SOU's Platt captures title as Raiders take second

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla — Southern Oregon sophomore Chris Platt scored an individual title Saturday at the NAIA national wrestling championships, helping the Raiders place second.

Lindenwood won the team crown with 167 points. SOU finished with 125.5, and its coach, Mike Ritchey, was named national coach of the year.

Platt jumped out to a 5-0 lead before defeating Montana State-Northern's Evan Hinebauch, 6-2, at 184 pounds.

Platt, from Eagle Point, becomes the 23rd national champion at SOU and the first since 2004. Platt outscored his opponents 32-7 and recorded a pin during his run to the crown. He finished the season with a 19-4 record and six pins.

"He came to wrestle this weekend and it started from the get-go," said Raider coach Mike Ritchey. "He plowed along, and next thing you know, he's in the finals and wins a national championship. He came out (in the finals) and took a shot with a double-leg (takedown) to get up early, and that was huge. He's tough to score on."

Brothers Mitchell and Trevor Lofstedt from Roseburg each came away with second place.

Mitchell Lofstedt dropped the 125-pound match 11-2 to Montana State-Northern's Corey Borges, ending his freshman season 37-10 with nine falls.

Trevor Lofstedt fell in the 133-pound title match 19-9 to Lindenwood's Ray Stephens. The senior leaves SOU as just the fourth four-time All-American in school history.

"That was a tough draw to go up against two defending national champions," Ritchey said of the Lofstedt brothers. "Mitchell put this tournament on notice that he's the 125-pounder of the future.

"Trevor leaves as one of the best winning wrestlers we've had. He just knows how to win matches and sticks to his game plan."

Ritchey led the Raiders to an 18-1 dual-match record and the national dual-meet championship in addition to being runner-up here.

"This is one of those things that you feel great about being a part of," Ritchey said. "Even though we didn't win this tournament, we feel good about job we did. I'm still happy with second."

SOU's Barry Johnson (141) brought home a third place with a pair of victories Saturday. Johnson scored a pin in the consolation semifinals and then defeated Grand View's Jon Henslee 9-5 in the third-place match.

Seth Roy of the Raiders finished fourth at 149. Roy defeated Lindenwood's Ryan Moyter 3-1 in overtime before falling to Notre Dame College's Jeffrey Pelton 6-0 in the third-place match.

Tommie Hooper and John Bates each finished fifth for SOU after falling in their consolation semifinal matches.

Hooper scored a major decision over Oklahoma City's Nik Turner 10-2 in the fifth-place match at 157. Bates also scored a major decision with a 12-4 victory over Corey Johnson of Oklahoma City.

The Raiders had seven All-Americans.

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