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April 4, 2003

 

Six Rhode Island College Wrestlers Earn Pilgrim Wrestling League All-Star Honors

 

Providence, RI--The Rhode Island College wrestling team had six of its grapplers earn Pilgrim Wrestling League All-Star honors for their performances during the 2002-03 season.

 

Senior captain Mike Riley (Lowell, MA) earned First Team All-Pilgrim League honors at 133 lbs. for the second consecutive year. He was a Second Team All-Pilgrim League selection as a sophomore in 2000-01.

 

Riley, who was also named the team MVP, closed out his collegiate wrestling career at the NCAA Div. III National Championships, hosted by Ohio Northern University, on Mar. 7-8. It was the second time in his career he qualified for the National Championships (2000-01). He had an outstanding senior season in 2002-03, becoming the New England Champion at 133 lbs. at the NECCWA Championships. It was Riley’s first New England title and his third consecutive season earning All-New England honors.

 

The team captain was 31-5 at 133 lbs. with 129 points, 134 takedowns, six reversals, 36 escapes, 24 near-falls and two pins on the season. Riley had won 13 consecutive matches heading into the National Championships. During the regular season, he placed first at 133 lbs. at the Roger Williams Invitational and second at the Doug Parker Invitational.

 

Sophomore assistant captain Justin Deveau (North Attleboro, MA) earned First Team All-Pilgrim League honors at 197 lbs. Deveau was also named to the Pilgrim Wrestling League’s Scholar-Athlete All-Star Team. He was a Second Team All-Pilgrim League selection as a freshman in 2001-02. Deveau earned All-New England honors for the second consecutive season, placing second at 197 lbs. at the 2003 NECCWA Championships. He placed second as a freshman (2001-02).

 

Deveau was 33-5 at 197 lbs. with 147 points, 50 takedowns, seven reversals, 31 escapes, 18 near-falls and ten pins on the season. He placed first at 197 lbs. at the Doug Parker Invitational (11/23) and third at the Roger Williams Invitational (11/16). He posted a 22-match win streak during the season, which was snapped at the NECCWA Championships.

 

Freshman Carlos Lopez (Lowell, MA) earned First Team All-Pilgrim League honors at 157 lbs. He earned All-New England honors, placing third at 157 lbs at the 2003 NECCWA Championships. Lopez was 32-13 at 157 lbs. with 124 points, 91 takedowns, two reversals, 41 escapes, eight near-falls and four pins on the season.

 

Sophomore Matt Kelly (Carver, MA) earned Second Team All-Pilgrim League honors at 141 lbs. Kelly was also named to the Pilgrim Wrestling League’s Scholar-Athlete All-Star Team. He was 23-16 at 141 lbs. with 103 points, 32 takedowns, five reversals, 29 escapes, 16 near-falls and ten pins on the season. He placed fourth at 141 lbs. at the Doug Parker Invitational (11/23).

 

Sophomore Keith Nelson (Rhinebeck, NY) earned Second Team All-Pilgrim League honors at 174 lbs. He was also named to the Pilgrim Wrestling League’s Scholar-Athlete All-Star Team. Nelson was 29-18 at 174 lbs. with 112 points, 62 takedowns, nine reversals, 65 escapes, 18 near-falls and six pins on the season. He placed third at 165 lbs. at the Doug Parker Invitational (11/23) and fifth at the Roger Williams Invitational (11/16).

 

Senior assistant captain Mike Penza (Cranston, RI) was an Honorable Mention to the Pilgrim League All-Star team. Penza earned six key victories at 149 lbs. with 27 points, eight takedowns, 27 escapes and two pins on the season. His overtime win in the match vs. Roger Williams was the difference in RIC’s victory over the Hawks, which eventually helped clinch the league title for the Anchormen.

 

Head Coach Jay Jones’ wrestling team posted a 14-10 overall record and a 9-6 mark in the NECCWA during the regular season. RIC captured its first-ever Pilgrim Wrestling League title, finishing the season with a perfect 6-0 record. The Anchormen closed out the 2002-03 season with a seventh place finish (15 teams), and had four grapplers earn All-New England honors, at the 2003 New England College Conference Wrestling Association (NECCWA) Championships, hosted by Roger Williams University, on Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 22-23.

 

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