Newport News, VA - The Marion Military Institute wrestlers finished fourth out of fourteen teams at the 34th Annual Builder Invitational this past weekend. Ferrum College placed first with 165.5 team points while the host school, Apprentice (121.5 points) finished second and West Virginia Tech (115 points) took third.
Marion (90 points) was led by Jesse Garrett, who finished second in the 174-lb. weight class. Garrett lost to VMI's Spencer Buettner 10-6 in the finals match. Trent Lyons (149-lb.), Ronnie Caudill (184-lb.), and John Long (285-lb.) each finished fourth in their respective weight classes. Finishing fifth were Brandon Abejon in the 141-lb. weight class and Deandre Beck in the 157-lb. weight class. Zach Malone (235-lb.) took sixth place.
Marion will travel to Darton, Georgia this weekend to compete in the 2014 NCWA Collegiate Cup. This year's Collegiate Cup, formerly known as the NCWA National Duals, is the springboard for national title contention. The Collegiate Cup champion will earn 24 team points, with second place earning 23, third place 22, and so on down to one point for 24th place, which will transfer into the scoring totals at the NCWA Championships in March. The new scoring system, voted in place by the coaches last summer, unites the NCWA's championship events and is unique among all other major-college championship sports. The scoring change has also been adopted by both the national coaches association and the NCAA Wrestling Committee, and will be implemented in the future. The NCWA is the first to utilize it.
The 24-team field at the 2014 Collegiate Cup includes: Apprentice, Auburn, Central Florida, Connecticut, East Tennessee State, Florida Gulf Coast, Grand Canyon, Grand Valley State, Liberty, Marion Military Institute, Mercier, Miami (Fla.), Middle Tennessee State, MIT, Mott Community College, North Florida, Shorter, South Carolina, South Florida, Southern Virginia, Stony Brook, Tennessee Temple, Texas and Toledo.