Two Monarchs Ranked in Top 20 Nationally

January 03, 2007
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Jan. 3, 2007

NORFOLK, VA -- After placing in one of the toughest tournaments in college wrestling last weekend two Monarch grapplers thrust their names into the national spotlight. David Mendoza, already ranked 17th by, sits at 20th in the W.I.N. Magazine and InterMat polls. True freshman Jesse Strawn is 20th at 184 as he earns his first collegiate national ranking.

Mendoza has burst onto the scene this season with impressive performances on the mat. After losing his first two bouts of the season, one to Purdue heavyweight Chris Kasten and the second to nationally ranked 197-pounder Nick Roy from Michigan, Mendoza has won 15 of his next 17 matches.

Finishing 6th at the Michigan State Open, 5th at the Southern Scuffle, and winning the Mat Town USA Open has opened the eyes of voters around the nation. Also, in dual action, Mendoza toppled nationally ranked George Mason grappler Harry Zander with a pin in 4:59. His 15-4 record is best for ODU and he's second on the squad in falls with five.

Strawn, a true freshman from Holton, Kansas, is ranked for the first time in his career. Strawn dominated the wrestlebacks at the Southern Scuffle for fourth place going 7-2 during the tournament. He leads the Monarchs in pins with seven has improved with every appearance this season.

The rookie took 8th at the Michigan State Open to start the season, earned 6th at the Cornell Body Bar, 5th at the Mat Town USA Open, and has capped off his tournament appearances with a 4th place effort in Greensboro. He helped knock Kent State grappler Eric Chine out of the rankings after Chine spoiled a bid at the championship for Strawn at the Body Bar.

Both Monarchs join three other Monarchs who have already been nationally ranked this season. lists Adam Koballa (133) as 29th, Ryan Williams (141) as 26th, and Chris Brown (157) as 25th in the nation. Brown is also 17th in the Amateur Wrestling News poll.