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Rutgers Wrestling Opens 2012-13 Season at Hokie Open
  • Posted on November 02, 2012 6:06:25 PM
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  • Rutgers (0-0, 0-0 EIWA) at the 2012 HOKIE OPEN

    2012 Hokie Open
    Sunday, Nov. 4 • All Day
    Salem, Va. • Salem Civic Center

    Live Results: www.hokieopen.com


    Knight Notes

    • The Rutgers wrestling team kicks off the 2012-13 season at the Hokie Open on Sunday, Nov. 4, hosted by Virginia Tech inside Salem Civic Center in Salem, Va. In his sixth season leading the Scarlet Knights, head coach Scott Goodale returns seven dual starters and six NCAA qualifiers. Live results are set to be available at www.hokieopen.com.

    • The Scarlet Knights begin the season with four individuals in the national rankings: 149-pounder Mario Mason (Moorestown, N.J.), 157-pounder Scott Winston (Jackson, N.J.), 174-pounder Greg Zannetti (Edison, N.J.) and 184-pounder Dan Rinaldi (Lodi, N.J.).

    Rutgers Begins the 2012-13 Season

    • Seven dual starters return for head coach Scott Goodale’s 2012-13 squad, with six NCAA qualifiers returning to bolster the squad’s postseason experience. RU’s lineup additionally features eight seniors.

    • Four NCAA participants from last season’s tournament return, including senior 174-pounder Greg Zannetti (Edison, N.J.), who recorded a team-leading 31 wins in 2011-12. RU’s other returning 2012 national tournament participants are seniors: 149-pounder Mario Mason (Moorestown, N.J.), 157-pounder Scott Winston (Jackson, N.J.), 174-pounder Greg Zannetti (Edison, N.J.) and 184-pounder Dan Rinaldi (Lodi, N.J.). Senior 125-pounder Joseph Langel (Howell, N.J.) and senior 141-pounder Trevor Melde (Hewitt, N.J.) qualified for NCAA Championships earlier in their careers.

    • Rutgers compiled a 13-8 overall dual record (5-1 EIWA) in the 2011-12 season, qualifying five individual wrestlers for the 2012 NCAA Championships.

    Rutgers Hosting EIWA Championships for First Time in Program History

    • The Scarlet Knights’ postseason march will begin at home. Rutgers plays host to the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association (EIWA) Championships for the first time in program history from March 8-9 at the RAC. The 14-team event traditionally features some of the top wrestlers in the nation. Last season, 13 wrestlers from the conference earned NCAA All-America honors.

    • Season ticket orders can be made online at ScarletKnights.com or by calling the ticket office at 1-866-445-GORU (4678).

    Rutgers’ Ashnault Named Director of Wrestling Operations

    • Three-time NCAA qualifier and former Rutgers wrestling team captain Billy Ashnault was named Director of Wrestling Operations, it was announced Aug. 15 by sixth-year head coach Scott Goodale. Ashnault wrestled to an 86-61 record in his collegiate career, including two seasons of 25-plus wins as a Scarlet Knight.

    • Ashnault saved his best for last as a senior at the 2012 NCAA Championships in St. Louis, Mo., from March 15-17. The 141-pounder upset two seeded wrestlers and compiled a 3-2 record in his final national meet as a Rutgers wrestler, finishing one victory shy of securing All-America honors. Ashnault was dangerous in the consolation bracket, first edging No. 10 Jake Sueflohn of Nebraska by a score of 5-4 and then topping No. 12 Tyler Small of Kent State, 1-0.

    Goodale Adds NCAA Champion Molinaro to Rutgers Coaching Staff

    • Rutgers head wrestling coach Scott Goodale announced April 17 the addition of Frank Molinaro to his staff as assistant coach. A native of Barnegat, N.J., Molinaro starred at Penn State from 2008-12 as he earned All-America honors four-straight seasons and finished his career as the 2012 NCAA 149-pound champion.

    • Molinaro completed his senior campaign as one of the top competitors in the nation, compiling a perfect 33-0 record to take top billing in his weight class. The former Nittany Lion won his second-straight Big Ten Conference individual championship, also earning the tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler award in 2012. With an outstanding career record of 121-29, Molinaro left University Park, Pa., as PSU’s fifth four-time All-American.

    Rutgers Wrestling Unveils 2012-13 Schedule

    • The Rutgers wrestling team released its 2012-13 schedule on July 19, announcing a seven-dual home slate that additionally features the 2013 EIWA Championships from March 8-9 at the RAC. The newly minted schedule also includes the first collegiate wrestling event in the history of New York City’s Madison Square Garden, as RU takes part in the “Grapple at the Garden” duals along with nine other college wrestling programs.

    • Led by sixth-year head coach Scott Goodale, Rutgers’ mat squad has won 84 duals in his tenure, including a school-record 21 victories in 2010-11. Last year’s RU team was strong at home with five home dual wins, including three victories over EIWA opponents.

    • The Scarlet Knights’ array of home opponents for the upcoming season is highlighted by non-conference matches against perennial powers of the Big 12 Conference and Big Ten Conference. RU will take on Iowa State on Jan. 11, 2013 at 7 p.m., and host two-time defending NCAA champion Penn State on February 24, 2013 at 1 p.m. The Cyclones and Nittany Lions have combined to capture eight national team titles. Rutgers additionally plays host to EIWA foe Lehigh on Jan. 18 at 7 p.m.

