Mercer Wrestling started its third season Saturday, November 4, hosting the ďBear OpenĒ tournament for local Georgia colleges and universities. The Mercer team is part of the National Collegiate Wrestling Association, which has more than 130 teams nationwide. Mercerís wrestlers do not have wrestling scholarships and compete for the love of the sport.
Saturday was a very positive start to Mercerís season. Even though the Bears were missing two wrestlers who had prior ROTC commitments, the team placed second behind UGA. Two of Mercerís wrestlers went undefeated for the day to become this seasonís first champions. Mercerís first champion was Curtis Doemel in the 149 lbs weight class. Curtis pinned his first three opponents, setting up a tough finals bout in which Curtis beat Allen Taylor of UGA in a stunning overtime match. Senior Richard Sexton also wrestled extremely well and went undefeated for the day. Richard beat older brother Craig Taylor 6-0 in the deciding championship match. Mercer also had two second-place finishers: Josh Villalta at 133 lbs and Walter Gordon at 235 lbs. Wrapping up Mercerís place finishers for the day were third-place finishers Elliot McCrary (157 lbs) and Casey Geiger (165 lbs).
Mercer goes to the University of North Carolina at Pembroke November 11 for a tournament with NCAA D1, D2, D3, NJCAA, and NAIA scholarship wrestlers.