Cambridge, MA – Wrestling at home in their competition before the regular season, the Engineers hosted a tri-meet with Yale and the University of New Hampshire, beating Yale 46-7 and UNH 50-4. Undefeated on the day were wrestlers Drew Esquivel, Pepe Velarde, Trevor Romero, Jordan Wick, Frank Soucy, Joe Lowman, and Jonathon Brown. Matt Chun, Grant Genzman, and Raoul Khouri were 1-1 on the day, and Nina Manning was 0-1. Frank Soucy led the team with two pins on the day. The engineers return to action on February 27th for the NCWA NEC National Qualifier at UNH.

Amherst, MA – Bolstered by 17 bonus point victories, including 14 pins, the MIT Engineers finished fourth place at the Groundhog Invitational Tournament hosted by Amherst College. Matt Chun and Drew Esquivel finished in second place at the 125 and 133 pound weight classes respectively. Pepe Velarde was also in action at 133 pounds and finished in third place. Freshmen Jonathon Brown and Jordan Wick finished third and fourth at 197 and 147 pounds. Brown went 4-1 on the day, including 3 pins, and he now leads the team with 10 on the season. Wick finished 3-2 on the day and recorded two pins. Competing in the women’s division for the first time all season was Nina Manning who, despite finishing 0-2 on the day, wrestled very well. Also wrestling for the engineers but failing to place were Trevor Romero (1-2 at 149 lbs), Grant Genzman (2-2 at 165 lbs), Frank Soucy (1-2 at 174 lbs), and Joe Lowman (2-2 at 184 lbs). The engineers are back in action on February 13th when they host their first home meet since 2013.

Durham, NH – Wrestling this past weekend at the New England Championships hosted at the University of New Hampshire, the engineers had eight place-winners and one champion, junior captain Drew Esquivel at 133 lbs. The engineers had 13 bonus point victories, including seven pins and three technical falls. Placing alongside Esquivel were Matt Chun (champion at 125lbs), Nina Manning (fifth at 133lbs), Pepe Velarde (champion at 141lbs), Trevor Romero (third at 149lbs), Joe Lowman (third at 184lbs), Jonathon Brown (third at 197lbs), and Raoul Khouri (second at 235lbs). Also competing for the engineers was Frank Soucy at 174lbs. The engineers are back in action on February 7th for the Groundhog Invitational Tournament at Amherst College.

Plymouth, NH – Junior captain Joseph Lowman finished second place in the 184lbs weight class, losing in the finals to second ranked wrestler in the country from Williams. Freshmen Jonathan Brown and Jordan Wick placed third and fourth at 197lbs and 157lbs respectively, marking the first time either of them have placed in a tournament in their college careers. Also recording wins on the day were Drew Esquivel at 133lbs, Trevor Romero at 149lbs, and Frank Soucy at 184lbs. The Engineers return to action on January 31st for the New England Championships at the University of New Hampshire.

Springfield, MA – In their first competition in 2016, a tri-meet at Springfield Technical Community College, the Engineers defeated Bergen Community College and fell to Springfield Technical Community College. Making their season debuts for the Engineer’s were sophomores Trevor Romero or Raoul Khouri, both of whom went 1-1, including a pin by Khouri to secure a win against Bergon. Also recording wins on the day were Pepe Velarde, Nina Manning, Jordan Wick, Grant Genzman, Joe Lowman, and Jonathan Brown. The Engineers are back in action on Sunday the 17th at the Plymouth State tournament.

GORHAM, ME – In their final competition of the semester at the Ted Reese Invitational Tournament at the University of Southern Maine, captain Drew Esquivel lead the Engineer’s performance with a third place finish. Falling to the number one seed and eventual champion in his first place match, Drew won his next three matches, including a pin and technical fall. Grant Genzman also won three matches for MIT and recorded two falls. Making their collegiate debuts were freshman Frank Soucy at 184lbs and sophomore Nina Manning at 141lbs. Wrestling up a weight class, Manning went 0-2; Soucy recorded his first collegiate victory, pinning an opponent from Plymouth State in 1:42. Also in action were Matt Chun at 125, who despite dominate performances from neutral went 0-2, Pepe Velarde at 141 (1-2), Jonathan Brown at 197 (0-2), and captain Joe Lowman at 197 (2-2). The Engineers are back in action on January 9th with a quad at Springfield Technical Community College.

SPRINGFIELD, MA – Highlighted by the first wins of the season for Matt Chun, Drew Esquivel, Pepe Velarde, and Joe Lowman, the engineers showed a big improvement wrestling in the Doug Parker Invitational Tournament at Springfield college compared to one week before. Also recording a victory was Grant Genzman, who–like Chun, Esquivel, and Velarde–finished the day 1-2. Lowman finished 2-2 on the day and also recorded his first fall of the season. Jonathan Brown finished 0-2 on the day at 197lbs.

BRISTOL, RI – In the first tournament of the season and their collegiate debuts, freshmen Jonathan Brown (197lbs) and Jordan Wick (157lbs) recorded their first collegiate victories at the 2015 Roger Williams Invitational Tournament. Wick won his collegiate debut against Roger Williams, and Brown recorded a fall in the consolation bracket against Bridgewater State. Grant Genzman recorded his first victory of the season at 165lbs, finishing the day 1-2. Also competing but failing to place at this tough early season tournament were Matt Chun at 125lbs, Drew Esquivel at 133lbs, Pepe Velarde at 141lbs, and Joe Lowman at 197lbs.

CAMBRIDGE, MA – Anchored by five returning NCWA National Qualifiers, including Co-Captains Joe Lowman and Andrew Esquivel, the MIT engineers are positioned for a strong 2015-16 season. In addition to Lowman and Esquivel, the engineers return National Qualifiers Matt Chun, Pepe Velarde, and Grant Genzman. With these wrestlers looking to build on last year’s success and the addition of a strong class of freshmen wrestlers, the engineers are primed for successful season.

IMG_4518-sm“Combining returning wrestlers who have bought into the program and seen success with incoming freshmen who hungry to prove themselves and improve is a recipe for a great wrestling room, and we have already seen glimpses of this potential. We have seen their enthusiasm and desire to get better as wrestlers in open mats, and it has all the coaches excited for the season,” said head coach Tom Layte.

With open mats running twice a week, the incoming and returning wrestlers have been learning and refining their technique and preparing for the upcoming season. This wrestling is in addition to the off-season training–lifting, wrestling, and running–that our returning wrestlers have been doing since the end of last season. “Last season really showed the guys on the team how close they are to becoming All-Americans, and left them with a strong desire to get on the podium this year. They have been training hard all offseason with that goal in mind and are positioned to make it happen this season,” said assistant coach Sam Shames.

IMG_4795-smJoining the returning wrestlers is a strong class of freshmen, with wrestlers from states like Idaho, Florida, and California. These freshmen have been coming into open mats regularly and are getting accustomed to the intensity and pace of college wrestling. They are also learning new technique, developing relationships with their teammates and the coaching staff, and quickly becoming a part of the program.

With the combined momentum of strong offseason training and a freshmen class ready to make an immediate impact, the engineers team is ready for a strong 2015-16 season, beginning on November 14th at the Roger Williams Invitational Tournament.