Photo of Shay Warren courtesy of Gil Talbot.
The Harvard wrestling team completes in three duals this weekend, two at home and one of the road. The Crimson faces Boston University Friday night in the Charles Cup and then returns to the MAC for the first time in four weeks to host Brown and Hofstra.
Keep up with the scores at home via the NWCA Live Scorebook. The links for all three dual meets are posted above.
Last Time Out
Harvard split its dual meets last Saturday, defeating Princeton, 21-15, and falling to No. 20 Penn, 40-7. The Crimson climbed out of a 15-3 hole against the Tigers to win the final six bouts and earn the team victory. Harvard won seven of the nine bouts contested. Cameron Croy and Walter Peppelman picked up two wins on the day after defeating their Penn opponents as well.
Scouting Boston University
The Terriers are in the midst of a six match win streak entering Friday's match. Boston University is 8-5-1 on the season with a sixth-place finish at the Keystone Classic.
Brock Mantella and Nestor Taffur lead the team with 21 wins apiece. Mantella is 21-10 at 184 pounds, while Taffur sports a 21-11 record at 149. Fred Santaite boasts a 13-4 record and is ranked 16th in the nation at 133 pounds.
The Terriers welcomes Brown Saturday.
Harvard leads the all-time series with The Terriers, 21-19-3 and has won 10 of the last 15 meetings. The two teams wrestle for the Charles Cup dedicated by BU professor John McGrath last year.
Brown enters the weekend with a 0-10 overall record and 0-2 conference mark. The Bears finished 12th at the Keystone Classic and 31st at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational earlier in the season.
The two teams have met 82 times on the mat with the Crimson holding a 52-28-2 advantage in the series. Brown has won five of the last seven meetings including three straight.
Hofstra enters the weekend with a 10-4-1 overall record after a 26-6 win over Lock Haven Wednesday night. The Pride finished fifth at the New York State Collegiate Championships and 11th at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational.
Lou Ruggirello leads the team in wins with 22 and has just three losses at 133 pounds. P.J. Gillespie is 20-6 at 165 pounds. Ruggirello is ranked fourth in the nation, Gillespie is 16th Ryan Patrovich is 18th at 174 and Steve Bonanno is 20th at 125.
The Pride leads the series 8-7-1 after the teams tied for the first time in last year's meeting in Hempstead.
Talk About Offense
Walter Peppelman leads the team in wins with 21 victories this season. Peppelman has scored bonus points in 13 of those 21 wins, including six wins by major decision, three by technical fall and four by fall.
Welcome Back Captain
Senior co-captain Andrew Knapp returned to the mat against Rutgers. It was his first competition since the EIWA Championships in March 2009.
Corey Jantzen and Walter Peppelman each have three and four wins by fall this season, respectively. Jantzen has 10 collegiate pins, while Peppelman has picked up 11 so far. Overall the Crimson has eight wins by fall on the year.
Walter Peppelman is ranked as high as eighth in the nation at 157 pounds.
The Crimson is doing its share of community service each year. During the month of January, Harvard wrestlers will volunteer with the Mission Hill After School Program to tutor residents of the Alice Taylor housing complex, a low income section of Roxbury. Earlier in the year, Jackson Salovarra '11 organized an event where Harvard went to church near campus to help weatherize the church rectory. The Crimson spent all day insulating and closing the house up for the winter which in turn will save the rectory thousands of dollars in the long run. These projects are just a small sample of how this program gives back to the community!
Pack the MAC
The Crimson closes out its dual portion of the season with four straight matches at the MAC. After this weekend the Crimson hosts Columbia Feb. 18 and Cornell Feb. 19.
On the Horizon
Harvard continues its homestand and wraps up dual action against Columbia and Cornell next weekend.