SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Plymouth State College won consecutive wrestling matches over Wesleyan and Trinity to capture the back-draw and place ninth overall Sunday at the New England College Conference Wrestling Association's Dual Meet Championship, hosted by Springfield College.
The ninth-seeded Panthers were knocked off in the opening round by eighth-seeded Coast Guard, 25-19. After a bye, PSC came back to defeat 12th-seeded Wesleyan, 30-10, and 10th-seeded Trinity, 33-15. The two wins and one loss leave PSC's dual meet record at 6-5 on the season.
Springfield captured the overall team team, defeating Norwich in the championship bout, 21-15. Williams downed Johnson & Wales in the third place match, 32-23; Coast Guard edged Bridgewater State for fifth place, 22-20; and WPI nipped Roger Williams in the seventh place battle, 25-24.
The Panthers were led by senior Ben Baker (Gardiner, Maine) and freshman Jared Raymond (Danville, NH), who captured wins in all three meets. Baker picked up a victory at 184 pounds by decision and wins at 174 pounds by a pin and a forfeit to improve his team-leading season record to 21-3. Raymond won twice at 125 pounds and once at 133 to improve his record to 8-5.
Sophomore Eric Runci (Whitman, Mass.) also posted a 2-1 mark on the afternoon. He won decisions at 149 pounds over Coast Guard and Wesleyan before suffering a defeat against Trinity, moving his season record to 17-11. Freshman Dana Grenon (Laconia, NH) earned a decision against Wesleyan at 125 pounds in his only appearance.
The remaining Panthers to register victories on the mat were senior Shawn Kain (Lakeville, Mass.) at 165 pounds with a pin of Jeff Bean of Wesleyan, junior Marco Salce (Keene, NH) with a decision over Wesleyan's Nick Bazos at 184, and senior Mike DeRoehn (Warren, NH) with a pin of Trinity's Noah Cox at 157.
The Panthers, guided by fifth-year head coach Dave Carlson, host WPI this Wednesday (Jan. 26) in the final home meet of the season at Foley Gymnasium (7 p.m.).
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