August 20, 2019 | 81° F

Rutgers wins 9 out of 10 bouts to defeat Hofstra 40-3

Photo by Curstine Guevarra |

The Rutgers wrestling team went back on the road Friday night to tally its fifth win of the season against Hofstra. The No. 23 Scarlet Knights (5-1) dominated up and down the lineup against the Pride (0-1) and fell one match shy of a complete sweep with a final score of 40-3.

Head coach Scott Goodale tallied his 166th career win, which officially ties his predecessor John Sacchi for most wins by a head coach in the history of the program. Goodale will have a chance to take sole possession of the most career wins title when the team returns from Thanksgiving break. 

“I haven’t really thought about it much, I’m just happy to get the win tonight,” Goodale said. “I just feel very honored and very blessed that this administration gave me a shot 12 years ago. Myself and coach (John) Leonardis, they listened to a vision that we’re just trying to play out.”

Junior 141-pounder Peter Lipari reached a milestone of his own with his first dual meet win of the season. He earned a 6-2 decision over Hofstra’s Garrett Lambert. Lipari wrestled in place of sophomore 141-pounder Michael Van Brill, who struggled in last weekend's Journeymen Duals.

After a strong offseason, Lipari suffered an elbow injury just prior to Wrestle-Offs. Friday’s match marked his return to the mat, as he will look to challenge Van Brill for time in the 141 spot moving forward.

“It was just good to get out there with my team and get the win. I was a little rusty but at the end of the day its all about getting the win,” Lipari said. “I kind of wish I could get some more matches under my belt, but it is what it is. The next tournament is in Vegas, so now we get two weeks to prepare for that, and now it's time for our team to do big things out there.”

Against the Pride, who was competing in their first dual meet of the season, Rutgers got good performances from just about every wrestler Goodale started.

Sophomore 125-pounder Shane Metzler made his sixth appearance of the year, as he's started every match for the team. He earned his fourth win of the season against Hofstra’s Dylan Ryder in a 5-3 decision. Filling in for No. 2 junior 133-pounder Nick Suriano who was moved up to the 133 weight class, Metzler has played a meaningful role for the team this year. 

Suriano has continued to thrive in his new weight class as he stayed undefeated in Hemsptead, N.Y. He picked up his fourth pin of the year against the Pride's Trent Olson.

Alongside Suriano in the undefeated column is No. 2 graduate student 149-pounder Anthony Ashnault who earned a pin against Hofstra's Ryan Burkert. For Ashnault, the victory marked the 97th of his career, as he is now just three wins shy of joining the 100-win club.

“It feels pretty cool. I think it's a lot harder to accomplish in college than in high school," Ashnault said. "It’s a rare category of people and it's a pretty exciting accomplishment, so I’m looking forward to it."

While Ashnault and Suriano have had dominant bouts for the team so far, Goodale is also getting consistency out of many newer wrestlers in his lineup. Freshman 165-pounder Stephan Glasgow bounced back from his first loss of the season last week, with a 5-3 decision against the Pride's Ricky Stamm. 

Glasgow is now 5-1 in his first season on the Banks.

Sophomore 174-pounder Joseph Grello also has only one loss on the season, as he improved to 5-1 with his third pin of the season over Hofstra's Sage Heller. 

The Knights’ only loss of the day came toward the end of the meet in the 197 weight class. Freshman 197-pounder Max Wright suffered a 6-4 loss to Nezar Haddad to end the aspirations of a sweep. 

Junior heavyweight Christian Colucci closed the meet with a 3-1 win over Omar Haddad. Colucci has suffered some close losses so far this season, but is becoming Rutgers’ best option in the heavyweight spot. 

The Knights will have 14 days off before traveling to Las Vegas, Nev. for the Cliff Keen Invitational that will span from Nov. 30 through Dec. 1. 

“We wrestled well, we got to have a really good two weeks of training because we have this Vegas tournament coming up. We treat it as a mini national tournament, it’s a really, really good tournament," Goodale said. "We got better tonight and we wrestled for the most part with a little more energy and juice, and we closed out matches."

For updates on the Rutgers wrestling team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

Jackson Thompson

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