Nine members of the Penn wrestling team earned All-Ivy League honors this season. Leading the way were the Quakers’ three Matt’s junior Matt Valenti, freshman Matt Dragon and junior Matt Herrington, who were all named unanimous first-team All-Ivy.
Valenti won Easterns at 133 pounds. He was 31-2 in the regular season, including 5-0 in Ivy matches. He has also topped the 100-victory plateau with a full season remaining. Dragon was the clear choice at 149 after breezing through the Ivy season with a 5-0 record (29-6 overall). He also won at Easterns. Herrington, at 174 pounds, was 5-0 in Ivy action and took second at EIWAs.
Senior Paul Velekei was Penn’s lone second-team honoree. He went 4-1 in conference action at 197 pounds. He placed fifth at the EIWAs with a 19-8 overall record.
The Red and Blue had five wrestlers receive honorable mention All-Ivy - Mike Silengo (125), Cesar Grajales (141), Gene Zannetti (157), Lior Zamir (165) and Dustin Wiles (184). Silengo was 3-2 in league action and is 19-7 on the season. Grajales also went 3-2 in the conference and 25-10 overall. Grajales and Silengo both finished third at the EIWA Championships and will represent Penn at the NCAA Championships. Zannetti and Zamir went 3-2 and 2-2, respectively in League action. Zannetti took fifth at the Easterns and finishes the season with a 24-12 record. Wiles took third at the EIWA Championships after compiling a 3-2 conference record. He takes a 27-10 record into the NCAA Championships.
Cornell’s Troy Nickerson was named Wrestler and Rookie of the Year. He is the first male athlete in Ivy League history to earn the distinction in the same year.
The Quakers and Big Red each had nine grapplers earn All-Ivy nods.
Six Quakers will compete at the 2006 NCAA Championships at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City. Penn still has tickets available. Please call 215.898.6151.