KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Feb. 8, 2018) – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy wrestling team defeated visiting arch-rival and nationally-ranked Coast Guard, 19-16, on Thursday evening inside an electric Liebertz Gymnasium. The win improves the Mariners' record to 9-7 on the season, while the #22 Bears fall to 8-7 in defeat.
The Mariners also earn a point towards the 2017-18 Superintendents' Trophy standings, which Coast Guard currently leads, 5-3.
Prior to the match there were two ceremonies – the first honoring Second Company Officer LT John Jaeger for his contributions to the Regiment of Midshipmen at the Academy, and the second to honor the Mainers' two graduating seniors, Travis Ahrens (Mims, Fla.) and Daniel Viera (Bentonville, Ark.).
On the mat, Coast Guard raced out to a 13-0 lead through the first four weight classes, earning decisions at 125 and 141 and major decisions at 133 and 149.
Freshman Kieran Duggan (Woodbury, Conn.) got the Mariners on the board with a 4-3 decision at 157 before junior Erik Beshada (South River, N.J.) clinched a 16-6 major decision at 165. Sophomore Joshua Glantzman (Allenwood, N.J.) inched USMMA back to within just three points with a 4-2 decision at 174 that made the overall match score 13-10 in favor of the visitors.
After Coast Guard earned a decision at 184 to make it 16-10, junior Blake Bunce (Trophy Club, Texas) tied the match up with a pin at 197 in 3:49 and the Liebertz Gym was rocking going into the final deciding bout with the two teams knotted up at 16-16.
In the heavyweight bout, junior Victor Raigoza (Orland, Calif.) raced out to a 3-1 lead after the first two periods and allowed just an escape in the final period before holding on for a very narrow 3-2 decision to clinch the match and send the packed gymnasium back home or to their barracks happy.
The complete results from the match can been seen by following this link. A photo gallery that now features the pre-match ceremonies and two pictures towards the end of the match can be viewed at this link. (More photos will be added on Friday!)
Up next, the Mariners will travel to Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va., this Saturday, Feb. 10, for the 2018 Centennial Conference Championships. Action is set to get underway at 10 a.m. Live results and a live video feed of the championship meet will be available with links on the USMMA Wrestling Schedule Page.
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