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University of Chicago Department of Athletics & Recreation

Fibranz Named UAA Rookie of the Year; UChicago Earns Runner-up League Honors

Cole Fibranz
Cole Fibranz

BROOKLYN, N.Y. Cole Fibranz earned the league Rookie of the Year honor to help lead the University of Chicago wrestling team to a runner-up finish at Saturday's University Athletic Association Championships, hosted by winner New York University.

The Maroons took down Case Western Reserve University easily in their first match, winning 32-18. UChicago captured six of 10 weight classes against the Spartans, including pins by Maguire Pecci (174), Dominick Reo (184), Fibranz (285) and Ryan Fleck (141).

Senior Steve Bonsall also won by major decision (19-10) at 157, as did junior Will Britain (10-2) at 165.

In the day's championship match, the Maroons ran into a red-hot Violet squad, ranked No. 9 in the national polls. UChicago fell by a score of 27-11, getting wins from sophomore Ben Sarasin, Fibranz and Fleck, as the first-year won by a technical fall score of 20-3.

All three were named to the all-UAA team, with the first-year Fibranz earning the Rookie of the Year hardware. Fibranz became the first Maroon to win the honor since Jason Crary in 2018.

"NYU is having a good year—they are ranked No. 9 in NCAA Division III and it looks like they deserve it," UChicago Head Coach Leo Kocher said. "I can't fault our team's effort – we had three team members who were not in optimal shape and had plenty of reason to pass on the competition because of illness or injury, but they pulled through and competed. We have to regroup and focus on qualifying some wrestlers for the NCAAs."

UChicago will return to action Friday and Saturday, Feb. 28-29 when the Maroons travel to the Upper Midwest NCAA Regional meet in Minneapolis, Minn.