When you comply with EIWA wrestling, you observed one thing was lacking final yr. The league lacked the standard firepower that it produces yr in and yr out. The convention was based in 1904, making it the oldest within the nation. At 17 groups, it’s the largest convention based mostly on amount, after having solely 4 member colleges at its inception. Due to the wealthy custom of the convention, one would recommend it produces quite a few All-Individuals (AAs) yearly. And that assumption can be right, as there was a median of 10 AAs from the convention between 2010-2019. With the cancellation of the 2020 match, 21 AAs had been topped from the EIWA. Since these had been based mostly on rankings, I’ll ignore this quantity, as it’s definitely an outlier. Let me be clear about that final assertion, I definitely don’t low cost the person wrestlers who earned this standing. It’s a tremendous achievement, and anybody who wrestled at any degree in all probability is aware of how onerous that is to do. Clearly, they did earn it based mostly on the season’s outcomes. However I’m certain practically 100% of those guys would agree that it is “totally different” than truly standing on the rostrum after three days of battle. Because the outdated saying goes, “That is why they wrestle!”
This brings us to the 2021 season. The EIWA solely had 2 wrestlers on the rostrum in St Louis. Zach Hartman wrestled within the semifinals, finally shedding to the champion (Shane Griffith of Stanford) and putting sixth. The opposite placer was Lou Deprez of Binghamton, who positioned eighth after incomes the third seed to start the match. Why the massive drop within the variety of All-Individuals? The reply is straightforward, sadly. Seven colleges had been pressured to take a seat out your entire 2020-2021 season. This contains the 6 Ivy League Universities, plus Franklin and Marshall School. In case you are like me and never sensible sufficient to use to the Ivy League colleges with wrestling, I obtained you coated. They’re Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Harvard, Penn, and Princeton. Beneath is a listing of the wrestlers I am most excited to see, who had been unable to compete final season on account of their respective colleges cancelling the season.
Honorable Point out – Wil Gil (141, Franklin & Marshall)
Hey, what’s a “Prime 10 Listing” with out an honorable point out – proper? Though this can be thought of considerably of a homer-pick (because of the truth I’ve been a volunteer coach at this college the previous few seasons), I’m very excited to see Wil compete as a senior this yr. In 2019 he was the NCAA’s first alternate after putting fifth at EIWAs, and in 2020 missed out on a wild card to NCAA’s. This man has a number of the craziest matches and may wrestle with nearly anyone. He offers coaches coronary heart assaults. He took out EIWA prime seed Sal Profaci in time beyond regulation within the blood spherical on the convention championships in 2020. Wil put up 31 wins and had 10 losses in 2020. One other yr of coaching with Coach Tyson Dippery, Wil Gil is able to catch some consideration this yr. Plus, he will likely be enjoyable to observe!
#10 – Matt Kazimir (141, Columbia)
Outperforming his seed after going 26-9 throughout the yr (7-5 in opposition to EIWA competitors) is an indication Matt was peaking on the proper time on the finish of the 2020 season. Matt was the 2020 EIWA runner-up on the Yianni-less 141 lb weight class. Earlier than the cancellation of the Championships in Minneapolis, the Nationwide Qualifier was squared off to wrestle the fifth seed, Dom Demas of Oklahoma, in his opening spherical matchup. He was trying so as to add his identify to the countless record of NCAA All-Individuals from perennial Ohio powerhouse St Ed’s Excessive Faculty. When you’ve got the privilege of rolling with Senior Stage athletes like volunteer coach, Shelton Mack, day-after-day, you may solely get higher. Hold a watch out for Matt, together with these lightweights that Coach Tanelli is producing within the metropolis that by no means sleeps.
