At this point in their season, the Drexel University men’s wrestling team has been unable to regain the positive momentum they enjoyed at the start. They are currently on a five-match losing streak and hold a 4-9 record across all competitions.
The Dragons competed twice during the week, first against Binghamton University Feb. 10 and then played hosts to California Baptist University Feb. 16 at the Daskalakis Athletic Center. Drexel fell in both dual meets: 20-21 to Binghamton and 16-19 to Cal Baptist.
During the Binghamton match, the Dragons were able to go 5-5 in their matches, putting together one of their better overall team performance in a dual meet throughout the whole season. The match began with the 141-pounders going up against each other, as junior Nick Widmann shared the mat with Binghamton junior Anthony Sparacio. Widmann would drop the opener 14-4 to give Binghamton a four-point lead.
Luckily for Drexel, they would go on to pick up wins at the next three weight classes. Redshirt sophomore Parker Kropman began the win streak at 149 pounds with a 7-2 decision over Binghamton redshirt junior Frankie Garcia. Soon after, sophomore Evan Barczak successfully earned a shutout against Binghamton freshman Christopher Barker at 157 pounds, while the No. 15 nationally ranked 165-pounder junior Ebed Jarrell secured the first pin of the night for the Dragons. The victory was Jarrell’s 10th win and eighth pin of the season. Due to the surge of offense by the Dragons, Drexel regained the lead by eight points.
Drexel would not hold onto their newly found lead, as sophomore Trevor Elfvin and freshman Anthony Walters would each take a loss in their respective weight classes of 174 and 184 pounds.
As they’ve had to do all too often this season, the Drexel heavyweights took to the mats to help the Dragons lessen the point gap between their opponents. While redshirt seniors Stephen Loiseau and Joey Goodhart usually wrestle at the tail end of dual meets, this time they had a chance to have any points scored make a difference in the outcome of the meet.
Loiseau made quick work of his opponent at 197 pounds, taking the technical fall nod over Binghamton redshirt sophomore Alex Melikian.
Joey Goodhart put the overall score at 20-12 with his win at heavyweight over Binghamton redshirt freshman Joe Doyle. The win kept Goodhart as the most winning grappler on the Drexel squad this season. The lightest weights closed out the meet with freshmen Antonio Mininno and redshirt Alex Salas competing at 125 and 133 pounds, respectively. Each would suffer a loss, with Salas’s defeat via pin giving Binghamton the match by just one point.
Drexel returned to Philadelphia for their third home match of the season against Cal Baptist Feb. 16.
Junior Owen Brooks had a start at 174 pounds where he took a majority decision loss to Cal Baptist junior Bryce Buckley, while Anthony Walters’ dropped contest at 184 pounds to Cal Baptist redshirt sophomore Garrett Strang gave the Lancers a 7-0 advantage.
Once again, Loiseau and Goodhart had early matches, with both putting on dominant performances at the heavier weights. Loiseau enjoyed his second technical fall win in as many matches while Goodheart took a decision to put Drexel back in the fray at 8-7.
Unfortunately for Drexel, the Dragons went winless in their next four, seeing the Lancers go up 19-8. The efforts of Barczak and Jarrell at 157 and 165 pounds, respectively, weren’t enough to completely lessen the point deficit, and Cal Baptist ended the day ensuring Drexel’s losing streak stays alive.
The Dragons’ next appearance will be a league contest at home against the Princeton University Tigers Feb. 22. The Tigers are currently 8-6 overall on the season on a two-game win streak. This match will be the annual Spirit Night at the DAC. Many of the other Drexel Division I athletic teams will be in attendance, and the athletic department awards prizes to the most spirited team as well as the team with the highest percentage of players at the match. This will be a great opportunity for the Dragons to face Princeton, a fellow Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association rival, before progressing on to the EIWA championships.