Over 2,300 people came to High Point Solutions Stadium to watch Rutgers and Maryland kick off the season with an outdoor match. This is the second year in a row that Rutgers has opened the season at High Point Stadium and had good weather, a small miracle in itself. Rutgers has received a lot of attention over the off-season with the addition of NJ native Nick Suriano and with Richie Lewis running through a though field at the recent U23 Championships. No one seems to be sure when returning AA Anthony Ashnault will return to the lineup but Eleazar Deluca filled in with an exciting style that thrilled the hometown fans.
You don’t get to see many leaf blowers at wrestling matches, they used it to clean the rubber pellets from the turf field before and during the match. An odd interruption. Maryland is a young building team that doesn’t look much better than last year and lacked discipline receiving more than 10 cautions about starting positions throughout the dual. Rutgers looks good in its opening action but in order to seriously climb the rankings and improve on last year’s NCAA finish they’ll need Ashnault back plus some improvement in the upper weights. Besides the obvious Rutgers has some under the radar exciting guys – MVB gave a ranked Diehl all he could handle in a very close loss following in his brother’s style. Deluca wasn’t afraid to look for big moves as did the tough as nails Gravina went big to come from behind as well. This should be an exciting team to watch this year and has a tough schedule that could bring out the best in them.
Interview Prematch Kerry McCoy
Post match Nick Suriano, Richie Lewis and Eleazar Deluca
125lbs: #3 Nick Suriano (RU) tech fall over Brandon Cray (UMD), 24-7; Rutgers up, 5-0
133lbs: #12 Scott DelVecchio (RU) dec. over Michael Doetsch (UMD), 11-5; Rutgers up, 8-0
141lbs: #13 Ryan Diehl (UMD) dec. over Michael Van Brill (RU), 10-9; Rutgers up, 8-3
149lbs: Eleazar Deluca (RU) dec. over Adam Whitesell (UMD), 10-4: Rutgers up, 11-3
157lbs: #7 Richie Lewis (RU) major dec. over Kyle Cochran (UMD), 13-4; Rutgers leads, 15-3
165lbs: #22 John Van Brill (RU) tech fall over Brendan Burnham (UMD), 15-0; Rutgers up, 20-3
174lbs: Josh Ugalde (UMD) dec. over #20 Jordan Pagano (RU), 8-3: Rutgers up, 20-6
184lbs: #9 Nicholas Gravina (RU) dec. over Jaron Smith (UMD), 10-4; Rutgers up, 23-6
197lbs: Kevin Mulligan (RU) major dec. over Nick Capello (UMD), 11-2; Rutgers up, 27-6
285lbs: #15 Yousiff Hemida (UMD) dec. over Razohnn Gross (RU), 7-1; Rutgers wins the dual, 27-9
Official Angel Rivera
All rankings are from True-Wrestling