The stage doesn’t get any bigger for the Cornell wrestlers this weekend. Four team members are in Iowa City for the national NCAA championships, where they will take on the toughest competition the country has to offer.
Senior tri-captains Corey Anderson and Leo Urbinelli accompanied classmate
Jim Stanec and sophomore Tom Waldron to Carver-Hawkeye Arena at the University of Iowa. 77 other schools were represented at the tournament.
The action began yesterday, with mixed results for Cornell’s troops. After one session of combat, Cornell is tied for 40th in the team standings with two points. Minnesota leads the way with 27, while host Iowa is in second place with 24.5.
Individually, Urbinelli is the only Red grappler to be seeded in his respective weight class. Wrestling at 157 pounds, the 11th-ranked Urbinelli defeated Ryan Smith of Ohio 7-5 in the first round of action. Urbinelli will have a tougher time in the second round, where he will square off against sixth-ranked Luke Becker of Minnesota.
Waldron was not as successful in his first match of the tournament. The sophomore took on Hofstra’s sixth-ranked Jason DeBruin in a play-in match in the 141 pound bracket, and was defeated 5-1.
Stanec (174 pounds) had his work cut out for him in his first round match, pitted against fourth-ranked Tyrone Lewis of Oklahoma. Lewis made easy work of Stanec, bouncing the Cornellian from the bracket by an 11-5 margin. Stanec’s shot at redemption will come in the consolation bracket, where he will first face the winner of a match yet to be contested.
Anderson, meanwhile, took on Indiana’s Ty Matthews in the opening round at 197 pounds. The unranked Matthews dismissed Anderson by a 7-2 decision. Anderson will move to the consolation bracket as well, where he will face Leonard Bridgeforth of Delaware State.
The three Red seniors in the tournament all reached nationals by virtue of their finalist status in the EIWA championships two weeks ago. Waldron joined them by receiving a wild-card bid into the tournament.
Archived article by Alex Fineman