GORHAM, Maine – Featuring four wins by fall, including a blistering 48-second pin from sophomore Peter Del Gallo (Gardiner, Maine) top open the match, the University of Southern Maine Huskies defeated the Bridgewater State University Bears 39-7 in a season-opening wrestling dual match Saturday afternoon at Hill Gymnasium.
Claiming the victory in its first match of the season, USM is now 1-0. After opening its season with a 20-19 win over New England College, Bridgewater State is now 1-1.
Led by Del Gallo's pin over Bridgewater State freshman Shawn Ferrell (Raynham, mass./Bridgewater-Raynham) in the 125-pound bout, Southern Maine won its first five matches to race out to a 24-0 lead. Rookie 133-pounder Caleb Austin (Rumford, Maine/Mountain Valley) was victorious in his first collegiate match pinning BSU junior Andrew Valdina (Dracut, Mass.) in 2:26, while junior Brendan Weir (Easthampton, Mass/Hampshire Regional) and sophomore Jared Garcia (Marshfield, Mass.) each won by decision at 149 and 157 pounds respectively.
BSU's Eric Kerr broke up USM's run with a major decision win, winning the bout 7-0 and earning a point for riding time at 165 pounds over sophomore Mike Macaluso (Scarborough, Maine/Cheverus) to make it 24-4 in favor of the Huskies, but USM sophomore Josh Smith (York, Maine) scored six points for the Huskies with a 4:06 pin over Bears' freshman Wilfredo David (Chicopee, Mass.). USM won the final two of the last three weight classes for the 39-7 final, including an impressive 54-second pin from freshman Brandon Cousino (North Ferrisburgh, Vermon/Vergennes Union) over BSU freshman Jerome Williams (Springfield, Mass.) at 197-pounds and a 5-3 decision by junior Mike Risti (Limerick, Maine/Massabesic).
Southern Maine returns to action on Saturday (10:00 a.m.) at the Roger Williams Invitational. The Bears will also be competing at the RWU Invitational on Saturday.