Updated Sun, Nov 18, 2012 6:03 pm
The Ohio University wrestling team fought its way to a final score of 64.5 and a fourth-place finish out of nine teams in the 34th Annual Navy Classic in Annapolis on Saturday, Nov. 17.
Twelve Bobcat grapplers competed in 10 weight class tournaments throughout the event, with five finishing in the top four spots in their respective divisions.
Cody Walters was the lone Bobcat to come away from the Navy Classic with a first place finish, defeating Sam Wheeler of Mid-American Conference rival Kent State University in the championship of the 174-pound weight class. Walters won by decision, 7-4 in the final and finished 5-0 on the day.
Two other Ohio wrestlers came away with podium finishes. Jeremy Johnson finished as runner-up of the 285-pound weight class, falling by decision, 7-6, in a tight championship bout against Odie Delaney of The Citadel. Meanwhile, in the 184-pound weight class, Ryan Garringer was able to come away with a third place finish.
Harrison Hightower and Phillip Wellington had impressive performances as well, finishing in fourth place in the 165-pound weight class and the 197-pound weight class, respectively.
These five Bobcat placers led Ohio to a solid team finish in the top half of the overall team standings, finishing behind only tournament champion, Kent State, runner-up and tournament host, Navy, and The Citadel; a military college in South Carolina.
MAC rival Kent State took the team crown away from host Navy. The Midshipmen were the defending champions of the event and have won 19 of the 34 championships. The Flashes were ranked 22nd nationally heading into the tournament and led the field with four first-place finishers and a final score of 115.5.
The Bobcats will look to build on the success of the Navy Classic when they begin their one-on-one and conference match schedules. Ohio hosts Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan on Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., respectively.