January 30, 2023

On Sunday, the Rutgers wrestling team returns to New Jersey from its West Coast road trip to compete in the Garden State Grapple. After defeating Stanford 20-15 and have strong Individual performances at the Roadrunner Open will see the Scarlet Knights (3-1, 0-0) try to keep their hot streak alive as they take on UPenn and Drexel.

Rutgers meets No. 21 Quakers first at 2:00 p.m. (0-1, 0-0). This will be the Knights’ second-place clash this season as they look to achieve their first double win of the season. Rutgers will then look to beat the Dragons at 4:00 p.m. (0-0, 0-0).

Three knights are currently ranked top 15: No. 8 junior 141-pounder Sammy AlvarezNo. 12 freshman 184-pounder Brian Soldano and No. 14 PhD 133-pounder Jo Heilmann. All of these men are expected to wrestle in the upcoming tournament.

Alvarez and Junior 285-pounders Boone McDermott will try to remain undefeated this season. Alvarez is 4-0 early in the season and will look to continue that streak in both matchups. McDermott started the season on a perfect six-game winning streak and will look to add two more victories on Sunday.

Another Rutgers wrestler who could be in contention for an extension to his undefeated season is the 184-pounder sophomore John Poznanski. Poznanski is currently 5-0 but his start this weekend has not yet been confirmed.

In Sunday’s games, the Knights will look to extend their all-time lead against both programs. Rutgers leads his streak against UPenn 19-11-1 and also leads his streak against Drexel 15-11. This will be the Knights’ first matchup against the Quakers since 1996.

This tournament is part of Rutger’s unusually long streak. The program will not return to Piscataway for an event until January 20, 2023 when the team faces Michigan State. The January matchup will be the Knights’ first home game since the season opener.

This is the second annual Garden State Grapple and many other Big Ten teams will also compete. This tournament sees teams from the Big Ten compete against each other teams by the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association. Rutgers won both games of the inaugural tournament last year and will look to continue that streak on Sunday.

The Garden State Grapple begins at 2 p.m. at the Prudential Center in Newark. Both Knights duals will be streamed Big Ten Network Plus.


For more updates on the Rutgers wrestling team, click here @TargumSports on twitter.

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