We have consolidated all of our University news sources into one location called BingUNews. Inside stories published through 2016 will remain available here. Stories published in 2017 and later will be found at BingUNews. Enjoy!
Justin Lister, seen here wrestling against an opponent from George Mason on Nov. 12, has moved from No. 11 to No. 6 in the latest Intermat national rankings.
Photo by Jonathan Cohen
Wrestling team enters national Top 25
November 16, 2011Tweet
Binghamton wrestling has two top-10 individuals and has cracked the nation’s top 25 for the first time in program history. In the latest Intermat rankings, senior 157-pound Justin Lister jumped up to No. 6 and junior 149-pound Donnie Vinson edged up to No. 7 after the opening week. The Bearcats also earned a spot in the team rankings, moving into the No. 25 spot. The Intermat team rankings project strength at the NCAA Championship.
Lister moved up from No. 11 after winning six of seven matches over the weekend. On Nov. 12, he notched a pin in 1:17 against Sacred Heart after he started the day with a 6-1 decision over an opponent from George Mason. At the Binghamton Open on Nov. 13, he scored a big win—a 6-5 decision over the nation’s fifth-ranked wrestler, Walter Peppelman of Harvard. Lister went 4-1 with three pins on the day. He trailed Peppelman 4-0 in the semifinals before rallying. His great run ended with a 6-2 loss to top-ranked Kyle Dake of Cornell in the championship match.
Lister, a 2010 All-American, has pinned four of his seven opponents to start the season.
“That was a big match for Justin,” head coach Pat Popolizio said of Lister’s victory over Peppelman, a reigning All-American. “After falling behind early, he opened up and was able to come back and ride him for the last 30 seconds to get the win. Justin was extremely disappointed in how his season ended last year (1-2 at the NCAAs) and he has shown a new level of excitement and confidence on the mat this year.”
Vinson, a two-time NCAA qualifier, moved up a notch from the preseason poll. He posted a pair of pins in the Nov. 12 duals before sitting out the Open. He ended his match with George Mason’s Mike Bakackas in 2:34 and then finished off Justin Belanger of Sacred Heart in 3:59.
“We expect big things from Donnie this season,” Popolizio said. “He will see a lot of great competition throughout the year and will be tested on and off. He has the ability to compete for an NCAA title and needs to keep going in the right direction.”
Four Bearcats made the finals at the Open and after a pair of lopsided dual victories to start the season, Binghamton jumped into the Intermat team rankings for the first time at No. 25 (17.5 points)—a nod to the team’s overall lineup strength. The Bearcats were placed ahead of CAA rival Hofstra, as well as Big Ten members Purdue, Indiana and Nebraska. Binghamton will wrestle four top-15 schools (Oklahoma State, Cornell, American, Oklahoma) when the duals portion of the schedule heats up in January.
“It’s a great stepping stone to be in the top 25,” Popolizio said. “But our goal is to be higher than that and actually accomplish that goal at the NCAA Championship. The rankings are great, but it’s where you finish at the end of March that counts.”