tommy Cash (IU), 8-3; Rutgers leads, 23-9
149: Tyson Dippery (RU) dec. over Trevor Moody (IU), 6-2; Rutgers leads, 26-9
157: No. 12/10/9 Richie Lewis (RU) major dec. over Jake Danishek (IU), 13-4; Rutgers wins, 30-9
Rankings (-/-/-): InterMat / FloWrestling/The Open Mat
NR denotes not ranked

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