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Goodale taps into fountain of youth in quad meet win

The Rutgers wrestling team started its season with three wins in its home quad meet over Centenary, LIU and Pitt-Johnstown. 

What was special about this meet than the previous ones of last season was the number of freshmen who made their first official starts on the varsity roster: nine. Of those nine wrestlers, eight earned their first wins in the new position.

Among the newcomers who racked up his first win on the Banks was freshman 133-pounder Sammy Alvarez. Alvarez, who was the third-best recruit in his weight class by FloWrestling out of St. Joseph’s Regional in Montvale, New Jersey, earned a technical fall over the Sharks’ Michael Blando to take an 18-2 win in his first-ever collegiate match.

Alvarez would see the mat again against the Mountain Cats. But, the freshman ultimately lost to Tyler Warner in a 9-4 decision. 

Another wrestler who shined in his debut was true freshman 165-pounder Jackson Turley. Although the Chester, Virginia, native only wrestled in one match, he made a statement in his 9-3 win over the Cyclones’ Jeremy Nurnberger. 

Turley, recruited as a 184-pounder, was ranked as the No. 3 184-pounder in the country by FloWrestling. He won the national title in his home state four times. During his junior season of competition, Turley was 33-1 at St. Christopher’s in Virginia.

Redshirt freshman 184-pounder Billy Janzer also made his debut. Janzer was the team’s redshirt wrestler of the year after compiling a 15-4 record.

Stepping into the starter’s role, Janzer swept the quad meet on Saturday. He won his first bout in a major decision fashion, a 16-6 victory over LIU’s Dan McClure.

Janzer’s second win was by forfeit, as his opponent from Centenary did not see the mat.

In his final bout of the day, the redshirt freshman handled Connor Craig from Pitt-Johnstown in a 5-0 win. 

Janzer is expected to see more time this season with fifth-year senior 184-pounder Willie Scott sidelined due to injury. There is no timetable for his return. 

But one thing’s for certain: The fountain of youth will be well represented in head coach Scott Goodale’s starting lineups.

“Some of the guys we lost to and beat were really, really talented. Especially in that UPJ match,” Goodale said. “It’s a lot of youth getting matches, getting quality experience with some stress and pressure to perform here at home.”

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

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