2017-05-19 / Sports

Athens' Cannavino, Horton sign with Wilkes University

For the Review

ATHENS — Athens wrestling has seen some of their top wrestlers from this past season sign on to continue wrestling at the college level.

On Thursday, Gage Cannavino and Brock Horton were added to the list as they both signed letters of intent to become grapplers at Wilkes University — A Division-III program in the Metropolitan Wrestling Conference.

When Cannavino went through his college search, he shortly found Wilkes to be the right fit. Hearing positive vibes about the Colonels wrestling program sold the Athens senior even more.

“I wanted to stay close to home and I have good friends living in the area,” Cannavino said. “I’ve heard good things about the school, especially the wrestling program.”

What’s even sweeter about Cannavino joining Wilkes wrestling is knowing he’ll see a familiar face right away in his first season.

“It’s great,” Cannavino said about Horton being his teammate for another four years. “I’ve been close with Brock for years. It’s good to know I’ll know someone on the team and someone to run drills with.”

As of right now, Cannavino is in between the 149- and 157-weight class when discussing with Colonels head coach Jon Laudenslager where he will be placed.

“I’m looking to get ready, be prepared and have fun,” Cannavino said.

Cannavino finished with a 118-44 career record at Athens. In his final season at 145 with the ‘Cats, Cannavino won the North Section Tournament, placed third at districts and fifth at regionals.

The former Athens grappler considered Lycoming College and Lock Haven University before choosing Wilkes.

As for Horton wrestling was a plus, but the academics were what drew him to Wilkes the most.

“I went down and toured the college. Right away I liked the atmosphere, especially when I sat in on the classes,” Horton said. “I think it’s a good choice for me.”

Horton’s first weight class at Wilkes is currently undecided, but Horton mentioned he’s at 133 pounds. With that said, Horton may either keep the weight he’s at or bulk up over the summer.

“(Laudenslager) has me on a lifting program, just like the rest of the team,” Horton said. “He just wants me to keep lifting throughout the summer so I can keep in shape for the season.”

It’s a toss up on how Horton’s first season with Wilkes will go, but he’s looking for as much mat time as possible.

“I’m looking to make the lineup and compete in as many matches as I can in my first season,” Horton said. “I just want to do the best that I can.”

Horton compiled a 114-38 career record with the Wildcats. The Athens senior won the North Section title at 126 and finished sixth at districts.

Horton considered Penn College of Technology before signing on with Wilkes.

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