Navy Wins All-Academy Title With Five Individual Champions

Feb. 5, 2005

Charleston, SC - The United States Naval Academy used five individual championships, four second place finishes and a third to run away with their second consecutive All-Academy Championship. The Midshipmen compiled 126.5 total points to win by a 36.5 point margin. The effort also earned their head coach Bruce Burnett Coach of the Year honors. The Air Force Academy finished second with 90 points while Army (76.5), The Citadel (59) and VMI (29) rounded out the top five.

The Championship rounds opened at 125 pounds with Air Force's Brandon Strong squaring off against Alex Usztics from the Naval Academy. Strong began the match with a single leg takedown 30 seconds into the first period and quickly turned Usztics over for a pin at 1:32. Army's Travis Featherstone defeated VMI's Jeremy Adams in the consolation finals with a 5-2 decision to take third place.

At 133 pounds, The Citadel's Ryan McClester faced Sam Gray from the Naval Academy. The pair was deadlocked at zero after one period and Gray took the down position to start the second period. McClester then took the early lead with two back points 30 seconds into the second, but Gray gained an escape point with 1:04 left in the period. The pair dueled for the remainder of the period with the score 2-1 in McClester's advantage. Gray quickly gained two back points to start the third, but McClester escaped with 1:30 left to even the score at three apiece. In the overtime period McClester used a single leg takedown with four seconds left to secure the sudden victory and the championship. In the consolation final Air Force's Matt Benza beat Army's Tony Severo with a 10-4 decision to earn third place.


The 141 pound final featured Navy's Nate Gulosh and Army's Patrick Simpson. The first period ended with no score and Gulosh took bottom to start the second. Gulosh gained a reversal with 30 seconds left in the second to get the match's first points and headed into the final frame with a 2-0 advantage. Simpson chose the bottom to start the third, but Gulosh retained control for the rest of the period and added a riding time point to win 3-0. Matt Crippes from Air Force pinned The Citadel's Michael Arias at 4:53 to win the consolation final.

Phillip Simpson from West Point took on Navy's Matt Gulosh in the 149 pound final. After a lengthy scramble, Simpson gained control and earned a takedown with 1:42 left in the first. After an out of bounds restart and two stalemates, the period ended with Simpson owning a 2-0 lead. In the second Simpson used a reversal to earn two more points and added three back points to take a 7-0 advantage. In the third Simpson took Gulosh down with 1:20 left earning two back points twice and rode Gulosh to the buzzer to earn the 14-0 major decision and the championship. VMI's Sam Alvarenga beat The Citadel's Levi Duyn with a 5-3 decision for third place.

The Citadel's Travis Piccard faced Navy's Pat Lukanich at 157 pounds and the pair took a 0-0 tie into the second. Lukanich escaped at 0:25 in the second to earn the match's first point and carried a 1-0 lead into the third. Piccard started on the bottom and tallied a tying escape point with 1:53 left in the match with regulation ending in a 1-1 tie. In the overtime period, Piccard scored a takedown with 45 seconds remaining for the 3-1 sudden victory and first place. In the consolation final VMI's Chris Hardy beat Army's Brandon Benson for third place with a 6-3 decision.

Beau Tresemer from the Air Force Academy and Army's Chad Marzec squared off at 165 pounds. Tresemer gained a takedown with 0:43 left in the first and fought off Marzec's escape attempt to take a 2-0 lead into the second. Tresemer started the second in the down position and escaped with 1:30 left in the period. They stayed neutral to start the third with Tresemer owning a 3-0 lead. Tresemer then added two takedown points with 0:45 left and Marzec escaped at 6:40 to earn his first and only point of the match. Tresemer added riding time and won the championship 6-1. Navy's Craig Dziewiatkowski pinned VMI's Tommy Cunningham at 1:30 in the consolation final to earn third place.

Navy's Matt Stolpinski and Jacob Lillich from the Air Force Academy faced off in the 174 pound championship match. Lillich got on the board first with a takedown 1:50 into the match and rode the clock to go into the second with a 2-0 lead. Lillich started the second period in the down position and remained there the entire period to carry his 2-0 lead into the third. Stolpinski started on bottom in the third and gained a reversal with 1:40 left in the match, tying it at 2-2. Lillich then escaped with 38 seconds remaining to go ahead 3-2, but Stolpinski earned the riding time point and the match went to overtime tied at three each. In the overtime period Stolpinski scored a takedown with eight seconds left to win the championship by a 5-3 sudden victory. The Consolation final was won by The Citadel's Dan Thompson who notched an 11-3 major decision over West Point's Scott Ferguson.

At 184 pounds, Air Force's Luke Lefever and Navy's Jon Kane matched up for the title. Kane earned the first points with a takedown 45 seconds into the match, but Lefever escaped with 1:51 left in the period giving Kane a 2-1 lead and the top position leading into the second period. Lefever escaped to earn one point and tie the match at two each early in the second Kane then used a takedown to jump ahead 4-2, but Lefever tied the match at four with a reversal before the period ended. The third period started neutral and Kane scored a takedown to take a 6-4 lead with 40 seconds left. Lefever escaped in the waning minutes, but it was not enough to overtake Kane, who added a riding time point to win the championship with a 7-5 decision. Army's Charles Martin won the consolation final with a 7-3 decision over the Coast Guard Academy's Josh Boyle.

The 197 pound final pitted Navy's Thayer Paxton against Army's Todd Wisman. Paxton, who earned a takedown 20 seconds into the match, added two back points to push his advantage 4-0. Wisman, who escaped with a minute left in the period, used a takedown with 35 seconds left to close to within on, 4-3. Paxton quickly escaped late and exited the first period with a 5-3 advantage. Paxton chose the bottom to start the second and escaped in the first ten seconds of the period to go up 6-3. He then added a takedown and two back points to lead 10-3 after two. In the third, Wisman got a takedown with 0:40 left and cut Paxton loose to trail 11-5. Paxton added a riding time point to win the championship 12-5. The Air Force Academy's Brendan McLean won a 2-1 tiebreak against Norwich's Silver Oghayore to claim third place.

The heavyweight final featured Navy's Tanner Garrett and The Citadel's Billy Linane. Garrett took a two point lead with a single leg takedown with 1:17 left in the first, but Linane escaped to put his first point on the board. The first period ended with Garrett leading 2-1. Garrett started the second on bottom and escaped 15 seconds into the period to go ahead 3-1. He then earned another takedown with 0:37 left in the second to improve his lead to four points, 5-1, and rode Linane to the end of the period. Linane started the third period on bottom down 5-1 and escaped to cut the score to 5-2. Garrett, who scored another takedown with 0:35 left, added a riding time point and won the heavyweight title with an 8-3 score. The Air Force's Trey McLean pinned the Coast Guard's Adam Kirking at 1:49 to win the consolation final.

149-pounder Phillip Simpson from the United States Military Academy was named the Tournament's Outstanding Wrestler. Simpson earned a pin in each of the first two rounds and won his weight class with a 14-0 major decision in the finals.

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Senior Ryan McClester took home his third All-Academy title with a win in the 133-pound weight class.
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