#9 – Michael Colaiocco (125, Penn)
The Blair Academy graduate was ranked within the prime 10 throughout the 2020 season. He even earned the eleventh seed on the NCAA Event after a disappointing 1-2 efficiency on the EIWA Championships. Everybody noticed how proficient he was throughout the yr. Going 24-7 as a freshman, whereas wrestling the kind of schedule that Penn has is nothing to gloss over. There have been questions swirling about how lengthy he can maintain that weight. Over the summer season, he wrestled at 63 kg. (138 .9 lbs.) at The Summit 2 Occasion, hosted by the Pennsylvania RTC. My solely query is, how strict are these weigh-ins on the exhibition occasions? Assuming he did make that weight with out a lot slicing, I’d count on to see him at 125 for not less than the subsequent yr.
#8 – Philip Conigliaro (Harvard, 165)
Philip was given the seventeenth seed on the 2020 NCAA Championships. After putting third at EIWAs two weeks prior, he was set as much as wrestle EIWA foe Zach Hartman of Bucknell. Hartman was victorious in time beyond regulation of their convention semifinal matchup. I noticed Phil wrestler in November of the 2019-2020 season and thought he was good. Then I noticed him wrestle at EIWAs and thought he was glorious. Persevering with that upward trajectory, he just lately positioned third at Senior Nationals on the 74 kg bracket (163.1 lbs) whereas knocking off guys like Branson Ashworth and Jacori Teemer. Conigliaro will climb the rankings subsequent yr.
#7 – Quincy Monday (157, Princeton)
Monday is without doubt one of the most enjoyable wrestlers within the convention and probably even the nation. His quick, highly effective blast doubles and his ferocious headlocks hold the gang’s eyes glued to his matches. His model of wrestling jogs my memory of the well-known Forrest Gump quote, “Watchin’ him wrestle is sort of a field of sweets, ya by no means know whatcha gonna get.” Anyway, Quincy was the EIWA runner-up, incomes him the fifth seed earlier than the match was cancelled. Throughout that yr, he defeated the 2021 NCAA runner-up, Jesse Dellavecchia of Rider. Even from a younger age, the son of an Olympic Gold medalist was destined for greatness. The sky is the restrict for Quincy.
#6 – Anthony Artalona (157, Penn)
Artalona, who missed the final half of the 2020 season on account of damage, moved as much as the 157 lb. weight class after being on the 149 lb. class the yr prior. That season, he was the EIWA champion. This earned him the thirteenth seed on the convention meet. He misplaced within the first spherical and battled again to in the end lose within the notorious blood spherical. It has been two full postseasons since we have seen Anthony within the EIWA. Incoming Penn RTC Athlete Jordan Burroughs (ever hear of him?) will assist convey Artalona to the subsequent degree earlier than his profession is finished at Penn. This makes it all of the extra thrilling to see him in November 2021 and past.
#5 – Yaraslau Slavikouski (285, Harvard)
Yara earned the tenth seed on the 2020 NCAA Championships. After the match’s cancellation, he was awarded “EIWA Freshman of the Yr” for his achievements throughout his rookie yr, together with second place on the EIWA Convention Event. Extra just lately, Yara has been busy on the worldwide scene, taking bronze on the Belarussian Senior Nationals this spring. His regular enchancment is inevitable because of the steady coaching below the skilled Harvard teaching workers. Assistant Coach Jimmy Sheptock was a two-time All-American wrestler at 184 lbs. for the College of Maryland. Finally, he coached one other two-time All-American, heavyweight Youssif Hemida. Slavikouski will likely be a prime EIWA competitor on the 285 lb weight class for the subsequent few years.
#4 – Ben Darmstadt (Cornell, 197)
You may’t discuss thrilling wrestling and never point out Ben Darmstadt. Within the 2019-2020 season, he recorded the second most falls within the nation on the D1 degree. His 14 pins got here in a complete mixed time of slightly below 24 minutes. Even with my restricted math abilities, I can let you know he places dudes away, and he does it rapidly. Darmstadt had a weird begin to the 2019-2020 season, as he reduce all the way in which right down to the 184 weight class to start out the yr. Rumor has it that he had a pleasant Thanksgiving meal or two, as a result of when he got here again, he was again as much as 197. After breezing by way of the convention bracket, he earned a 4 seed on the NCAA Event. Along with his lengthy, prolonged physique model, it truly is a disgrace the match was cancelled. He would have been a really formidable matchup for anybody within the bracket. If his layoff yr was spent within the weight room, including some bulk, he will likely be even scarier to wrestle.
