Brackets announced for NJCAA Wrestling Championships

The brackets for the 2008 NJCAA Wrestling National Championships have been announced.  Gallaway Longenecker (Manheim, PA), Cory Merchant (Cobleskill-Richmondville), and Andy Wright (Hilton) will represent Alfred State College in the event to be held February 22 & 23 in Rochester, MN.

Longenecker claimed the Most Outstanding Wrestler award as he claimed the title at 133 lbs. in last weekend's District/Region Championship.  He is currently 17-2 on the season with his lone losses of the season coming in the season opening University of Buffalo Open.  Longenecker is currently ranked #8 in his weight class.

After a first round bye, Longenecker will take on Michael Slaughter (Spartanburg Methodist) in a 2nd round match.  The winner of that match would meet #10 Justin Dixon (Ellsworth CC), Jubran Nassar (Muskegon CC), or Eleazar Islas (Pima CC).

Merchant also has a first round bye in competition at 125 lbs.  He will take on the winner of #7 Donte Butler (Neosho CCC) and Jeremy Szekely (Muskegon) in his second round match.  Merchant battled injuries most of the first half of the season but shook them off and earned a 3rd place finish at the District/Region championshps this past weekend.

Wright is the lone Pioneer that will wrestle in the first round.  He is paired to tangle with Dan Pynn (Neosho CCC) in a first round battle with the winner taking on #2 seed John Bates (Clackamas CCC).  Wright also earned a 3rd place finish at last weekend's qualifying tournament.

Longenecker is making his second trip to Minnesota for Nationals.  He was 2-2 wrestling in the 125 lb. weight class in last year's competition.

Action is scheduled to begin 9:30 a.m. (CST) on Friday, February 22.  For more information on the tournament visit the official tournament web-site at: http://www.rochsports.org/2008njcaawrestling.php