    • Rutgers is set to face Nebraska and Tennessee-Chattanooga in the “Grapple at the Garden” event. The day of wrestling in the “Big Apple” starts with the Huskers at 10:30 a.m., with the matchup against the Mocs following at 12:30 p.m.

    • RU begins the season with three events in the month of November, starting with a season-opening trip to the Hokie Open on Nov. 4 in Blacksburg, Va. The Scarlet Knights face Clarion in College Ave. Gym on Nov. 11 at 1 p.m. to start the home schedule. Rutgers closes the month at the Northeast Duals in Albany, N.Y., on Nov. 24.

    • After wrestling at the Penn State Open in State College, Pa., on Dec. 2, Rutgers will host an in-state tri-meet with both Rider and conference opponent Princeton on Dec. 8 at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., respectively.

    • The Scarlet Knights take a trip to the West Coast with dual dates set for Cal State-Bakersfield (Jan. 3, 2013) and a quad-meet between Arizona State, Penn and host Stanford on Jan. 6, 2013. The month of January additionally features four road trips to Harvard and Brown (Jan. 20, 2013), West Virginia (Jan. 25, 2013) and Navy (Jan. 26, 2013).

    • RU hosts its second-to-last dual meet of the season against Bloomsburg on Feb. 8, 2013, with action starting in College Ave. Gym at 6:30 p.m. Goodale’s squad then faces Drexel and Old Dominion in consecutive road trips on Feb. 15, 2013 and Feb. 17, 2013, respectively.

    • After closing the season with the RU-PSU dual and the EIWA Championships, qualified Scarlet Knights will have the opportunity to take on the rest of the nation at the 2013 NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, from March 21-23.

    Goodale Announces 2012 Recruiting Class

    • Rutgers head wrestling coach Scott Goodale announced July 17 that 13 future student-athletes made the decision to wrestle “On the Banks” as new Scarlet Knights beginning in the fall of 2012. Seven members of the class were state finalists at their respective weights to finish their high school careers in 2012.

    • The latest class of Rutgers wrestlers has shown its talents on the national stage. Phil Bakuckas (Hammonton, N.J.) and Maverick Passaro (Eastport, N.Y.) recorded recent fourth-place finishes at the 2012 FloNationals in Philadelphia, Pa., from March 31-April 1. Terrance Jean-Jacques (Haverhill, Mass.) and Anthony Pafumi (West Orange, N.J.) attained multiple All-America honors at past NHSCA Nationals tournaments. Jean-Jacques was second in the country at heavyweight as a junior in 2011 and followed that performance by placing seventh in the division as a senior in 2012. Pafumi placed fifth in the nation at 171 pounds as a junior in 2011 after taking third at 160 pounds as a freshman and sophomore. Jean-Jacques placed second in the country at the National Preps Tournament, taking runner-up honors at heavyweight in 2011.

    Lex Knapp (Lacey Township, N.J.) and Jan Rosenberg (Rockaway, N.J.) also earned All-America status at the 2011 NHSCA Nationals tournament. Knapp placed eighth at 215 pounds, while Rosenberg took top honors at 103 pounds.

    • Rosenberg added freestyle and Greco-Roman All-America accolades to his record at the 2010 and 2011 Junior Nationals in Fargo, N.D. He placed fifth in freestyle and third in Greco-Roman at 98 pounds in 2010. Rosenberg followed that by placing third in freestyle and fourth in Greco-Roman at 105 pounds in 2011.

    • Goodale’s group features 10 student-athletes from New Jersey, two from New York, one from Massachusetts and one from Missouri. Sean McCabe (Connetquot, N.Y.) and Passaro won New York state titles at 120 pounds and 126 pounds, respectively. Morgan Fitzgerald (Kearney, Mo.), the grappler hailing from the “Show-Me” state, was one of three recruits in the RU class to cap his career with an individual state championship. Fitzgerald captured his crown at 170 pounds.

    • “Garden State” natives Anthony Giancola (Collingswood, N.J.), Hayden Hrymack (Lincroft, N.J.), Eric McMullen (North Bergen, N.J.), Jalen Ramos (Bayville, N.J.) and Ken Theobold (Toms River, N.J.) finish the group. McMullen and Theobold were state finalists at 195 pounds and 145 pounds, respectively, to close their high school careers.

    Melde Places Eighth at University Nationals

    • Senior 141-pounder Trevor Melde (Hewitt, N.J.) earned an eighth-place finish at the 2012 ASICS University Nationals held on the campus of the University of Arkon from May 31 -June 3. Melde wrestled at 66 kg (145.5 pounds) for the Scarlet Knight Wrestling Club, using three-straight wins to start the freestyle tournament to power his way into medal contention inside Akron’s Field House.

    • The Scarlet Knight opened with big wins over Michael DePalma (Edinboro) and Tre Miller-Scott (West Virgina). Melde pinned DePalma (6-0, 0:15) and scored a technical fall over Miller-Scott (6-0, 8-1). The two-time NCAA Championships qualifier for Rutgers continued with a 9-3, 3-0 decision of Isaiah Tatum (Grand View) to make the quarterfinals of his weight.

    • After dropping into the consolation round with a setback to eventual second-place finisher Nick Dardanes (Minnesota), Melde needed one more victory to secure a spot on his weight’s award stand. Melde scored the win with a 3-0, 3-2 decision of Luke Vaith (Hofstra). Cornell’s Chris Villalonga held off Melde in the seventh-place match by a score of 3-0, 2-1 to finish the tournament.

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