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SoCon Conference Recap (11/17/21)

Appalachian State 125 lber Caleb Smith (Photo/Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)

This weekend there was a lot of #SoConWR, with plenty of dual meet and tournament action to fill up our calendars.

Appalachian State University: The second-annual Mountaineer Invitational was held in Varsity Gym this weekend, hosting Air Force, Arizona State, Duke, Gardner-Webb, Indiana, and Kent State, with other programs competing in the Open Division (Life University and VMI). The Invitational finals resembled a dual meet for the Mountaineers, who sent six to the finals. Caleb Smith (125), Anthony Brito (141), Jonathan Millner (149), Cody Bond (157), Will Formato (165), and Mason Fiscella (197) were all runners-up for the weekend. Third placers for App State included Thomas Flitz (174) and Michael Burchell (HWT) in the Invitational. The Mountaineers will resume action next weekend at the Keystone Classic.

Bellarmine University: The Knights attended George Mason's Patriot Duals, where they took three tough losses to Averett (22-16), Bucknell (39-2), and George Mason (36-3). Notable performances of the weekend were seen from Cole Nance (157) and Eric Beck (174), both picking up wins during their matchups against Averett, while Beck picked up a hard-fought 5-4 win over Bucknell's Nolan Springer, and Nance pulled out a 6-4 decision over George Mason's Avery Bassett. Coach Shuck and company will face off next at the Purdue Duals on November 21, with matchups against Duke, Brown, and Northern Illinois.

Campbell University: Taye Ghadiali had a fantastic showing at the Wolfpack Open this weekend, bringing home the heavyweight championship title with wins over ACC champion Deonte Wilson and national qualifier Hunter Catka. Twelve other Camels placed at the Wolfpack Open, with top-four finishes as follows: 2nd - Korbin Meink (125), Caleb Hopkins (184); 3rd - Domenic Zaccone (133), Shannon Hanna (141); 4th - Troy Nation (165) and Levi Hopkins (197). Next weekend Campbell will be facing ACC opponents back-to-back on Saturday at UVA, and UNC on Sunday.

Chattanooga: The Chattanooga Mocs had a weekend full of dual-meet action at Davidson's Quad, picking up an 18-16 win over Davidson, then dropping losses to Clarion (22-16) and #12 Rutgers (39-3). Fabian Gutierrez (125) had the fastest pin in his career over Davidson's Hale Robinson in 1:41. Chattanooga's biggest win of the day over Clarion was a major decision at 133, Brayden Palmer over Alex Blake. It is all the sweeter as the win came over Palmer's former team. For the final matchup of the day against Rutgers, the sole victory for the Mocs was at 165, Weston Wichman taking a decision over Andrew Clark. Chattanooga will be back in action on December 11, at a tri-meet versus Illinois and SIU Edwardsville.

The Citadel: The Citadel went up against Presbyterian College at the Low Country Brawl, held outside on a beautiful Saturday at McKissick Field in Summerville, SC. The Bulldogs won the dual meet 42-3, dropping their lone loss at 149 by a 3-1 decision. Dazjon Casto (157) and Ben Stemmet (197) both pinned their opponents, with Cole Burke (174) pulling through a 9-1 major decision. Coach LeBlanc will lead the Bulldogs to the Navy Classic this weekend for their next competition.

Davidson College: The Wildcats hosted their first-ever Quad Meet over the weekend, dropping three duals to Chattanooga (18-16), Rutgers (34-6), and Clarion (29-12). Gavin Damasco (141) and Bryce Sanderlin (157) had sudden-victory overtime wins against Chattanooga's Colton Landers and Weston Wichman, respectively, while heavyweight Mitchell Trigg took a major decision over Mattias Ervin. Sanderlin (157) clinched a 3-1 decision over Clarion's Trevor Elfvin, picking up his second win of the day alongside Trigg (285), who battled it out against Austin Chapman in overtime to receive a 5-1 victory. The 'Cats will host West Virginia University this Friday at the Baker Sports Complex at 7:00pm.

Gardner-Webb University: The Runnin' Bulldogs made the trek to Boone over the weekend for the Mountaineer Invitational, bringing two fourth place and two sixth-place finishes back to Boiling Springs. Jha'Quan Anderson (184) and Anthony Perrine (197) placed fourth, both winning matches by decision over Duke's Vincent Baker and Luke Chakonis. Sixth-place finishers Evan Schenk (174) and Peyton McComas (285) picked up wins over Conor Becker (Duke, 174) and Jacob Sartorio (Appalachian State, HWT). Gardner-Webb will suit up against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg at 1:00pm this Saturday.

Presbyterian College: The Blue Hose faced off against The Citadel for the Low Country Brawl, losing 42-3. Their lone win of the day came from Reid Stewart (149), who took a 3-1 decision over Ethan Willis. Presbyterian will return to competition on December 8 against Truett McConnell University at home.

Virginia Military Institute: The Keydets were at the Journeymen Collegiate Classic, bringing home nine top-four finishers in their pools to cap off a weekend of #SoConWR action. Second-place finishers include freshmen Sam Congleton (125), Justin Hart (184), Josh Evans (HWT), and Max Gourley (184). Zach Brown (184), Luke Hart (149), and Jake Waldron (157) placed third, while Freddy Junko (141) and Joel Diaz (174) placed fourth in their pools. VMI will join The Citadel for the Navy Classic this Saturday for their next bout of competition.

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