Freilich, Tilbe, Perruccio and Hartzell Standout for Wrestling at NEWA Championships

Tyler Tilbe

Middletown, CT --- Four WPI wrestlers competed Sunday at the NEWA Championships at Wesleyan and in the process earned All-New England honors for the Engineers.  Alex Freilich (Worcester, MA) was third at 174 pounds, Tyler Tilbe (Woodbury, CT) placed fourth at 133, Mike Perruccio (Pelham, NH) finished fifth at 141 and Zach Hartzell (Gettysburg, PA) turning in a sixth place showing at 165.  

As a team, WPI tallied 43 points to place 11th, just a half point behind tenth-place Southern Maine and a single point back of ninth place Williams.  The four All-New England winners and 11th place team showing equals last year's performance as the best showing in both categories since 2005.  

Freilich and Perruccio earned All-New England honors for the second straight year as Perruccio repeated the fifth place showing he registered last year at 133 pounds and Freilich improved upon his sixth place finish at 174 in 2011. 

Freilich began the day in the winner's bracket final and was defeated 5-2 by the defending champion from Wesleyan before being eliminated by an identical score by his opponent from Johnson and Wales.  Tilbe stayed alive with a 7-5 victory over his opponent from Williams and then was defeated in his second match of the day by a wrestler from Weselyan. 

Perruccio dropped a tight 2-0 decision to his counterpart from Western New England before knocking off his opponent from Wesleyan 3-2.  Hartzell had a pair of high-scoring matches on Sunday, falling 12-10 in sudden victory 1 against his opponent from Johnson & Wales and being on the short end of a 13-11 decision against Wesleyan.

Prior to Sunday's final, WPI was well represented in a ceremony.  WPI Hall of Fame wrestler and former head coach Lance Baden was inducted into the NEWA Hall of Fame this weekend while athletic director Dana Harmon was honored as the Administrator of the Year.
Others competing for WPI at the NEWA championships this weekend included lone senior Stephen Poppa (Derby, CT) at 125, Andrew Tanner (Danville, NH) at 149, Matt Taber (Somerset, MA) at 157, Teddy Kostopoulos (Milford, CT) at 184, Bryan Barnash (Trumbull, CT) at 197 and Joseph Szerszunowicz (Milford, MA) at 285.

The tournament concludes the 50th year of wrestling as a varsity sport at WPI.   The Engineers are slated to open the 2012-2013 season at the Roger Williams Invitational in November. 


Team Points

1 Wesleyan 126
2 Springfield 125.5
3 JWU 87.5
4 Roger Williams 80
5 RIC 71
6 Bridgewater State 66
7 Coast Guard 63.5
8 Plymouth State 58
9 Williams 44
10 Southern Maine 43.5
11 WPI 43
12 Western New England 40.5
13 Trinity 33.5
14 Norwich 1.5