Willey and Wheeler each go 4-0 for Panthers
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Plymouth State University wrestling team split four dual matches Sunday afternoon and wound up in 11th place at the New England Wrestling Association (NEWA) Dual Meet Championships, hosted by Springfield College.
The Panthers were seeded 12th in the 14-team affair, and dropped their opening match to #5 Roger Williams University, 32-12. PSU bounced back with a 29-8 victory over 13th-seeded Coast Guard, followed by a 24-13 setback to #8 Williams College, and ended up with a 22-21 triumph over #11 WPI, which was determined by a tiebreaker.
Host and top-seeded Springfield defeated second-seeded Johnson & Wales University for the championship. The PSU-WPI match was for 11th and 12th place; the final score was tied at 21-21, but PSU won the tiebreaker criteria (most victories).
Senior Mike Willey and junior Femi Wheeler led the way for the Panthers, each going 4-0 on the day. Willey, who is ranked #2 in New England at 149 pounds, won four bouts to improve his season record to 12-3, while Wheeler captured four wins at 157 pounds to improve to 13-4.
Seniors Rob Phillips and Dan Curley each went 3-1 on the day for PSU. Phillips, who is ranked #6 in New England at 184 pounds, captured three bouts to improve his season record to a team-leading 21-7, while Curley earned three victories at 174 pounds to improve to 5-12. Senior Jimmy Tarpey posted a 2-2 mark on the day at 165 pounds, and freshman Adam Reed recorded a key win against WPI at 197 pounds that proved pivotal in the team decision.
The Panthers, 4-9, are back in action Saturday with a tri-meet at WPI that also includes the University of Southern Maine.
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