KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Dec. 9, 2018) – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy wrestling team hosted the 2018 Mariner Duals on Sunday at the Liebertz Gymnasium. The Mariners battled tough competition through three rounds of action, falling to two nationally-ranked teams and a Division II opponent.
The first match of the day was against #18 NYU, which the Violets won by the final of 33-15. Picking up victories for USMMA in the match were senior Daniel May (Stafford, Va.) with a 4-0 decision at 141, junior Kurtis Hahn (Winfield, Mo.) with a 2-1 decision at 174, classmate Joshua Glantzman (Allenwood, N.J.) with a 4-1 decision at 184 and senior Blake Bunce (Trophy Club, Texas), who won via a forfeit at the heavyweight class.
In the second match, a closely-contested 25-21 loss to D-II LIU Post, the Mariners came on strong in the higher weight classes, winning four of the final six bouts, but they ultimately fell just short of the Pioneers by four points.
Sophomore Alex Puglio (Myerstown, Pa.) picked up Merchant Marine's first win at 133 with a pin in exactly one minute. Classmate Kieran Duggan (Woodbury, Conn.) earned a 13-7 decision at 157, followed by senior Christian Willoughby's (Blountsville, Ala.) 8-4 decision at 165. Glantzman claimed another 4-1 decision at 184 and Bunce earned a pin in 2:10 at 285 to close out the match.
The final round featured the Mariners squaring off against the 15th-ranked team in the country, the TCNJ Lions. TCNJ won all but three bouts in the match, claiming a 34-12 victory over USMMA. Winning for the Mariners were Willoughby (4-2 decision at 165), Glantzman (4-2 decision at 184) and Bunce via another forfeit.
Four other Mariners won exhibition matches, as freshman Austin Vincent (Stockton, Ill.) claimed a 5-0 decision, senior Chad Puglio (Myerstown, Pa.) had an 8-2 decision, freshman Dominick Esposito (Marlboro, N.J.) won by a 6-0 decision and junior Collin Keil (Whitehouse, Ohio) triumphed with a 9-1 major decision.
Up next, the Mariners will host the #8 team in the country, Baldwin Wallace on Friday night, Dec. 14. Action is set to get underway at 7 p.m. at the Liebertz Gymnasium. A live video feed of the match will be available at this link.
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