Cards 2nd After Day 1 of NEWA After Posting Seventh Winning Season in Last 10 Years


Led by its senior group that includes 125-pounder Dan Bloom '10 (photo insert upper right), 157-pounder Dave Bachy '10 and 165-pounder Josh Berkovic '10 (main photo), the 25th-ranked Cardinals ended the 2009-10 dual-meet season Sat., Feb. 6 with a pair of hard-earned victories over SUNY-Oneonta (18-16) and 26th-ranked Lycoming (19-15) while falling to 17th-ranked Williams, 27-9. As a result, Wesleyan finished the year with an 11-7 mark to go along with its recently earned third-place finish among the 15 teams during the NEWA Duals.

With four consecutive non-losing seasons and seven winning campaigns over the last 10 seasons, Wesleyan has a cumulative mark of 104-76-2 over the last decade.

Berkovic, who went 2-1 over the final three matches with his loss a 3-2 decision to the fifth-ranked wrestler nationally, had the team's best dual mark as he posted a 14-4 record. Right behind with 13-5 records are Bloom, who won all three of his matches Feb. 6, including a 6-4 overtime decision vs. Williams, and Bachy.

In the victory over Oneonta, Wesleyan captured five of the 10 bouts. A key pin by Maika Nagata '13 at 133 pounds provided Wesleyan with its victory margin as Oneonta managed four decisions and a major decision while the Cardinals had four decisions and a fall. Against Lycoming, Bloom was integral with a pin and Bachy had a major decision. Again each squad won five matches but the Cardinals' losses were all decisions.

After sending a contingent of 12 wrestlers to Springfield for the NEWA junior varsity championships Sun., Feb. 14, Wesleyan came away with a pair of first-place finishes - Jefferson Ajayi '13 at 184 among 10 competitors with a 3-0 mark and Kyle Roosa '13 at 174 among nine entrants, also with a 3-0 mark. Vinny deLalla '11 placed second of 18 at 149 with a 3-1 record while Sam Weiner '12 was second of six at 197 (1-1 record). Two other Cardinals placed fourth in their weight class - Gideon Levy '13 at 184 (1-2) and Abram Rowe '11 among nine grapplers at 125 (3-2).

The final team action is the annual NEWA Championships, this season hosted by W.N.E.C. Sat.-Sun., Feb. 20-21 with bids to the NCAA Division III Championships to be determined. After the first day of action, Wesleyan sits in second place with 74 points, 7.5 points behind leader Williams and 1.5 points ahead of third-place Johnson and Wales.

Three Cardinals are among the 20 wrestlers who have yet to lose in the tournament - Bloom at 125, Berkovic at 165 and Greg Hurd '10 at 174. Four others have clinched all-New England honors as a top-six placetakers as they remain alive on the consolation side. They include Howard Tobochnik '13 at 141, Bachy at 157, Zach Rolfe '10 at 184 and Luke Erickson '12 at 197. Finals results will be announced Sunday.