DUBUQUE, Iowa -- Several UW-Platteville wrestlers gained valuable experience against strong competition at the Flash Flanagan Open Saturday at Loras College.
The meet featured wrestlers from national NCAA Division I powerhouses Iowa, Wisconsin, Northern Iowa as well as some of the top wrestlers in NCAA III. Some of the wrestlers are redshirting this year, meaning they technically did not represent their school but wrestled in the open meet.
Zachary Stenger placed third at 125 pounds, winning by a fall at the end of the first period to stop Bryant Clay, an unattached competitor from Drury, then beat Loras' Matt Randone 4-0.
Nick Retzlaff had the Pioneers' next best finish, recorded a pair of pins to place fourth at 157, while Anthony Metallo, who opened with a win over Northern Illinois' Brad Green, was sixth in the same weight class.
Blake Kittleson had a strong showing by placing sixth at 141 with two wins, both by pins. He stopped Brock Rathburn, an unattached wrestler from Iowa, in 2:20, then pinned Triton College's Andrez Moscator in 3:46.
Michael Belanger won three matches to place sixth at 165. No team scores were kept in the open meet.
The Pioneers have two big home matches coming up. UW-Platteville, ranked 17th in this week's National Wrestling Coaches Association poll, puts its 4-0 mark on the line against fourth-ranked UW-La Crosse, who rolls into Williams Fieldhouse at 5-0. That match is Thursday at 7 p.m.
On Jan. 20, the Pioneers face Augustana College in the first-ever Throwdown in the Theatre at the UW-Platteville Center for Fine Arts. Advance tickets for the theater match are available at https://sa1.seatadvisor.com/sabo/servlets/EventSearch?presenter=UWP
By Paul Erickson, Director, UW-Platteville Communications, 608.342.1194, firstname.lastname@example.org.