After winning four out of the first six bouts in a dual meet against Bucknell, the Binghamton wrestling team could not overcome two forfeits, and the Bearcats were defeated 25-13 on Saturday. Despite the team loss, the bouts were competitive throughout the match.

“We have been talking about closing matches all week at practice,” said Binghamton head coach Kyle Borshoff. “When we are in the conference tournament, we are going to end up in close matches and it doesn’t matter if the opponent is ranked or unranked. We have to find a way to win.”

The teams started the day at 184 pounds, where No. 5 redshirt sophomore Lou DePrez had a dominating 18-3 tech fall, notching his 20th win of the season. At 197, nationally ranked Bucknell senior Drew Phipps soundly defeated freshman Sam DePrez 8-1 to cut the team score to 5-3 in favor of Binghamton. Redshirt sophomore Joe Doyle then secured a 4-2 win at the 285 weight class to put the Bearcats up 8-3.

Following that, the Bearcats dropped a tough decision at 125, with freshman Carson Sauriol falling 5-3 in the bout, almost completing a comeback.

“I thought our effort was a lot better [than last week],” Borshoff said. “It looked like we were fighting hard in most of the weight classes we contested and I think we closed out matches better as well.”

No. 10 redshirt sophomore Zack Trampe earned an 8-6 decision after coming back from a 5-4 deficit late in the third period to Bucknell freshman Darren Miller. Senior Anthony Sparacio followed that up with an even closer win, as he defeated junior David Campbell in sudden death overtime 6-4.

“Typically when you get to sudden death the first person to score wins, so the person that puts the most effort on the mat wins,” Borshoff said. “[Sparacio] dug deep and fired off a really nice leg attack and as soon as he got a good angle the other guy kind of gave up and let us get the takedown for the win.”

Those two close wins are something that the team hopes to use as a blueprint for the rest of the season.

“For both 133 and 141 we really had to dig deep and come out on top,” Borshoff said. “Last week in those close situations we lost every single match, and today we won both of those matches. And I think the two efforts today by Trampe and Sparacio are something that the other guys on the team need to follow.”

After the back-to-back close wins, the Bearcats had a 13-6 lead before Bucknell won at the 149 and 157 weight classes to even the score at 13. Binghamton then forfeited the 165 and 174 weight classes to give Bucknell the 25-13 victory. Binghamton’s 174 wrestler was disqualified from participation by the Bucknell medical staff, according to Borshoff.

The Bearcats will spend the next week preparing to wrestle against Cornell. The match will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 15 at the Friedman Wrestling Center in Ithaca, New York.