Posted: 01/14/2012 | Last updated: January 15, 2012 at 09:39 AM
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – No. 15 Lehigh snapped its two match losing streak, winning eight of ten bouts in a 28-6 win over EIWA rival Navy Saturday night inside Leeman-Turner Arena at Grace Hall. Senior Sean Bilodeau and sophomore Steve Dutton posted bonus point wins for the Mountain Hawks, while freshman Mason Beckman edged 17th-ranked Aaron Kalil in overtime to lead Lehigh’s effort.
The win ups the Mountain Hawks record to 6-4 overall and 2-1 against EIWA opponents. Navy is now 3-3 overall and 1-1 against EIWA foes.
“Coming into tonight both teams felt like they could win ten or lose ten,” said Lehigh head coach Pat Santoro. “There were a lot of tossup matches, but I’m really proud of the way we wrestled. We really fought hard tonight. A lot of guys had seven minutes of good hard wrestling.”
The dual began at 184 as junior Robert Hamlin met Luke Rebertus in a matchup of ranked wrestlers. Hamlin avenged a loss to Rebertus last year, scoring an early takedown and icing the match with a late takedown in a 6-2 victory.
“That was a huge win,” Santoro said of Hamlin’s tone-setter. “Rebertus is very solid. Really hard to score on. They’ll see each other again so we’ll just have to keep getting better, but Robert did a great job.
Seniors Kadeem Samuels and Zach Rey then followed with wins by decision to vault Lehigh to a 9-0 advantage. Samuels scored three double leg takedowns in the first period and went on to defeat Paul Rands 11-6 at 197 while Rey made a first period takedown stand in a 3-1 win over Dan Miller at heavyweight.
Navy picked up its first win of the night at 125 as Tyler Sackett downed junior Alex Abreu 7-5 setting up the bout between Beckman and Kalil at 133. Kalil scored first and led 2-1 after one period. A Beckman escape in the second evened things up at two. In the third period, Kalil escaped and then took a 5-2 lead with a takedown, but Beckman rallied to escape and was able to work his way into the tying takedown at the edge of the mat in the waning seconds of regulation. After a scoreless sudden victory period, Beckman rode out Kalil in the first 30 second tiebreaker, and was able to pop himself free for an escape in the final three seconds of the second 30 second period to win 6-5 and give Lehigh a 12-3 lead at intermission.
“Mason’s starting to find himself a little bit,” Santoro said. “He’s up a weight class, but this is a better weight class for him. He has energy now. This will do a lot for his confidence, but he has to continue to grow into this weight class, get more confident and wrestle harder.”
The second half of the dual began with Dutton earning a 12-3 major over Raymond Borja at 141. The win was keyed by a first period five point move as Dutton locked Borja up as if he was looking for a throw, but then dropped Borja right down to his back for a takedown and three point near fall.
Junior Shane Welsh extended Lehigh’s lead with a 9-5 decision over Peyton Walsh at 149, before Navy picked up its second and final win of the evening when Bobby Barnhisel won a 7-0 decision over senior Brian Tanen at 157.
At 165, Bilodeau added the exclamation point with a second period pin of Mike Brant. Bilodeau led 2-1 after one period and after Brant chose down in the second, Bilodeau used a half nelson-arm bar combination to work Brant over for the fall in 3:36, Bilodeau’s fourth pin of the season.
Freshman Nate Brown closed out the dual with a 4-3 decision over Oscar Huntley at 174. Brown scored a first period takedown and added escapes in the second and third periods.
The win brings Lehigh within two of Navy in the all-time series as the Mids now hold a 47-45 advantage. Lehigh has now won 14 of the last 16 duals against the Midshipmen.
The Mountain Hawks will return to the mats on Friday January 20 when they host EIWA rival Rutgers at Stabler Arena in the annual Billy Sheridan Memorial Dual. The match is slated for a 7 p.m. start and tickets can be purchased by calling 610-7LU-GAME or by logging on to Lehighsports.com.
Lehigh 28, Navy 6
184 – Robert Hamlin (Lehigh) dec. Luke Rebertus (Navy) 6-2
197 – Kadeem Samuels (Lehigh) dec. Paul Rands (Navy) 11-6
285 – Zach Rey (Lehigh) dec. Dan Miller (Navy) 3-1
125 – Tyler Sackett (Navy) dec. Alex Abreu (Lehigh) 7-5
133 – Mason Beckman (Lehigh) dec. Aaron Kalil (Navy) 6-5, t.b.
141 – Steve Dutton (Lehigh) major dec. Raymond Borja (Navy) 12-3
149 – Shane Welsh (Lehigh) dec. Peyton Walsh (Navy) 9-5
157 – Bobby Barnhisel (Navy) dec. Brian Tanen (Lehigh) 7-0
165 – Sean Bilodeau (Lehigh) Fall Mike Brant (Navy) 3:36
174 – Nate Brown (Lehigh) dec. Oscar Huntley (Navy) 4-3
Attendance – 1,433
Referee – Jeff Cook