Waddell qualifies for NCAA Div. I Championships

  • The University of Tennessee — Chattanooga’s Matthew Waddell turned in a runner-up finish at the Southern Conference Championships to qualify for next week’s NCAA Division I Championships in Minneapolis, Minn. Waddell is a 2017 Gilmer High School graduate. (Contributed photo by Pam Ruschell)
    The University of Tennessee — Chattanooga’s Matthew Waddell turned in a runner-up finish at the Southern Conference Championships to qualify for next week’s NCAA Division I Championships in Minneapolis, Minn. Waddell is a 2017 Gilmer High School graduate. (Contributed photo by Pam Ruschell)
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Matthew Waddell’s wrestling season will continue at the NCAA Division I Championships next week.

Waddell, who wrestles at the University of Tennessee — Chattanooga, finished second in the 184-pound weight class at Sunday’s Southern Conference Championships in Boone, N.C.

The Southern Conference receives two NCAA allocations at the 184-pound weight class, which makes Waddell Gilmer County’s first-ever wrestler to qualify for the NCAA Division I Championships.

Waddell was seeded No. 2 and advanced to the 184-pound conference finals by pinning VMI’s Max Gallahan in the first round and doing the same to Davidson’s Gavin Henry in the semifinals.

Andrew Morgan (ranked No. 8 nationally) of Campbell University was seeded No. 1 and pinned his way to the finals as well where he defeated Waddell, 10-2.

Seeds for the NCAA Championships will be unveiled Wednesday at Ncaa.com. The tournament will be held March 19-21 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn. 

Waddell is currently the No. 16 nationally ranked 184-pound wrestler and has a 22-9 record.