Wheeler captures title; Matlack, Brooks are place-winners for Panthers
BRISTOL, R.I. – Senior Femi Wheeler (Mamaroneck, N.Y.) captured the championship at 157 pounds Saturday to lead the Plymouth State University wrestling team to a fifth place finish among eight teams at the Scott Viera Invitational hosted by Roger Williams University.
Wheeler was one of three Panther place winners in the 10 weight classes. Senior James Matlack (Ewing, N.J.) took third place in the 165-pound weight class and junior Travis Brooks (Beachwood, N.J.) wound up fourth in the 174-pound bracket.
The Panthers finished with 58 points as a team to wind up in fifth place. Springfield College claimed the team title with 175.5 points, well ahead of host RWU with 126. Williams College was third with 95, followed by STCC (65), PSU (58), AIC (49), Johnson & Wales (46) and Western New England (25).
Wheeler won four straight decisions to capture the title at 157, his second tournament win this season following his championship at the Ted Reese Invitational at the University of Southern Maine. Wheeler improved his season record to 9-1 and his career mark to 67-33.
Matlack captured four out of his six matches at 165. He won by fall and by decision before his first loss, and added two more wins in the back draw, including another pin. Matlack is now 9-5 this season and 35-27 in his career. Brooks, who was making his first appearance on the mat for the Panthers in nearly two years, rebounded from a first-round loss to the eventual champion from Springfield; he posted four consecutive wins in the back draw before losing by decision in the third-fourth place bout.
Sophomore Alex Gerhold (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton) had a solid tournament for the Panthers with a win by decision and a win by fall in four bouts at 141 pounds.
PSU returns to competition next Friday, Jan. 11, with a dual match at Bridgewater State University (6:00 p.m.)
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