Feb. 1, 2014
NEW LONDON, Conn. - Eight members of the Army wrestling team placed in the top four of their respective brackets at the All-Academy Championships on Saturday at Coast Guard's Merriman Gym.
Army finished fourth in the eight-team field with 71 points, behind tournament champion Navy (108.5), The Citadel (92) and Air Force (83). Virginia Military Institute (VMI) placed fifth with 17.5 points, while the Merchant Marine Academy (16.5), Norwich (6.5) and Coast Guard (2) rounded out the field.
Freshman Samson Imonode (184 pounds) was the lone champion for the Black Knights, going 3-0 in the 184 pound field. Imonode began his run through the bracket by pinning Norwich's Nick Smith before posting a 5-3 sudden-victory decision over James Mannier of Navy. In the 184 final, Imonode slipped past Air Force's Devin Hightower for a 2-1 win.
Sophomores Bryce Barnes (197) and Brian Harvey (174) each went 2-1 to take second place in their respective brackets. Barnes earned a 12-3 major decision in his first bout, and won 6-3 in his second match before falling to Navy's Paul Rands, 4-1, in the championship match. Harvey collected a 9-3 win over Norwich's William Burns before getting past Air Force's Konner Witt, 3-2. Harvey was forced to take a medical forfeit in the 174 final and settle for second.
A trio of Black Knights earned third-place finishes including, seniors Paul Hancock (157) and Tyler Rauenzahn (141) and junior Chandler Smith (165). Hancock and Rauenzahn each collected a pair of major decisions en route to a 3-1 record on the day. Hancock defeated Air Force's Joshua Kreimier, 11-6, in the third place match at 157 pounds, while Rauenzahn took a 3-1 sudden-victory win over VMI's Emmitt Kelly. Smith pinned his opponent in the 165 opener, but fell to Navy's Peyton Walsh, who ranks 17th in Intermat's national poll, by a count of 2-1 in his next match. Smith triumphed in his next two matches to take third.
Freshmen Mark Marchetti (149) and Trevor Smith (285) both went 2-2 to finish fourth in their respective brackets. Marchetti's wins came by pin and major decision, while Smith collected one major decision and a 1-0 sudden-victory win.
Army will return home for the final time this season on Sunday, Feb. 9, when it hosts Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association (EIWA) rival Bucknell at 2 p.m. at Gillis Field House.