Franklin & Marshall’s wrestling team battled Lehigh’s No. 11 ranked Mountain Hawks in a 40-6 defeat in front of 1,300 fans at Grace Hall in Bethlehem, Saturday afternoon.
The EIWA dual dropped F&M’s dual-meet record to 2-5, while the Mountain Hawks won their third straight to improve to 10-3.
Lehigh freshmen sensation Scott Parker at 125 gave Lehigh an early 5-0 lead with the help of seven takedowns in a 20-4 opening bout technical fall.
In an early 9-0 hole following a major decision at 133,F&M’s Robert Ruiz faced off against Lehigh’s backup 141 lb. Dean Somers and managed to secure a cradle near the end of the first period to deliver six points to the Diplomats.
Trailing by just three points heading into 149, F&M suffered a major decision at 149, a pin at 157 and another major at 165 as the Mountain Hawks went ahead 23-6.
After Lehigh’s second pin of the contest at 174 and the its second technical fall at 184, F&M’s Charles Kerkesner, a 2x Florida state champion at 220 lbs, lost a hard fought 6-5 decision to Lehigh’s rugged John Bolich.
The last bout of the afternoon was dominated by Lehigh’s 285 lb. Doug Vollaro, 10-3. Vollaro is the #2 ranked big man in the EIWA.
Lehigh awaits the arrival of conference foe Cornell in the years most anticipated EIWA dual on Sunday. F&M has a matchup against Princeton at home next weekend.