In their first meet of the season, the Millersville wrestling team showed there is reason to believe that maybe this year will be better than their last.
Four Marauders placed at the East Stroudsburg Open last Saturday. This is quite an improvement after only one Marauder placed in the same event last season. Head Coach Todd Roberts felt the result will give them a boost going into their conference schedule.
“It gives them confidence in themselves to let them know they are on the right track,” Roberts said.
Senior Jarrett Hostetter grabbed a third-place finish in the 157-pound division. He won three major decisions, finishing with an 11-2 decision over Penn’s Gabe Burak in the third-place match.
Hostetter’s lone loss was a close one, a 3-2 decision against Rider’s Mike Kessler.
This was an opponent that Roberts thought Hostetter could beat nine times out of ten, but apparently Saturday was the lone exception.
Despite not finishing in first, Roberts thought Hostetter wrestled well and without too many mistakes.
Redshirt freshman Shane Smith showed what he is capable of in his first action at Millersville. He recorded three falls, including an 11-6 win in the fifth-place match.
Roberts thinks that Smith is someone to watch this season, particularly because of his ability to get pins.
This is important because the Marauders gain more points in team events for pins. The three he recorded Saturday was a team high.
Sophomore Sean Reed also won three matches en route to a sixth-place finish.
One of his wins came after he scored a fall only 26 seconds into the match.
However, he was unable to get past Penn’s Marty Borowsky in the fifth-place match of the 133-pound weight class.
Sophomore J.J. Lester (149 lbs) wrestled his way to the seventh-place match, which ended in a no contest. After opening with a loss against Kutztown’s Brett Martinez, Lester fought to four straight wins in the consolation bracket.
Roberts thought last weekend’s meet was a good opportunity for the Marauders to see where they are as a team.
This was their first meet of the season and they gained some good experience against some of the top competition on the East Coast.
Also, many of the people they faced had earlier starts to the season. Because of this, the Marauders’ fitness may not have been up to par with some of the other teams.
“We are still getting our legs underneath us and trying to get back in wrestling shape,” Roberts said.
Roberts thinks the Marauders still need to work out some things in order to get better. He stressed that they each have different individual things to improve on.
Millersville’s first conference matchup is against Wagner and Delaware State on Wednesday.
This is their first dual meet for the season at home in Pucillo Gymnasium at 4 p.m.
Not only is this a team event, but the Marauders’ win totals also go towards their individual ranks. Roberts is confident that they will have a good showing.
Millersville follows up that meet with the Mat Town Open at Lock Haven on Nov. 29.