WORCESTER -- Major decisions by Ben Zogby (Boston, MA) and Stephen Jendritz (Rockford, MI) and late wins from Brendan Marion (Norristown, PA) and Dan Wensley (Wakefield, MA) keyed WPI wrestling's 20-12 regular-season ending road victory on Saturday evening. The victory gives the Engineers an 18-4 dual meet record, the third most wins in a season in program history, and the most since the 1993-94 campaign which saw the Crimson and Gray win the New England championship.
With the match starting at 285 pounds, WPI found itself down 3-0 before back-to-back major decisions victories by Zogby and Jendritz. Zogby improved to 17-6 with a 14-3 win at 125 while Jendritz, ranked third in the most recent NEWA regional rankings, pitched an 8-0 shutout at 133 to move to 24-8 on the season.
Consecutive close wins at 141 and 149 pounds but the Pride up 9-8 at the midway point but WPI regained the advantage when second-ranked Tyler Marsh (Upper Black Eddy, PA) used an escape 26 seconds into the second period and then rode out his opponent in the third en route to a 2-0 victory at 157. It gave the sophomore his team-best 27th victory this winter (27-4). Marion then gave WPI a huge boast as he registered a takedown in the final 20 seconds of his tied bout at 165 and worked around a late escape to win 3-2. The top-ranked rookie is now 23-4 this season.
After a 5-4 Springfield win at 174 to close the team score to 14-12, Wensley was tied 2-2 with his third-ranked opponent at 184 pounds entering the third period but found himself down by over a minute of riding time. The sixth-ranked rode out his foe to erase the riding time deficit and then got two back points in the waning seconds to claim a critical 4-2 victory and improve to 23-7. 197-pounder Michael Curtis (Wells, ME) then made sure the Engineers went home winners with a hard-earned 4-3 triumph and move his record 23-8.
The Engineers now turns their attention to the postseason. Select members will participate in the NEWA Futures Tournament next Sunday at Roger Williams while WPI will host the NCAA Division III Northeast Regional Championships on Saturday, February 24th and Sunday March 3rd in the Sports & Recreation Center.