Santoro Leads Trio Of Top-4 Finishers At Wilkes Open; Midlands Opens Sunday
Senior Dan Santoro reached the finals at 197 and was one of three Princeton wrestlers to earn a top-four finish in his weight class during Saturday's Wilkes Open. The competition opened an important three-day stretch for the program, with much of the Tiger starting lineup slated to compete Sunday at the 51st Midlands Championships.
Santoro, whose experience includes multiple starts at the EIWA Championships, wrestled his way to the finals at 197, including an exciting 6-5 semifinal win over Brown's Augustus Marker. The final would be equally close, though Jared Haught of Virginia Tech edged Santoro for the title and the 3-2 win.
Freshmen Matt Gancayco and Troy Murtha both reached their respective consolation finals, and Murtha used his fourth first-period fall of the competition to claim third at 184. That victory came over Levi Veppert of Wilkes, with the fall coming only 55 seconds into the match. His lone loss came by a 3-1 score against the eventual weight class champion, Troy Hembury of Columbia.
Gancayco, who has started three of Princeton's four dual matches this season, made a strong push through the 157-pound weight class before falling in his consolation final. He won matches by fall, technical fall and decision before dropping an 8-5 decision in the consolation final.
In total, 11 Princeton wrestlers competed at the Wilkes Open; ten of their teammates are in Evanston, Ill., preparing for the 51st Midlands Championships.