Bucknell's Andy Rendos Clinches All-America Honors, Can Finish as High as Third at NCAA Wrestling Championships
March 20, 2009
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - For the first time in 14 years, the Bucknell wrestling program has produced an All-American. Bison junior Andy Rendos (Brockway, Pa./Brockway Area) went 2-1 on Friday at the NCAA Wrestling Championships and is guaranteed to finish in the top six of the 165-pound weight class. The top eight finishers in each weight class are named All-Americans.
Rendos, who is 4-1 this weekend and 32-7 overall this year, can finish as high as third after entering the championships unseeded. He will wrestle eighth-seeded Jonathan Reader of Iowa State Saturday morning. Rendos and Reader faced each other at last year's NCAA Championships with Reader winning 8-2.
With a top-six showing guaranteed, Rendos will have at least the second-best showing in program history at the NCAA Championships. Currently, Tom Marchetti's fourth-place finish at 167 pounds in 1989 is the top placing for a Bison.
Rendos is Bucknell's first All-American since Bobby Ferraro in 1994 and 1995. Only Marchetti, Ferraro and Bryan Burns had earned All-America citations prior to Rendos.
Rendos opened Friday's competition in the quarterfinals, but lost to second-seeded Andrew Howe of Wisconsin, who is in Saturday night's championship bout. Howe posted a 7-3 victory over Rendos.
Needing just one win to cement All-America honors, Rendos defeated Penn State's Dan Vallimont in the consolation bracket, guaranteeing a top-eight showing. Rendos led 3-0 entering the third period, but Vallimont tied the score. Rendos then earned an escape and the riding time point for a two-point victory.
Rendos closed the day with a convincing 11-2 major decision over Boise State's Tyler Sherfey. After facing three seeded opponents in his first three matches, Rendos drew a pair of unseeded foes in his final two bouts Friday.
Four other Bucknell grapplers were in action in the consolation brackets Friday. Kevin LeValley (Hugo, Colo./Limon), Shane Riccio (Warren, N.J./Watchung Hills) and David Thompson (West Liberty, Ohio/Graham Local), who each earned a win on Thursday, each lost his first match Friday. Additionally, David Marble (Harpursville, N.Y./Harpursville Central), a three-time NCAA qualifier, was in action and went 1-1. The junior defeated Cal State Bakersfield's Thomas Kimbrell 14-9 before falling to 11th-seeded Mike Grey of Cornell, 13-5. Marble was 3-2 at the NCAA Championships, giving him five all-time NCAA victories.
Bucknell, which has just three classes of recruited wrestlers, stands 30th of 76 teams after the second of three days of competition. The Bison have 18.5 points, just 0.5 points behind perennial power Oklahoma and two points behind conference rival Lehigh.
Over the last two days, Bucknell's six NCAA qualifiers combined for a 10-11 record, including 4-7 vs. seeded opponents.
Rendos will be back in action Saturday morning against Reader. The medal round will be broadcast on ESPNU starting at 10:30 a.m. (Eastern).
125: Derek Reber (unseeded), Fr., Lewisburg, Pa.
133: David Marble (unseeded), Jr., Harpursville, N.Y.
149: Kevin LeValley (unseeded), So., Hugo, Colo.
165: Andy Rendos (unseeded), Jr., Brockway, Pa.
174: Shane Riccio (unseeded), Jr., Warren, N.J.
184: David Thompson (unseeded), So., West Liberty, Ohio