Three American University wrestlers will head to the 2014 NCAA Tournament after earning automatic bids at the EIWA Championships on Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia, Pa.
No. 10 David Terao was the top finisher for the Eagles, finishing second at 125 lbs. after being edged 2-1 by No. 1 Nahshon Garrett of Cornell. No. 11 Daniel Mitchell placed third at 197 lbs. and Blake Herrin placed fourth at heavyweight to join Terao at the NCAA Tournament. Esteban Gomez-Rivera also reached the podium, placing seventh at 133 lbs.
"We've got three guys going to Nationals who can be on the podium, they can be All-Americans so we'll go home, we'll reboot and we'll get better for it when we go to Oklahoma City," said Head Coach Teague Moore. "I'm proud of everybody. I think as a team we performed very well and we're going to learn from this and get better."
Following the event, Mitchell was also awarded the Fletcher trophy for registering the most career EIWA points. He is the second American wrestler to receive the Fletcher trophy after Josh Glenn '08 was awarded the honor in 2008.
American finished tied for seventh in the team standings with Binghamton, finishing with 59.5 points. Cornell took home the team title with 165.5 points and was followed by Lehigh (101), Rutgers (91), Hofstra (81) and Columbia (69) rounding out the top-five.
Terao, Mitchell and Herrin will travel to Oklahoma City for the 2014 NCAA Championships on Mar. 20-22.
– 2nd-seed David Terao - 2nd Place
Terao advanced to the 125 lbs. championship with his sixth fall of the year and second of the tournament, pinning the third-seed Jamie Franco of Hofstra in 2:00. He faced the top-seed Nahshon Garrett of Cornell in the championship bout. Garrett had an escape in the second period and Terao was able to pick up one to knot the match up in the third, but Garrett had built up a riding time advantage and held on for the 2-1 decision.
Semifinals: Terao fall 3rd-seed Jamie Franco (Hofstra), 2:00
Finals: 1st-seed Nahshon Garrett (Cornell) dec. Terao, 2-1
133 lbs. – Esteban Gomez-Rivera – 7th Place
Gomez-Rivera was edged in a 6-5 decision by the seventh-seed Jeffrey Ott of Harvard. He trailed 3-0 at the start of the third period and was able to tie it up, but was unable to score a late takedown to overcome Ott's riding time advantage. Gomez-Rivera trailed 3-0 in his seventh place match with the third-seed Colton Rasche of Navy but received a stall point and had a quick escape to start the third. He scored a takedown with less than 20 seconds to go and rode Rasche out for the 4-3 decision to place seventh.
Consolation Quarterfinals: 7th-seed Jeffrey Ott (Harvard) dec.
7th Place Match: Gomez-Rivera dec. 3rd-seed Colton Rasche (Navy), 4-3
197 lbs. – 3rd-seed Daniel Mitchell – 3rd Place
After a scoreless first period, Mitchell posted a reversal to open the second period for the 2-0 advantage. The 10-seed Francis Mattiace of Penn tied it up with a pair of escapes but another takedown for Mitchell and his ride time advantage secured a 5-2 decision and bid to the 2014 NCAA Tournament. He then registered an 8-1 victory over the ninth-seed Bryce Barnes of Army in his consolation semifinals and finished third with a 15-1 major decision over the seventh-seed Paul Rands of Navy.
Consolation Quarterfinals: Mitchell dec. 10th-seed Francis
Mattiace (Pennsylvania), 5-2
Consolation Semifinals: Mitchell dec. 9th-seed Bryce Barnes (Army), 8-1
Consolation Finals: Mitchell major dec. 7th-seed Paul Rands (Navy), 15-1
HWT - 4th-seed Blake Herrin – 4th Place
Herrin was edged in a 2-1 decision by the top-seed Billy Smith of Rutgers. Smith had a pair of escapes in the second period and Herrin had an escape in the third but was unable to score the winning takedown in the closing minute. Herrin became American's third NCAA Tournament qualifier with a 6-0 decision over the third-seed Tyler Deuel of Binghamton. Herrin had a medical forfeit in the consolation finals to place fourth.
Semifinals: 1st-seed Billy Smith (Rutgers) dec. Herrin, 2-1
Consolation Semifinals: 3rd-seed Tyler Deuel (Binghamton), 6-0
Consolation Finals: 6th-seed Max Wessell (Lehigh) med. forfeit Herrin