The No. 25 Crimson is set to open its home slate Saturday against Army (Gil Talbot).
The Story Line
The No. 25 Harvard wrestling team will host its first home dual meet of the season Saturday, Jan. 28 when the Army Black Knights visit the Malkin Athletic Center for a 2:30 p.m. showdown. Live stats will be available during the match by clicking here.
Rank and File
The Crimson, which entered the InterMat tournament strength rankings top 25 for the first time last week, has slipped one spot down to No. 25. Harvard is one of only four EIWA squads to be featured in the top 25, behind No. 4 Cornell, No. 12 American and No. 13 Lehigh.
Walter Peppelman has moved up the rankings to No. 4 at 157 lbs., marking the highest ranking of his career. Peppelman had spent the last month listed in the No. 5 spot and has been ranked in the top 10 all season long. The senior co-captain is 16-3 overall with a perfect 8-0 record in dual meets, and boasts 13 bonus point victories on the year, including eight pins.
149-pounder Corey Jantzen fell from seventh to eighth after suffering his second loss of the season to Cornell's Chris Villalonga, 1-0. Jantzen owns a 6-2 mark and has been ranked for three consecutive weeks after returning to the lineup from injury.
Steven Keith remains as the 13th-ranked grappler at 133 lbs. with a 22-6 overall record and a 6-1 mark in duals. Keith has been ranked as high as No. 9 this season, and spent a total of three weeks in the InterMat top 10.
No. 25 Harvard (4-4, 1-2 EIWA)
Army (5-5, 2-1 EIWA)
What a Start
Harvard went 3-1 to open the dual meet portion of its schedule, marking the team's best start to a season since going 5-1 in 1995-96. The Crimson defeated Rider, 22-15, before falling at No. 24 Rutgers, 33-12, and then posted victories at Millersville, 43-0, and Franklin & Marshall, 29-12.
Shut 'Em Down
The Crimson posted a shutout at Millersville, dominating the match to the tune of 43-0 victory. This was Harvard's first shutout since defeating Boston College 31-0 on Feb. 9, 2002 at the MAC, while the team's 43 points scored were the most since a 50-0 win at home over Columbia on Feb. 9, 2001.
Twice As Nice
Harvard earned EIWA Wrestler of the Week honors in back-to-back weeks in the form of Corey Jantzen (Jan. 9) and Walter Peppelman (Jan. 16). Jantzen garnered his second career wrestler of the week accolade after going 4-0 in his return to the Crimson lineup, including a 7-4 tiebreakers decision over then unbeaten and third-ranked Mario Mason of Rutgers. Peppelman went 3-0 at the Lone Star Duals to earn the award for the first time in his career with a pair of pins and a 2-0 decision over Oklahoma's Matt Lester, currently ranked No. 15.
Climbing the Charts
Senior co-captain Walter Peppelman currently ranks fourth in Harvard history with 24 career pins, and is one shy of tying Joey Killar '00 for third place. His 79 career wins, meanwhile, put him seven short of entering the school's all-time top 10.
On the Podium
The Crimson competed in four tournaments to being the year and put a total of 15 grapplers on the podium. Six Crimson placed at the Binghamton Open, led by Walter Peppelman and Steven Keith who each took third. Peppelman earned the first tournament title of his career as seven Harvard wrestlers placed at the Keystone Classic, while both Keith (3rd) and freshman James Fox (7th) stood atop the podium at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. Keith also took eighth at the Midlands Championships to lead a contingent of four Crimson who competed in the tournament.