Spartan wrestlers fight until the end in first home match

David Hoffman, Staff Reporter

The Spartan wrestlers came out fighting on Saturday, but ultimately fell short to Washington & Jefferson College in their home opener. The final score of 33-9 was deceiving; a great majority of the matches were closely contested, coming down to the wire. The decisions slowly piled up for Washington & Jefferson, eventually proving too much for the Case Western Reserve University Spartans to overcome.

It was evident from the beginning that the Spartans had indeed improved early in the season. Until Saturday, though, students didn’t have the opportunity to see that improvement themselves. The matches were pretty evenly played for the most part, displaying the inherent chess match that occurs between two wrestlers in the ring.

Freshman Luke Marcelli continued his phenomenal season, defeating Washington & Jefferson’s Timothy Keblesh 5-0 to improve his season record to 21-7. Three matches that day ended before they even began, with three wrestlers forfeiting their matches. Two of the three forfeited matches went against the Spartans.

Even when the odds were against them, the Spartans refused to go down quietly, resisting numerous takedown attempts by the opposition. One moment in particular captured the fighting spirit displayed by the wrestlers and how close they were to breaking through. Connor Medlang of CWRU was trailing Lucas Etzel of Washington by a count of 2-0. At the last moment, it appeared that Medlang had executed a takedown of Etzel to tie the match 2-2.

Unfortunately the referee ruled that time had expired just before the takedown occurred, negating the score and leaving Medlang on the short end by mere moments. The opposing wrestlers also resisted takedowns by the Spartans in turn. The match as a whole had the feel of a close contest, much closer than the final score would indicate.

The Spartans will look to rebound from this match next weekend when they hit the road once again to compete in the Pete Willson Invitational, which is being hosted by Wheaton College in Illinois.