Top-ranked wrestlers excelling in the classroom

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Penn State Nittany Lion wrestling team, under the direction of head coach Cael Sanderson, is coming off a strong performance in the classroom this past fall. The No. 1-ranked, three-time defending NCAA and Big Ten Champions posted a 3.13 team grade point average for 2013-14's first semester.

"We are very proud of our team's success in the classroom," said assistant coach Nick Fanthorpe, who oversees Penn State's continuous academic efforts. "Every semester we set a team cumulative GPA goal of 3.0 and higher and we are happy to say that we have exceeded that goal this Fall."

While the outstanding team GPA is a combined team-effort, there are a number of individual performances of note. Red-shirt junior Matt Brown (West Valley City, Utah), ranked No. 3 at 174, posted a perfect 4.0 GPA this fall, as did senior James English (York, Pa.). Brown is a Crime, Law and Justice major. English, a '13 Chemical Engineering grad, is pursuing a second degree in Energy, Business and Finance.

True freshman Zain Retherford (Benton, Pa.), undefeated and ranked No. 2 at 141, posted a 3.82 GPA in his first collegiate semester. He is a Business Administration major. Red-shirt freshman Caleb Livingston (Drexel Hill, Pa.) posted a 3.77 GPA in DUS as well. Red-shirt sophomore Luke Frey (Montoursville, Pa.) earned a 3.7 GPA in Bio-behavioral Health.

David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio), undefeated and ranked No. 1 at 165, posted a 3.67 GPA this Fall. A '13 RPTM/Business major, Taylor is pursuing his graduate degree in Education Administration. Red-shirt junior Kyle Moran (Oxford, Pa.) had a 3.61 GPA in Finance and junior Nico Megaludis (Murrysville, Pa.), ranked No. 2 at 125, earned a 3.60 GPA in Finance as well.

Red-shirt junior Cameron Kelly (Pittsford, N.Y.) had a 3.52 GPA in Kinesiology. Rex Lutz (Easton, Pa.) posted a 3.45 as a Biology (Pre-Medicine) major. Twin brothers Andrew Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.) and Dylan Alton (Mill Hall, Pa.), both red-shirt juniors as well, posted identical 3.33 GPAs this fall. Andrew is ranked No. 7 at 149 while Dylan is ranked No. 4 at 157 and both are RPTM majors.

"The team understands that hard work continues off the mat and we look to improve each semester," said Fanthorpe. "Our goal this Spring will be to do even better." Penn State is set for a split weekend of Big Ten duals. The Nittany Lions visit No. 19 Indiana on Friday for a 7 p.m. match-up and then host No. 14 Northwestern on Sunday at 2 p.m. in sold out Rec Hall.

With the full season of Rec Hall duals sold out prior to the start of the campaign, a very limited number of standing room only tickets are available to a few of the remaining Rec Hall duals. People may purchase tickets by calling 1-800-NITTANY or by visiting the Penn State Athletics ticket office located in the BJC. Fans are encouraged to follow Penn State wrestling via twitter at www.twitter.com/pennstateWREST and on Penn State Wrestling's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/pennstatewrestling. The 2013-14 Penn State Wrestling season is presented by The Family Clothesline.  

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Last Updated January 17, 2014