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Pitt wrestler Phillippi upsets longtime friend, rival Pletcher in Las Vegas |

Pitt wrestler Phillippi upsets longtime friend, rival Pletcher in Las Vegas

Bill Beckner Jr.
| Saturday, December 1, 2018 3:45 p.m

Pitt redshirt freshman Micky Phillippi used to battle Ohio State junior Luke Pletcher in local wrestling tournaments like the Westmoreland County Coaches Association Championships.

The longtime friends and foes both were three-time PIAA champions, Phillippi at Derry and Pletcher at Latrobe.

The stage on which they compete these days has changed, but Phillippi still has the upper hand in the rivalry that always attracts local interest.

Phillippi scored a 2-1 upset over Pletcher Saturday in the 133-pound semifinals of the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Collegiate Invitational. Pletcher was ranked No. 5 in the country in the weight class.

No. 17 Phillippi, who was granted a clock waiver in the summer to give him four years in his college career after transferring from Virginia, used riding time to edge out Pletcher and advance to the finals where he will meet No. 2 Nick Suriano of Rutgers in the title match at 6 tonight.

Phillippi sat out last season due to NCAA transfer rules.

In the 2016 WCCA finals, Phillippi clipped Pletcher in a 3-2 rideout victory for a long-awaited measure of revenge. With the win, he snapped a seven-match losing streak against his neighboring foe.

Bill Beckner is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bill at or via Twitter @BillBeckner.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review local sports editor. You can contact Bill at 724-224-2696, or via Twitter .

Categories: Pitt
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