All-America Wrestler Honored By NWCA
WASHINGTON, Pa. -- For the second consecutive season, Washington & Jefferson College junior Josh Etzel (Elizabeth, Pa./Elizabeth Forward) has been selected as a Division III Scholar All-American by the National Wrestling Coaches Association.
Etzel also helped W&J to the 17th-best team grade-point average in NCAA Division III at a combined 3.27. The Presidents have landed among the top 25 academic wrestling programs in each of Head Coach Tommy Prairie’s first two seasons.
Etzel owns a 3.805 GPA as a biochemistry major. He also minors in pre-health and is vice president of Phi Psi. Etzel has earned PAC Academic Honor Roll laurels twice during his career and is a four-time conference wrestler of the week award winner.
The two-time Presidents’ Athletic Conference champion became W&J’s first NCAA All-American since 2002 last week after placing sixth in the 157-pound weight class at the national championships in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Etzel posted a 3-3 record at the tournament to finish the season with a 37-7 record. The 37 victories set a school record, topping the 36 won in single seasons by Kevin DeJuliis ’03 and Taylor Potts ’12.
Etzel, the 2012 NCAA Midwest Regional 141-pound champion, will enter his final collegiate season with a 68-13 record (.840). He currently sits 14th on the school’s all-time win list and he has a chance to become only the fourth wrestler in school history to win 100 matches (DeJuliis - 117, Matt Smith ’05 - 113, Wes Koteski ’02 - 108).
Washington & Jefferson has produced at least one NWCA scholar in each of the last four seasons. Ten different W&J wrestlers throughout history have been honored with Etzel becoming just the second two-time winner. Jayson Hobbs ’00 earned the distinction in 1999 and 2000.