DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - For the third straight year, SIUE left the annual National Collegiate Wrestling Association's (NCWA) national championships with a tournament title.
Brendan Murphy won the 133-pound weight class to become SIUE's third NCWA national champion in as many years. Murphy, a sophomore, defeated Cal Martin's Alex Anunciation 4-3 in the championship match. He completed his season with a 24-4 record.
SIUE Head Coach David Ray said Murphy set his sights on winning the national title and did just that.
"He did what he needed to do to win his matches," said Ray. "He wrestled well all three days at this tournament, and we're real happy for him."
Deshoun White finished second at the 174-pound weight class for the second year in a row. White lost 6-3 to Notre Dame's (Ohio) Jonathan Bittinger in the title match.
"It was a tougher weight class this year. Deshoun really believed in himself more this year than he did last year," said Ray. "He wrestled hard. I was really pleased with how Deshoun listened to the coaching staff. He listened to us and then went out and executed the moves on the mat."
Dillon Pousson also finished with NCWA All-American status at 141 pounds. The Cougar junior placed eighth after a knee injury kept him from battling for seventh place.
As a team, SIUE placed seventh out of 79 teams at the event held at the Ocean Center.
This was SIUE's final appearance at the NWCA meet. Ray said it served a good purpose for the Cougars.
"It gave these guys something to focus on to end the season rather than just ending it after the dual meet season," said Ray.