Chattanooga junior Cody Cleveland was named the Southern Conference co-Wrestler of the Year today. He shares the honor, voted on by the league’s wrestling head coaches, with UNC Greensboro’s Chris Bencivenga.
Cleveland, ranked No. 11 at 141 by Intermatwrestle.com, finished the regular season with a 19-6 overall record. The Tullahoma, Tenn., native also posted a perfect 4-0 conference mark to earn his second All-SoCon honor.
“This is a great honor for Cody,” stated head coach Chris Bono. “He has worked hard and deserves the accolades he is receiving. Hopefully, this momentum will carry him to success in the Southern Conference and NCAA Tournaments.”
The Mocs posted a 12-10 mark in the regular season and were undefeated at 5-0 in conference action. Chattanooga led the way with five all-conference selections and five all-freshman selections. Mocs’ freshmen Jason McCroskey and Dan Waddell were named to both the all-conference and all-freshman team. UTC’s Cleveland (141), Joey Knox (157) and Seth Garvin (165) also secured spots on the all-conference team, while Demetrius Johnson, Ethan Winel and Tyler Roberson earned spots on the all-freshmen team. Garvin is making his second-straight appearance on the all-conference team.
“It is great to see Garvin get his second SoCon honor, especially since this is his senior year,” added Bono. “The fact that we have five on the all-freshman team and two freshmen on the all-conference team also shows that we are in great shape for the future.”
UNC Greensboro and The Citadel each had two wrestlers on the all-conference team. The Spartans’ garnering all-conference honors were Ben Wilmore (149) and Mikal McKee (184). The Bulldogs were paced by Tyler Sim (125) and Odie Delaney (197). The Bulldogs’ all-freshmen team members included J.C. Oddo, Delaney and Richard Alarcon.
Appalachian State’s Frank Celorrio (133) and VMI’s Josh Wine (Heavyweight) rounded out the all-conference list. Wine, a sophomore, is making his second appearance on the all-conference team. The Mountaineers’ all-freshmen team members included Kyle Blevins and Mike Kessler. Keydet Andrew Szymborski was VMI’s lone representative on the all-freshmen team.
Davidson had a pair of wrestlers selected to the all-freshmen team in David DeCamp and Tyler Mullen.
The 2009 SoCon Wrestling Championship gets underway this Saturday, March 7, with first round matches beginning at 11:00 a.m., in Charleston, S.C., at The Citadel’s McAlister Field House.
125 – Tyler Sim – The Citadel
133 – Frank Celorrio – Appalachian State
141 – Cody Cleveland – Chattanooga
149 - Dan Waddell – Chattanooga, Ben Wilmore – UNC Greensboro
157 – Joey Knox – Chattanooga
165 – Seth Garvin – Chattanooga
174 – Jason McCroskey – Chattanooga
184 – Mikal McKee – UNC Greensboro
197 – Odie Delaney – The Citadel
Hwt – Josh Wine – VMI
Jason McCroskey – Chattanooga
Kyle Blevins – Appalachian State
Demetrius Johnson – Chattanooga
J.C. Oddo – The Citadel
Odie Delaney – The Citadel
Dan Waddell – Chattanooga
David DeCamp – Davidson
Tyler Roberson – Chattanooga
Andrew Szymborski – VMI
Ethan Winel – Chattanooga
Mike Kessler – Appalachian State
Richard Alarcon – The Citadel
Tyler Mullen - Davidson
Co-Wrestlers of the Year
Cody Cleveland – Chattanooga
Chris Bencivenga – UNC Greensboro