CASTLETON, Vt. – The Castleton University wrestling team begins the second half of the 2017-18 season Saturday, Jan. 6, traveling to Williamstown, Mass., for the Williams Open, hosted by Williams College at Lasell Gym starting at 10 a.m.
The Spartans closed out the 2017 portion of the schedule with a 23-11 victory over Southern Maine Dec. 16, earning victories in seven of the 10 matches. That win improved Castleton's dual match record to 7-4, which also includes victories over Sacred Heart and SUNY Cortland.
Although there will not be any team scoring Saturday, Castleton has already shown this year that it can compete with the top teams in tournament competition. The Spartans opened the 2017-18 campaign by finishing fifth at the Ithaca Invitational, and then they finished third at the Ted Reese Invitational one month ago.
Jesse Webb looks to continue his strong showing in tournaments this season, winning the heavyweight division at both the Ithaca Invitational and the Ted Reese Invitational. At 133 pounds, Nick Camacho finished fifth at the Ithaca Invitational and second at the Reese Invitational, while Max Tempel has earned two top-four finishes at 149 pounds.
Castleton sent seven wrestlers to the bracket finals at last year's Williams Open, including victories for Cameron Milliken at 157 pounds and Jared Costa at 165 pounds. Camacho dropped down to 125 pounds for the event and finished in second place, as did Mitchell LaFlam at 184 pounds and Nick Scott at 285 pounds.
As of press time, 12 teams will be represented at the Williams Open, including the host Ephs as well as Johnson & Wales, ranked second in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Division III Poll. The Spartans will also see regional rivals MIT, New England College, Plymouth State, Springfield College, and Western New England.
After Saturday's competition, Castleton heads to Collegeville, Pa., for the Will Abele Invitational, hosted by Ursinus College Saturday, Jan. 13.