Above: Mount St. Joseph’s Keegan Rill (top) needed just 43 seconds to deck Loyola’s Will Maigetter in their 220lbs. match to help the Gaels dominate the Dons, 75-3.

Gaels crush John Carroll and Loyola to continue mat dominance

by Billy Loverocket

The flu decimated the John Carroll and Loyola wrestling teams on Thursday afternoon at Loyola, but top-ranked Mount St. Joseph (according to BillyB’s Maryland State Rankings) was hot like a fever, rolling to two big wins. With wins over No. 2 McDonogh and No. 3 St. Paul’s already in pocket the Gaels clinched their third consecutive MIAA A Conference dual meet crown.

“I believe winning our third consecutive MIAA dual meet championship shows the strength of our program,” Mt. St. Joe Coach Harry Barnabae said. “It also exemplifies the commitment by our wrestlers, the coaching staff, and our administration to continue to improve every year.

“It was important for our team to finish strong and build momentum going into the final three weeks of the season. We are moving in the right direction as our ultimate goal is to repeat as MIAA tournament and MIS (Maryland Independent Schools) State Champions.”

Forfeits were a frequent occurrence on this day, but St. Joe’s depth allowed them to field a full squad despite a few flu cases of their own. The Gaels beat John Carroll, 72-6, in the middle match of the tri-meet, and in the finale, they defeated Loyola, 75-3.

Matches of note for the Gaels included freshman Brandon Stalnaker giving No. 10 Shawn Strand (Loyola) all he could handle in their 120lb showdown. The match went into overtime after a back and forth ride where Strand secured the takedown in the first overtime stanza for the 14-12 win.

No. 3 Connor Strong (132) squared off with two ranked opponents and wasted little time in either match, dropping John Carroll’s Matt Mitrega (No. 14 at 126lbs) in 48 seconds, and No. 17 Ryan Thomas (Loyola) in 1:01.

St. Joe’s Nathan Porter (126) buries his chin in the chest of John Carroll’s Cole Jones to execute one of his two falls in the Gaels’ title clinching tri-meet sweep.

Nathan Porter (No. 5) picked up two falls of his own at 126lbs, with one being over the Patriots’ Cole Jones (No. 20 at 120lbs) in 50 seconds.

Seth Fillers (138, No. 2) earned a hard-fought win versus Loyola’s Josh Aybar (No. 14 at 145). Aybar showed the drop to 138 is a good fit for him, hanging tough with the physical Fillers before falling, 6-3.

No. 3 Keagan Rill (220) scored a 43 second pin of Will Maigetter (No. 21, Loyola). Heavyweight Isaac Righter (No. 2) flattened No. 11 Druw Van Der Werff (John Carroll) at the 1:00 mark of the first period. Righter pinned the Don’s Bennett Traurig in 31 seconds.
No. 2 Chris Barnabe (113) and No. 9 Chris Roybal (145) were double-deckers for St. Joe with both picking up two falls.

John Carroll’s Staki Gourgoulianis (106, No. 14) had to take a leave of absence from the mat, due to illness, during his bout with the Gaels’ Frank Antonelli (No. 16). Despite being ill, Gourgoulianis held on for a 7-6 victory.

Also, versus St. Joe, CJ Polesovsky (152, No. 23) edged back-up extraordinaire Ethan Stern, 5-3. Stern placed sixth at 145 at the always tough Mount Mat Madness tournament in December.

Loyola took out John Carroll in the opener, 48-28. While the Patriots lost on the scoreboard, they won on the mat, claiming victories in five of the six contested matches.

Amongst those wins were Mitrega decisioning Thomas at 132, 9-4, and Van Der Werff pinning Traurig with two seconds left in the first period.

Mount St. Joseph 72, John Carroll 6
(match started at 113)
113-Chris Barnabae (MSJ) pinned Julianne Moccia, :16
120-Brandon Stalnaker (MSJ) won by forfeit
126-Nathan Porter (MSJ) pinned Cole Jones, :50
132-Connor Strong (MSJ) pinned Matt Mitrega, :48
138-Seth Fillers (MSJ) won by forfeit
145-Chris Roybal (MSJ) pinned James Gillam, :17
152-CJ Polesovsky (JC) dec Ethan Stern, 5-3
160-Jonathan Short (MSJ) won by forfeit
170-Anthony Zancan (MSJ) won by forfeit
182-David Schultz (MSJ) won by forfeit
195-Austin Stith (MSJ) won by forfeit
220-Keagan Rill (MSJ) won by forfeit
285-Isaac Righter (MSJ) pinned Druw Van Der Werff, 1:00
106-Staki Gourgoulianis (JC) dec Frank Antonelli, 7-6

Mount St. Joseph 75, Loyola 3
(match started at 120)
120-Shawn Strand (Loy) dec Brandon Stalnaker, 14-12 OT
126-Nathan Porter (MSJ) pinned Ryan Eby, :12
132-Connor Strong (MSJ) pinned Ryan Thomas, 1:01
138-Seth Fillers (MSJ) dec Josh Aybar, 6-3
145-Chris Roybal (MSJ) pinned Jonathan Vendellis, 3:01
152-Ethan Stern (MSJ) pinned James Conway, 2:43
160-Jonathan Short (MSJ) pinned Ben Breschi, 1:22
170-Anthony Zancan (MSJ) won by forfeit
182-David Schultz (MSJ) won by forfeit
195-Paul Warner (MSJ) pinned Jake Wright, 2:55
220-Keagan Rill (MSJ) pinned Will Maigetter, :43
285-Isaac Righter (MSJ) pinned Bennett Traurig, :31
106-Frank Antonelli (MSJ) won by forfeit
113-Chris Barnabae (MSJ) pinned Brett Stoll, 1:01

Loyola 48, John Carroll 28
(match started at 106)
106-Julianne Moccia (JC) won by forfeit
113-Staki Gourgoulianis (JC) maj-dec Brett Stoll, 11-2
120-Shawn Strand (Loy) won by forfeit
126-Cole Jones (JC) dec Ryan Eby, 7-5
132-Matt Mitrega (JC) dec Ryan Thomas, 9-4
138-Josh Aybar (Loy) won by forfeit
145-Jonathan Vendellis (Loy) pinned James Gillam, :58
152-CJ Polesovsky (JC) pinned Ben Breschi, 1:02
160-Jacob Hester (Loy) won by forfeit
170-Taylor Randolph (Loy) won by forfeit
182-Jason Litvak (Loy) won by forfeit
195-Jake Wright (Loy) won by forfeit
220-Will Maigetter (Loy) won by forfeit
285-Druw Van Der Werff (JC) pinned Bennett Traurig, 1:58