Nov. 3, 2005
Providence, RI - Veteran leadership will be the Brown wrestling team's biggest asset going into the 2005-2006 season. With the loss of just two starters from last year's squad, which went 6-9 on the year, Head Coach Dave Amato's team will benefit from its ample experience. A total of eight starters return, including All-Ivy selections Dan Appello `06 at 133 lbs., Mike Savino `06 at 157 lbs., Mike Pedro `06 at 184 lbs. and Doran Heist `06 at 197 lbs. Also returning to the mat will be NCAA Qualifier Jeff Schell `08 at 125 lbs.
A total of 11 newcomers will join the team as well. All 11 members of the Class of 2009 were state qualifiers, including three which won state championship titles. Tom Fazio was the New Jersey state champion at 149 lbs, Matt Gevlinger was the Wisconsin state champion at 174 lbs and Zach Zdrada was the New Hampshire state champion at 285 lbs.
Schell had an outstanding first year, going 24-9 overall, and 12-3 in dual meets, including six wins over NCAA qualifiers. An NCAA qualifier himself, Schell wrestled his way to first place in the Bearcat Open, third place at the Keystone Classic, and fifth place at the EIWA Championships. With an impressive first season, Schell was named the Brown Freshman Male Athlete of the year and was runner up for Ivy League Rookie of the Year, and third for the EIWA Rookie of the year.
Adding depth to the 125 lbs. spot are junior Nate Myers along with freshmen Ross Baldwin and Chris Reilly. Myers, a two-time Rhode Island state champion, was impressive in the limited action he saw, posting a 4-2 record on the year, including a 2-0 mark in Ivy match-ups. Baldwin, who may also see time at 133 lbs., is a two-time state qualifier out of New Jersey while Reilly was a New York state qualifier and Section 8 County Champion in high school.
Appello will once again anchor the 133 lbs. position after earning Second Team All-Ivy honors last season. A four-year starter for the Bears, Appello posted a 14-12 record, including a 3-1 Ivy mark in 2004-05.
Also wrestling at 133 this season will be senior Greg Pace, who started for the Bears in 2003-04 at 125, posting an 11-14 record with a 2-2 showing at the EIWA Championships. A pair of talented freshmen have been added to the depth chart at 133 lbs. Travis Fischer comes to Brown from Elkhorn High School in Wisconsin where he placed fifth at the state tournament as a junior and senior. John Triggas also took a fifth place finish at the state tournament in California in addition to an eighth place finish at the high school national tournament.
With a year of collegiate experience under his belt, sophomore Mark Savino will return to his starting role at 141 lbs. In his rookie campaign, Savino went 8-19, including a big 13-1 victory over Princeton. Sophomore Ben Cannon will make the jump to 141 lbs. after competing at 125 lbs. last season. The Michigan State Champion in 2004, Cannon will compete for more action on the mat this season. Adding depth at 141 lbs. will be senior Mike Ashton, who posted a 2-4 record last season, before spending the second semester abroad.
Plagued by injuries the past two seasons, senior Shawn Cully will look to make a strong return in 2005-06 as the Bears' starter at 149 lbs. Joining the team in the second semester last year after a year and a half absence on the mat, Cully saw action in four matches. Senior Tim Smith saw ample time in 2004-05, adding key experience at the 149 lbs. position as well. The two seniors will help guide newcomers Tom Fazio and Mark Bloom as they begin their collegiate careers. Fazio comes to Brown after winning the New Jersey State Championship and placing seventh at the High School National Tournament while Bloom was the New York state runner-up as a senior,
Senior captain Mike Savino, older brother of 141 starter Mark, will return to his post at 157 lbs. After re-joining the team in the second semester, Savino posted an 8-9 record, including a 2-1 Ivy mark, which earned him an All-Ivy Honorable Mention. With numerous quality competitors at 149 lbs., Coach Amato anticipates certain individuals to make an attempt at competing in the 157 lbs. weight class, including Leonard Marandino, who is making the jump from the west coast where he was a two-time California state qualifier.
One of the few holes left vacant, junior captain Shawn Kitchner will step into the starting role at 165 lbs. this season. Going 7-6 in 2004-05, four of his seven victories came by fall. Freshman Chris Musser will serve as a valuable back-up to Kitchner as a two-time placewinner out of New York.
Junior Harrison Moskowitz, who has seen limited action in his first two seasons at Brown along with newcomers Matt Gevelinger and Branden Stearns, will all challenge for the starting position at 174 lbs. Gevelinger was the Wisconsin State Champion at 171 lbs. last year while Stearns is two-time state qualifier out of Pennsylvania
An All-Ivy Honorable Mention in 2004-05, Pedro returns for his final season at Brown, making the jump to 184 this season. Posting a 17-7 record, second best for the Bears, Pedro recorded a 2-1 mark in the Ivy League last season at 174 lbs. His 9-3 dual mark was tied for second on the team as well. Sophomore Matt Waller will look to garner more time on the mat this year after seeing limited action during his rookie campaign.
Heist, an NWCA All-Academic selection in 2005, will anchor the 197 lbs. position after earning Second Team All-Ivy honors last year at 184 lbs. Heist, who finished sixth at the EIWA Championships, went 2-1 in Ivy competition and 16-8 during the regular season. His 16 wins were second on the team, despite missing three weeks of action with an injury. His only loss in league competition was to EIWA Champion Tyler Baier of Cornell. Heist's 9-3 dual meet mark was tied for second on the team as well. Sophomore Leo Saniuk will back-up Heist as he posted a 7-18 mark during his rookie campaign. Adding additional depth will be junior Peter Gladish, who has battled injuries throughout his career at Brown.
Taking over the starting duties at heavyweight will be sophomore Levon Mock with freshman Zach Zdrada serving as a back-up. Mock was the Michigan State Champion in 2004 while Zdrada comes to Brown from New Hampshire, where he was a two-time state champion.