For the first time in the 105 year old rivalry, Lehigh now had taken the lead over the Naval Academy 48-47, and a few ties, with a scintillating drubbing of the Middies. A number of bonus point wins and a fall by Martinez at his new 174 pound weight class. Peppleman lost a tight 2-0 decision to the #13 guy in the country (riding time and an escape). Next up are the Terrapins Sunday afternoon. Eyes on March!
My class saw a steady decline in the team (68-72) at the tail end of the Gerry Leeman era. Navy & Penn State were consistently better than us. Navy killed us my freshman year as I recall. And they brought a bunch of Midshipmen to help fill Grace. And I remember thinking how can a school like Lehigh continue to compete at this level.
The final straw was a drubbing by Iowa State at Grace that year. They had a great team including some highly touted sophomore in his first year of varsity competition taking on Gerry’s son Jay. This hot shot Cyclone wore these real thick Coke bottle type glasses and made a mockery of the initial hand shake. Pretended to trip over the circle on the mat at the initial introductions and did almost a genuflection to Jay at the hand shake. The match lasted less than 30 seconds as I recall. Some guy named Gable. http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/sports/index.ssf/2014/02/dan_gable.html
Fortunately Thad Turner came along. And we have consistently gone up and done over the years base on the quality of the head coach. Back in ’69 I never thought we’d ever catch Navy in the series. Hopefully this is an omen for the future of the Santoro administration.