U SPORTS Reflections: Concordia’s Medals on the Mat

Montréal, QC- The Concordia University Stingers made their presence felt at the U SPORTS national wrestling championships at Brock University this spring. With 12 athletes earning a shot at national glory, and nine still in contention on Day 2, the Montréal school came home with seven national medals, including a team podium finish for the men. 

Wrestling- Making Their Mark on the National Mat

The Stingers weren’t far from sensational over the course of the 2019-2020 wrestling campaign. By the time the U SPORTS championships rolled around, 12 Stingers were set to take to the mat in a fight for national titles. 

In terms of the teams themselves, the men took the third overall spot with 45 points as the weekend wrapped. On the women’s side, Concordia finished sixth with 31 points, missing the podium by three. 

The men wound up with four individual medalists by the end of the meet; two gold and two bronze. The first came when Aaron Oszark beat Bobby Narwal, of the eventual champion Brock, in the 72kg third place matchup. The next weight class up was a golden one for Concordia as Guseyn Ruslanzada took down Ben Zahra out of McMaster. The 82kg bronze matchup saw another Concordia victor; this time it was Sam Barmish getting the best of Calgary’s Connor Pointen. The men’s 120kg finale also saw a Stinger take down a Badger with Aly Barghout claiming gold over Richard Deschatelets.

The women brought home a gold and a bronze of their own. Rookie Jayd Davis got the better of Guelph’s Hannah Little for the gold medal in the 55kg class. Amanda Savard won bronze over Western’s Paige Baynham in the 67kg fight. 

Both Jayd Davis and Guseyn Ruslanzada were named first-team all-Canadians. They also each took home a major award from nationals, Davis was named Female Rookie of the Year and Ruslanzada earned himself the title of Outstanding Wrestler on the men’s side. Overall, Concordia’s performance on the national stage bodes well for them continuing to improve and contend for more and more podium finishes.

The Stingers may not be known as wrestling superpowers like the Brock Badgers, but their medals gained on the mats in 2020 show that they can be stronger than expected.

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