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UNI Captures A Trio Of Wrestlers In Early Signing Period



Cedar Falls, IA The University of Northern Iowa head wrestling coach Brad Penrith has recruited three highly acclaimed wrestlers in the early signing period. After signing their letter-of-intent, Mark Manchio, Michael Shedek, and Josh Watts have agreed to compete on the mat for the Panthers next season. "We have not only signed three outstanding athletes, but we have also signed three great students,* remarked Penrith. "hese wrestlers come from very supportive families and we are lucky to have them at UNI." Manchio of Sterling High School (New Jersey) has decided to compete for the Panthers after being highly recruited by Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Buffalo. Manchio is the number two ranked high school wrestler by InterMat with 70 consecutive wins. His career record is 102-2 with 66 career pins. He is a two-time state champion and runner-up his freshman year. As a junior, Manchio defeated the number two ranked senior, Jimmy Lewis, out of El Reno, OK, in the toughest tournament in the country, the Beast from the East Tournament. He will be competing for UNI at the 141/149 weight class. "To go into the East Coast and to bring one of the top wrestlers to the Midwest and to UNI is a great accomplishment and reflection of our wrestling program," said Penrith. "We feel that Manchio will make an impact on this program and we are excited to have him join the team.* Shedek from Cedar Rapids (IA) Xavier High School also has signed a letter-of-intent to compete for the Panthers next season. Shedek is the defending 3A state champion at heavyweight. He finished his junior year with a 31-1 record. He is ranked fifth in the nation by InterMat. "It is great to land one of the top wrestlers in the state," said Penrith. "He will be a great asset to our program in the future and will help solidify the heavyweight position." Watts joins the UNI wrestling program after a successful high school career at Davenport (IA) Assumption. Watts is a two-time Iowa state champion at 125. During his two state titles, he went undefeated. His sophomore season, Watts finished fourth at the state tournament as he suffered his first loss and a season ending ankle injury. InterMat has Watts ranked number two in the country. "We are very excited to sign one of the top wrestlers in the country who also happens to be from the state of Iowa," said Penrith. "Watts is a fierce competitor who is dominant and excels on the mat."
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