Panthers Come Up Short in Championships


Photo courtesy of the Athletic Department

Rayshawn Dixon, junior, bends his opponent on the mat.

Jazmin Scarberry

The 2023 NCAA Division III Wrestling Championships was hosted in Roanoke on Friday, March 10 by Ferrum College at the Berglund Center. Panthers, Braden Homsey senior, and Rayshawn Dixon, junior, both qualified and competed in the tournament. 

For the 197-pound weight class, Homsey took a loss by decision in his opening match against Dylan Wellbaum of Adrian College. He later won by forfeit over Gage Linahon from Central College in the wrestle-back portion of the bracket. Homsey also qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 2020, although he was unable to compete due to COVID cancellations protocol. 

Dixon seeded sixth in the 285 class, brought back a win over Darryl Aiello from the University of Dubuque by fall in his opening match. Dixon later lost by fall in the quarterfinal round to Kaleb Reeves of Coe College, the number three seed. He then lost to the University of Southern Maine’s Jake Peavey in an elimination match with a score of 9-8. This was Dixon’s first NCAA National Tournament appearance. 

Overall, both wrestlers were eliminated from the competition on Friday. The Panthers ended tied for 41st place as a team in a group of 71 teams. This championship marked the second time the event has been hosted by Ferrum in the past five years.