May 8, 2012
2012 NWCA All-Academic
EVANSTON, Ill. – Two Northwestern wrestlers were honored as All-Academic award winners by the National Wrestling Coaches Association. The NWCA announced its list of academic honorees Tuesday and redshirt freshman Pierce Harger along with junior Levi Mele made the grade.
A first-year starter at 165 lbs., Harger had a noteworthy freshman campaign, finishing 22-14 overall and made his first trip to the NCAA championships. He had one of the more grueling schedules on the team, wrestling nine matches against ranked opponents prior to NCAA’s. Harger posted a 10-4 record in dual action, scoring 40 points for the Wildcats in their 11-4 record. An industrial engineering major, Harger also achieved Academic All-Big Ten status for the first time this season.
Mele is a two-time NWCA All-Academic honoree, also winning the award last season. He had his best year on the mat, going 31-8 as NU’s 125 lbs. starter, including a 13-2 mark in duals. Mele finished fourth at the 2012 Big Ten Championships, which gave him an automatic qualification for his second trip to NCAA’s. Mele is a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree as a social policy major and was Northwestern’s co-winner of the team’s highest individual GPA award in 2010-11.
Northwestern has had at least one NWCA All-Academic honoree in eight of the last nine seasons. The NWCA honored 87 individuals this season, including 27 from the Big Ten Conference. The list included five NCAA champions, three NCAA runner-ups, 23 All-Americans and 77 NCAA qualifiers.
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