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Wrestling suffers 36-3 loss to Columbia, drops to 3-9 on the season

Team unable to carry momentum from Friday’s 27-18 win over Long Island University

<p>Courtesy of Chip DeLorenzo via Brown Athletics</p><p></p><p>Columbia took eight out of nine total matches, with captain Hunter Adrian ’25 taking the Bears’ lone win.</p>

Courtesy of Chip DeLorenzo via Brown Athletics

Columbia took eight out of nine total matches, with captain Hunter Adrian ’25 taking the Bears’ lone win.

The wrestling team (3-9, 2-5 Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association) fell short against Columbia (5-7, 5-3 EIWA) with a score of 36-3 on its senior night Saturday. The loss came on the heels of a 27-18 win over Long Island University the day before.

Brown began the match trailing 6-0 after forfeiting at 125 lbs, before Hunter Adrian ’25 (133 lbs), the team’s captain, attempted to cut the lead against the Lions’ Angelo Rini. 

Entering the third period tied at two, Rini pulled off an escape and had a riding time advantage, giving him a de facto 4-2 lead. But in the closing seconds, Adrian was awarded two points after pulling off a takedown of his own, using his neck and shoulders to flip Rini over and take the match into overtime.

Adrian was the aggressor in sudden victory after spending much of regulation fending off Rini’s moves. Just 32 seconds into overtime, Adrian had Rini in a leg split and tossed him over on his side, pulling off the upset 6-4 victory against the higher-ranked Lions wrestler. 


“There's still time on the clock and the match is not over, so keep wrestling and keep pushing the pace and good things will happen,” Adrian said of his mindset during the comeback win.

Ian Oswalt ’25 (141 lbs) was up next, quickly wrestling his way to a 4-0 lead over Matt Kazimir with a forceful takedown in each of the first two periods. Kazimir responded with two escapes and a timely takedown with 39 seconds remaining in the third period, which pushed Oswalt’s riding time below one minute and forced the second overtime in as many matches. In overtime, Kazimir lunged for Oswalt’s right leg, folding Oswalt over and onto his knees for the takedown and securing his own surprise victory.

Columbia carried its momentum into the next match, with Brunonian Ricky Cabanillas ’23 (149 lbs) unable to outwrestle Danny Fongaro in a 5-2 loss.

“I knew he was good on his feet and liked to control his hands, so I was waiting for him to step and got a good takedown on him,” Ricky Cabanillas said. “He kept coming after me, and maybe I wasn't ready for that … but he timed my footstep and he was able to take me down.”

The Lions controlled the remaining matches, stringing together victory after victory to complete the day. Columbia took eight out of nine total matches, with Adrian’s victory the Bears’ lone win.

“They just beat us in positions that we needed to win,” Assistant Coach TJ Dudley said. “Their guys that were losing found a way to come from behind, and we needed to close out matches a little tighter.”

Despite the loss, Dudley said there were many positives to take away from the evening, adding that “the scoreboard isn’t reflective of what happened every match” because each contest was close.

“These are guys that are ranked in the top 20 in some of these weight classes, and our guys were beating them at one point or another,” Dudley said. “It shows us where we are, which is leaps and miles and bounds further than we have been in the past.”

That night, the team celebrated its seniors — Darby Diedrich ’23, Samuel Lynch ’23, Thomas Mukai ’23, Aaron Wolk ’23 and brothers Ricky and Nicky Cabanillas ’23 — in their last match at home. Each senior was given a plaque, announced to the fans in attendance at the Pizzitola Sports Center and recognized for their contributions to the team.

Ricky Cabanillas said his senior night experience was “pretty good,” and that he enjoyed having his family in attendance to cheer him on.


“It's a bit of a bittersweet moment,” Ricky Cabanillas said. “I've done this for 15 years and it's going to come to an end one day. So thinking about that, (I’m) just giving it all I have, trying to be the best leader (and) best athlete I can.”

The team will now shift focus to its upcoming match against Harvard in Cambridge this Friday. 

According to Adrian, the players will “clear our heads, come in on Monday, and just keep working on where we went wrong.”

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