Rutgers travels back on road to face Hofstra
The Rutgers wrestling team travels back to New York state this weekend for a dual meet against Hofstra.
The No. 23 Scarlet Knights (4-1) will be looking to bounce back from their first loss of the season last Saturday when they split the Journeymen Duals in Troy, N.Y.
The match against the Pride will be Rutgers' last match before Thanksgiving break as the Knights are looking for their fifth victory of the season.
On the same week that Rutgers women’s basketball head coach C. Vivian Stringer earned her 1,000th career win, head coach Scott Goodale will be looking to tally a historic win total of his own. He is two wins shy of surpassing former head coach John Sacchi’s program record 167 wins.
“I haven’t really thought about it honestly," Goodale said. "We need to get back on the winning side of things and that’s really my focus and beating Hofstra is really, really important."
Goodale can tie that career mark this weekend against Hofstra. A win would put him just one away from the program's record, which can be achieved when the Knights take on Rider on Dec. 16.
No. 2 graduate student 149-pounder Anthony Ashnault can inch closer to securing career win No. 100 and can pick up his 97th win against the Pride. Already with five wins on the season, he has 96 career wins.
Goodale believes that while Ashnault's milestone is noteworthy and something he would like to see, it doesn’t take priority over keeping him healthy for the tournament later this year.
“We have talked about it, I would like to see him get it, I think he deserves to get it. But we won’t do anything to endanger Anthony," Goodale said. "He’s thought about it, it’s something he wants to do and it's maybe one of the reasons he’ll continue to wrestle.”
The team has seen some some surprise performers from other parts of the lineup this season.
Sophomore 125-pounder Shane Metzler has taken No. 2 junior 133-pounder Nick Suriano's spot in the 125 weight class this year, since Suriano moved up to 133 pounds. Metzler has seemingly solidified the starting spot as he has wrestled every 125-pound match for the team so far. He is 3-2 this season with two major decisions.
He credits a lot of his success this season to the guidance and advice of some of the upperclassmen. Metzler mentions Suriano and senior 184-pounder Jordan Pagano, who have given him advice as he has assumed the 125-pound start.
“The biggest thing that (Suriano) told me is that you have to go out there and just focus on yourself, don’t think about what’s going on. Just have an empty mind and just trust your training,” Metzler said. “A big guy for me is Jordan Pagano. He gives me a lot of advice on just handling my weight or just handling the stresses of being a college kid and also a D1 athlete.”
Another young wrestler that has started every match for Rutgers is freshman 165-pounder Stephan Glasgow. Glasgow got off to a perfect 4-0 record in his first year as a Knight before suffering his first defeat last week against Utah Valley’s Demetrius Romero.
Glasgow will likely face Hofstra junior Ricky Stamm in this Saturday’s match, as the midweight freshman will look to get to 5-1 on the season.
“I’ve seen a few of his matches but I’m just gonna focus on wrestling my match," Glasgow said. "I feel that if I wrestle my match I should be able to pull out a win."
Two Rutgers wrestlers that will be looking to make a turnaround on Saturday are graduate student 157-pounder John van Brill and his younger brother, sophomore 141-pounder Mike van Brill. The two went a combined 0-4 last weekend.
John van Brill came into the season as a national championship contender, but claims that the pressure that has come with those expectations have affected his performance. His priority this past week has been adjusting his mentality. He has also had to balance that with giving guidance to his younger brother in the midst of his struggles as well.
"Nobody puts more pressure on me than me," John van Brill said. "Not my coaches, not (my) parents."
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