#3 – Vito Arujau (125, Cornell)
The Lengthy Island native has not been in a postseason as a Cornell wrestler since March of 2019, when he positioned fourth on the NCAA Championships. Vito outperformed his eighth seed, solely shedding to top-seeded Sebastian Rivera twice. Utilizing his Olympic redshirt yr in 2020, Vito has slowly climbed his manner close to the highest of the U.S. freestyle chain. Final month, he completed because the runner-up on the Olympic Staff Trials at 57 kgs. That is no straightforward activity for a child who remains to be in school. Along with his lengthy record of accolades (in each freestyle and folkstyle), plus countless high quality exercise companions in Ithaca, count on Vito to battle it out for the EIWA crown within the years to come back with the subsequent man on the record.
#2 – Patrick Glory (125, Princeton)
Glory had a improbable, undefeated sophomore yr up till the non-existent NCAA Championships. He was awarded the Ivy League Wrestler of the Yr to conclude the 2020 season. The latest Princeton wrestler to win the award, gained it earlier than Pat was even born. He’s that kind of expertise for the Princeton staff. After successful all 24 matches on the yr, whereas claiming a Midlands and EIWA title, he was a Dan Hodge Award Finalist. Glory completed sixth as a freshman in 2019 to assert All-American honors. He can simply be a top-three man within the nation, however it’s a tall order to try to take out Spencer Lee of Iowa. Princeton is itching to compete once more, which is comprehensible. They’ve been on the rise for a number of years now. One would say that their prime “Glory” Days are simply starting…
#1 – Yianni Diakomihalis (141, Cornell)
That is the apparent reply. Everyone seems to be already placing him within the Hodge Trophy operating – the season remains to be six months out. Yianni was a previous finalist for the award after successful his second NCAA title in 2019. On prime of that, everyone knows the story of his unbelievable run as a freshman, successful the 141 lb. title on a torn ACL. You will by no means hear him brag about it, although, as a result of “Excuses are for wusses” – proper Spencer Lee? Extra impressively, Yianni at the moment holds a 47-match win streak on the NCAA degree. Diakomihalis additionally gained the 2019 Ivy League and EIWA Wrestler of the Yr awards. And if that is not sufficient, he was voted Excellent Wrestler on the EIWA Championships. He has an argument of being thought of probably the greatest pound-for-pound wrestlers on the earth already at a younger age, due to his win over the primary ranked wrestler on the earth throughout an exhibition freestyle match in the summertime of 2019. Due to this, many thought he was the favourite to signify the USA on the Olympics this coming summer season at 65 kgs. Sadly, that match didn’t go his manner. Yianni is staying constructive and specializing in the long run. That is what makes him particular. What else are you able to say about Yianni? He does a little bit little bit of every part and is so versatile together with his model of wrestling. He is like a Greek model of the Swiss military knife with regards to his wrestling talents.
Increase your hand in case you are excited in regards to the upcoming season. With the COVID-shortened season and Olympic redshirts now previously, the EIWA is poised to have a substantial uptick in All-Individuals. Sarcastically, the most recent member (Lengthy Island College) has not been within the convention lengthy sufficient to see it at full power. With their latest transition from the Division II degree and being within the coronary heart of New York state’s greatest wrestling, they’ve an ideal alternative to climb up the EIWA ladder in years to come back.
Lastly, as I discussed beforehand, Jordan Burroughs will likely be shifting to the Philadelphia space and start his coaching with the Pennsylvania RTC. You may solely think about the affect he may have on the Penn and Drexel applications, that are already on the rise. The development of these kind of applications solely makes the EIWA stronger sooner or later. It is a good time to be a fan of EIWA wrestling!