NEW YORK – Six Army wrestlers won bouts to lead the Black Knights to a 19-15 victory over EIWA rival Columbia on Saturday evening at University Gymnasium.
Freshman Scott Filbert posted a major decision and five other Black Knights recorded wins by decision to lead Army (4-5, 2-1 EIWA) to its first dual match win since late November. Kevin Lester picked up a win by fall in the heavyweight bout to pace Columbia (3-2, 0-1 EIWA).
Filbert got Army off to a fast start by blanking Robert Dyar, 11-0, in the 125-pound matchup. The bonus-point victory gave the Black Knights an early 4-0 advantage.
Junior Jordan Thome followed Filbert’s dominating performance by securing a 6-2 verdict versus Kyle Gilchrist at 133 pounds, extending Army’s lead to 7-0.
Consecutive wins by Columbia trimmed Army’s advantage to 7-6, but senior Jimmy Rafferty and freshman Cole Gracey responded with victories to make it 13-6 in favor of the Black Knights with four bouts remaining. Rafferty scored a 4-1 decision versus Jake O’Hara in the 157-pound bout, while Gracey posted a 10-8 triumph opposite Eren Civan at 165 pounds.
Columbia’s Stephen West edged Ryan Tompkins, 3-2, in the 174-pound matchup to pull the Lions to within 13-9, but Army clinched the contest with wins in the next two bouts.
Lester rounded out the scoring by pinning Army freshman heavyweight Stephen Snyder in 49 seconds.
Army resumes its tournament slate next weekend (Jan. 21-22) when the Black Knights travel to Ithaca, N.Y., to compete at the 43rd annual New York State Championships.
Match Notes: Army’s all-time record versus Columbia improves to 51-7-1 … Jimmy Rafferty leads the Black Knights with 18 victories this season … he also tops the team with seven dual match wins … Rafferty has won six of his last seven bouts … Scott Filbert’s major decision was the first of his career … Derek Stanley picked up his first dual match win of the season.
Army 19, Columbia 15
125: Scott Filbert (A) maj. dec. Robert Dyar, 11-0
133: Jordan Thome (A) dec. Kyle Gilchrist, 6-2
141: Elijah Sullivan (C) dec. Casey Smith, 8-5
149: Steve Santos (C) dec. Ryan Bilyeu, 6-5
157: Jimmy Rafferty (A) dec. Jake O’Hara, 4-1
165: Cole Gracey (A) dec. Eren Civan, 10-8
174: Stephen West (C) dec. Ryan Tompkins, 3-2
184: Michael Gorman (A) dec. Shane Hughes, 14-11
197: Derek Stanley (A) dec. Nick Mills, 4-2
285: Kevin Lester (C) pinned Stephen Snyder, 0:49