Sophomore Garrett Frey and freshmen Adam Krop and Ryan Callahan each placed at the 2010 Bearcat Open, held Sunday in Binghamton, N.Y.
Each of the three placed in the top six at their respective weight classes, though they were far from the only highlights for Princeton. The Tigers won significantly more matches than they did in the same tournament last season; see all brackets here.
"I feel good," head coach Chris Ayres said. "The best thing I can say is that the coaches stayed busy today. There were some really good wins, and some definite disappointments. We know what we have to work on now."
Frey, the 2010 EIWA runner-up at 125, won his first three matches in the same weight class, including two by fall. He lost a 3-1 decision to Old Dominion's Eric Dunnet in the semifinal, and he found himself wrestling for third against EIWA preseason favorite Frank Perrelli of Cornell; Perrelli lost to teammate Tyler Bisedha in overtime. Perrelli came into the tournament ranked 10th nationally, but the 17th-ranked Frey was in control of an 8-1 victory to clinch third.
"I talked to him about changing his approach after his last match," Ayres said. "I thought he was real tight against Dunnet. He wrestled an awesome match for third."
At 133, Krop won a major decision and an 11-4 decision before a narrow 3-2 loss to Columbia's Matt Bystol in the quarterfinal. Krop needed two wins to finish among the top six, and he had to work every second for the victories. He topped Old Dominion's Justin LaValle 6-5, and then defeated Binghamton's Anthony Jerome 3-2. His fourth straight one-point decision went against him, as Binghamton's Daniel Riggi placed fifth with a 3-2 win.
Callahan was impressive in the 174-pound weight class, where his only loss came to the top-ranked wrestler in the NCAA. He scored a first-period pin and a 15-4 major decision before facing Cornell's Mack Lewnes, the 2010 NCAA finalist, in the quarterfinal. The Big Red senior showed his talent with a technical fall, but Callahan showed plenty in his consolation run. He faced fellow freshman Tyler Beckwith, one of the nation's top recruits last year, and earned a 4-3 victory.
Ironically, Callahan faced a familiar rival for fifth place. He took on Canaan Bethea of Penn; Bethea, a graduate of Trenton High, was Callahan's opponent in the 2010 171-pound New Jersey state final. Callahan, who finished a perfect senior year with a win over Bethea, won a 3-1 overtime decision to take fifth.
For the day, Princeton picked up 30 individual victories, including 12 in the main draw. Other impressive performances included sophomore Luis Ramos at 141 (five wins, two in main draw) and classmate Zach Bintliff (three wins). Senior Travis Erdman, junior Daniel Kolodzik and freshman Brandon Rolnick also had main draw wins.