WAVERLY – Cornell juniors Ben Rosen and Carl Gaul recorded bookend wins over highly-rated individuals as the No. 28 Rams had their moments in a 34-13 dual loss to top-ranked and unbeaten Wartburg Thursday night in Levick Arena.
Cornell (5-3) collected three match victories against the two-time defending national champions. The 13 dual meet points are the most allowed by Wartburg (14-0) against a Division III foe this season.
Rosen gave the Rams an early lift with a 5-4 last-second comeback over third-ranked Gilberto Camacho in the opening bout at 125 pounds. Down by a point, Rosen scored a takedown to win it just before time expired in the third period. The upset moved Rosen's record to 19-12 on the season, and put Cornell ahead 3-0 in the dual.
The Knights went on to win the next seven matches – four of them pins – to take control of the meet with a 34-3 lead.
The Rams finished the dual strong, getting wins and bonus points from junior 197-pounder Alex Coolidge and Gaul at heavyweight in the final two matches. Second-ranked Coolidge (23-3) handled Steven Kleamenakis in a 14-5 major decision.
Gaul (20-10) provided the final highlight with a third-period pin over sixth-ranked Ryan Fank in 6:13. A late move gave Gaul his team-high 13th fall of the season, and 40th of his career.
"Those were two important wins for Rosen and Gaul," Cornell head coach Mike Duroe said. "It's important for seeding in the regional tournament and it gives both guys confidence at a critical time of the year."
In a rated matchup at 149, Cornell's fourth-ranked freshman Trevor Engle dropped a 13-9 decision to No. 2 Kodie Silvestri. Engle moved to 21-6 on the season.
Coming up – The Rams return to action Feb. 2 for Loras' Duhawk Open in Dubuque. Cornell's next dual meet is Feb. 6 at No. 26 University of Dubuque.
|Central Region Championships|
|NCAA Championships - Day 1|