By Danny Lovi, Staff Writer
Despite controlling the match early, the Hofstra wrestling team could not sustain momentum, falling to Binghamton Sunday afternoon 24-12. The Pride was looking to recapture some steam after losing to third-ranked Cornell and ninth-ranked Pittsburgh last week, but could not capitalize on the strong start.
Junior Steve Bonanno, wrestling at 125 pounds, provided a strong start for Hofstra, beating Derek Steeley 10-5.
The lead was short-lived, as sophomore Jamie Franco, wrestling at 133 pounds, was upset by Binghamton's Patrick Hunter. Hofstra was able to regain the lead when sophomore Luke Vaith defeated Joe Bonaldi 6-1, but that would be the last time the Pride would be ahead.
Led by fourth-ranked Donnie Vinson, Binghamton was able to beat Hofstra on three straight decisions, making the deficit extremely hard to overcome.
"We knew coming in here, these guys would be tough," said Bonanno. "They extend points and you can't count them out."
"They got into the tough part of their lineup with Vinson, Lister and Kaylor," said head coach Rob Anspach. "We knew those guys were pretty good, but I don't think we wrestled very well. We gave up bonus points, and in a match when on paper it's supposed to be 5-5 or 6-4, you just can't give up bonus points."
Hofstra ended Binghamton's run when senior P.J. Gillespie, who was wrestling up a weight at 174, defeated Caleb Wallace 9-2.
Senior Ben Clymer then beat Nate Schiedel at 184 to bring Hofstra within three but the Pride lost the last two matches, with sophomore Tim Murphy falling to Cody Reed at 197, and junior Paul Snyder losing to Nick Gwiazdowski at 285.
Hofstra looked a little tentative on the mat, a pattern that has seemed to develop over the last three matches.
"We've been very defensive the last couple matches," said Anspach. "We have to get back to where we were at the beginning of the year, attacking and really going after it. If we do that, we're going to be ok."
"If you're wrestling defensive, the other guy has more of a chance," said Murphy. "If you concentrate on scoring points, the match usually goes in your favor."
Hofstra has only two matches left before the CAA championships, and is looking to get back to its winning ways, hitting the road to face Rider on Thursday and Columbia on Sunday.
This loss leaves the team with a bitter taste in its mouth, but Hofstra cannot focus on the negatives.
"You can sulk about it for a couple hours," said Bonanno. "But the next day you got to bounce back. We have to be ready to go at it, and fix what we did wrong."
"We'll be seeing a lot of the Binghamton guys again in the CAA tournament," said Murphy. "We have a lot to work on and a lot to look forward to."