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Wrestling in First Through Round 4 in NEWA Championships

Eric Hamrick Middletown, Conn . -- February 25, 2012 -- The 11th-ranked Springfield College wrestling team finds itself in first place after several rounds of the first day of the New England Wrestling Association Championship at Wesleyan University. Nine of the 10 SC grapplers are still alive through Round 4, including unseeded junior Joe Ortiz, who upset the #1-seed right off the bat at 141 pounds.

Springfield is the defending champion and is currently ranked #2 in New England, but #11 in the country. The Pride captured team titles in this tournament nine times in a 10-year stretch from 1997 through 2006. It won the title again in 2011.

Through early evening of Day 1 of this two-day tournament, Springfield was doing very well. Springfield was leading with 93.5 points, while host Wesleyan was second with 88 points.

Rhode Island College was third with 59.5 points, followed by Johnson & Wales, ranked #1 in New England according to the final NEWA Coaches Poll with 58.5, Roger Williams (49), Coast Guard (39), Bridgewater State (37.5), Plymouth State (36) Southern Maine (26), Trinity and Williams (24.5 each), Western New England (22.5), WPI (22), and Norwich (1.5).

The only two SC wrestlers who had tasted defeat through Rounds 3-C and 4 were sophomore Tom Casper (Bergenfield, N.J.) at 125 pounds and senior John Gabordi (Ledyard, Conn.) at heavyweight. Casper then safely moved onto the consolation bracket, but Gabordi fell by the wayside.

The other eight wrestlers had all moved on. They were Ortiz (Paramus, N.J.) at 141, freshman Eric Hamrick (Collingswood, N.J.) at 149, senior Ryan McGilvray (Manalapan, N.J.) at 157, junior Derrick Longo (Ardsle, N.Y.) at 165, junior Mike Fish (Middletown, N.J.) at 174, junior Nicholas Camera (No. Massapequa, N.Y.) at 184, and junior Jeremy Burns (Hoosick Falls, N.Y.) at 197.

The tournament continues through the evening, and will underway once again Sunday morning at 10:00 am.

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Head Coach Jason Holder

Head Coach Jason Holder Jason Holder will enter his third season as head wrestling coach in 2013. Holder had a standout first season at the helm of the Pride, leading Springfield to the NEWA Duals Championship and taking three wrestlers to the NCAA Championships. Read more.

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