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WVU Wrestling Sees Watters, Hall Achieve All-American Status



WVU Wrestling Peyton Hall

KANSAS City, Mo. — WVU Wrestling had a fantastic Friday night, with both No. 5 first-year Ty Watters and No. 9 senior Peyton Hall achieving All-American status at the T-Mobile Center.

Watters earns his first All-American honor in his first season, while Hall does it for the second time, finishing in Eighth Place back in 2022. It is the first time that WVU wrestling had two All-Americans in the same season since Matt Lebe at 157 pounds and Greg Jones at 184 pounds did it in 2006.

“Really excited,” West Virginia head coach Tim Flynn said. “It’s good for our program. We scored a lot more points than we did the past couple of years. Very happy.”

Watters (29-5) lost his Quarterfinals match to No. 4 Virginia Tech sophomore Caleb Henson (29-2) on an 8-3 decision in the morning session.

He had to wait until Friday night to show his true talents. He pinned No. 26 Stanford redshirt senior Jordan Abas (19-9) at 3:29 in the second period to earn All-American honors.

Watters then faced off against Big 12 foe No. 8 Iowa State sophomore Casey Swiderski (23-5) in the next round. Swiderski beat Watters 7-4 in sudden victory back in their dual on Feb. 2.

Unlike the previous matchup, Watters stayed in complete control throughout, winning a 10-1 major decision on three takedowns.

He will take on No. 2 Arizona State redshirt junior Kyle Parco Saturday morning. Winner of that competes in the Third Place match, while the loser competes for Fifth Place.

Watters is the first All-American for WVU wrestling at 149 pounds. He is also just the third WVU wrestler to earn All-American honors as a first-year, joining Brandon Rader in 2006 and Zeke Moisey in 2015.

Hall lost in the Round of 16 on Thursday, which meant he had to start in the Consolation Rounds on Friday.

He pinned No. 26 Campbell sophomore Domonic Baker (26-9) in the Second Round at 2:06 in the second period and then won a 15-2 major decision against No. 31 Northwestern redshirt junior Maxx Mayfield (17-17) in the Third Round to make it to the Round of 12.

Hall took on a tough opponent in No. 3 Cornell junior Julian Ramirez (24-4) Friday night. He made two takedowns on Ramirez and won 7-2 decision after riding time to achieve All-American status.

He would lose to No. 20 Stanford redshirt first-year Hunter Garvin (25-10) later Friday night, meaning he’ll wrestle once in the Seventh Place match. There, he takes on No. 8 Nebraska first-year Antrell Taylor (23-9) Saturday morning.

Watters complimented Hall on his efforts and for making him a better wrestler all season long, getting them both to the podium.

I think, I don’t know if it’s [the same] for him, but he definitely pushes me a lot,” Watters said. “Like, when we’re in the room, and he’s going to 10 of something, I want to do 11. I just always want to beat him up and, I don’t know, beat him in anything and he’s definitely pushed me a lot to get better and I thank him a lot.

Hall grateful to get back to the podium as a Mountaineer, especially after losing early in the Consolation Rounds last year.

“It feels great after last season,” Hall said. “So, seeing all the hard work this year, making the right decisions, seeing it all pay off, it definitely is all worth it.”

Watters and Hall will wrestle Saturday morning with action set to start at 10:00 a.m. CST or 11:00 a.m. in Morgantown, W.Va.

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