Goodsell Takes Third at SoCon Wrestling Championships
LEXINGTON, Va. -- In his final match for the Virginia Military Institute, senior wrestler Ryan Goodsell left a mark on the program, claiming third at 141 pounds during the Southern Conference Wrestling Championships, hosted at VMI’s Cameron Hall.

Goodsell, who finished his senior campaign with a 18-17 record, including a 3-1 day at the SoCon Championships, earned a bid on the podium for the first time in his Keydet career,

The Mocs, who also claimed the SoCon regular season title, amassed 102.5 team points during the Championship, aided by four first-place finishes and four runner-ups. Campbell University took second place with 62.5 points, edging The Citadel’s 59.0 points, good enough for third place. VMI finished eighth during the Championships.

In tough bracket that featured the country’s eighth-ranked wrestler, Goodsell faired quite well. He opened his day with a decisive 6-1 decision over Davidson’s Matt Zarth. In the semifinals, Goodsell fell 5-1 against defending champion and second-seeded Dean Pavlou of Chattanooga.

But in the wrestleback bracket, Goodsell rebounded, edging out fourth-seeded Michael Dahlstrom of Campbell 4-3. In the third-place bout, Goodsell clashed with Gardner-Webb’s Davante Andujar, a wrestler the Keydet narrowly beat, 3-2, during the regular season.

Once again, Goodsell got the best of Andujar. But the Keydet made it count as it was his final match sporting the VMI logo, pinning Andujar in the third period with just over a minute to spare.

Goodsell’s lone senior teammate John Dommert worked his way to the third-place bout at 174 pounds as well, posting upset along the way.

The lanky Dommert started his day off on the right foot, coming up with a major decision against Appalachian State’s Colin Hedash, 10-1, in the first round. The victory was over a vengeful sort; early this season, Hedash posted a 14-6 major decision over Dommert in the team’s conference clash on Feb. 20 in Lexington.

IN a bracket that featured multiple upsets in the first round, Dommert, the No. 7 seed, was lined up with Hunter Gamble, the weight class’ sixth seed. Gamble, who went on to win the division, edged out Dommert 2-1.

For his next match, Dommert logged a second upset of the day as he too earned a 3-2 victory, winning against fourth-seeded Jack Duane of The Citadel. It was another reversal for Dommert, as Duane won the regular season meeting 3-2.

In the title bout, Dommert’s hot run was cooled by third-seeded Jake Residori of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, 4-2.

Chattanooga’s head coach Heath Eslinger was named the Southern Conference Coach of the Year, as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

In a tournament that saw two seventh-seeded wrestlers win their weights, Davidson’s sophomore 133-pounder Anthony Elias was named Most Outstanding Wrestler, voted on by the league’s head coaches during the Championship.

Thirteen student-athletes earned a berth in the NCAA National Championship tournament, with the winner of each weight class securing a spot. Additionally, the Southern Conference was awarded additional spots at 125 pounds, 141 pounds and 165 pounds.

Team Standings:
1) Chattanooga - 102.5
2) Campbell - 62.5
3) The Citadel - 59.0
4) Gardner-Webb - 49.5
5) SIUE - 29.5
6) Appalachian State 27.0
7) Davidson - 25.5
8) VMI - 23.5