PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Franklin & Marshall provided a strong performance against one of the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association's (EIWA) most-respected programs, falling short on the road to Penn by a hard-fought 31-16 score on Saturday evening.
The result dropped the Diplomats' record to 1-10, 0-7 EIWA on the year while the Quakers improved to 7-4, 4-2 EIWA.
Penn looked to be in control early on with a major in the first bout of the day at 165 pounds. However, Josh Young responded at 174 with a first-period takedown and a dominant third frame, to earn a 6-0 decision and deliver three points to F&M.
A fall at 184 pounds, followed by a Diplomats' forfeit at 197, placed the Quakers in the driver's seat with a 16-3 edge.
F&M continued to fight.
Antonio Pelusi, ranked No. 31 in Division I, stopped the bleeding at 285 pounds. A takedown in the first period put Pelusi ahead for good before the 2016 NCAA Qualifier sealed his match with an escape and a takedown in third for a 6-2 decision score.
Penn forfeited at 125 pounds to allow F&M to cut further into the score at 16-12 with just four bouts remaining. Dan Martoccio fought at 133 but fell by a narrow 6-0 decision before Brett Kulp delivered a clutch 14-4 major decision at 141 pounds to make it 19-16. Kulp rolled from the onset with a takedown and eight nearfall points in the opening stanza.
The Quakers did not allow F&M to get any closer, closing out the match with two consecutive pins at 149 and 157 pounds.
EIWA competition continues for the Diplomats on Friday when F&M welcomes Bucknell to the Mayser Center for a 7:30 p.m. showdown.
Penn 31, F&M 16
165: May Bethea (PENN) over Jacob Conners (F&M) (MD 17-5)
174: Josh Young (F&M) over Quinton Hiles (PENN) (Dec 6-0)
184: Joe Heyob (PENN) over Steven Mercadante (F&M) (Fall 4:23)
197: Frank Mattiace (PENN) over (F&M) (For.)
285: Antonio Pelusi (F&M) over Tyler Hall (PENN) (Dec 6-2)
125: Edgar Garcia (F&M) over (PENN) (For.)
133: Giovanni Ghione (PENN) over Dan Martoccio (F&M) (Dec 6-0)
141: Brett Kulp (F&M) over Tristin DeVincenzo (PENN) (MD 14-4)
149: Joe Oliva (PENN) over Sam Butler (F&M) (Fall 5:28)
157: Joseph Velliquette (PENN) over Emmett LiCastri (F&M) (Fall 2:59)