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It was a tough day for the top seeded wrestlers at the NCAA Division III Wrestling Championships on Friday, including Lakeland senior Paul Hartt.
Hartt, the No. 3 seed in the 197-pound division, was eliminated, after he won his opener, then suffered a pair of losses later in the day in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He finishes the season with a remarkable 37-3 record.
The Port Charlotte, Fla., native kicked off his trip to nationals on a positive note by pinning Eric Vincent of Merchant Marine Academy in 6:00 in the first round (pictured here).
However, Hartt suffered just his second loss of the season in the quarterfinals, falling to No. 6 seed Matt Miller of Lycoming, 6-1, which dropped him into the third-place bracket.
Friday night, Hartt lost a 10-4 decision to No. 5 seed Ryan Fogliano of Heidelberg, eliminating him from the tournament.
"He got caught behind in the first two periods of both of the matches he lost," said head coach Pete Rogers. "At this level, when you get that far behind, it's hard to come back. I just feel bad for him because he's worked so hard and has done all of the right things. I know he wanted more."Rogers also noted that four out of the eight wrestlers remaining in the competition in Hartt's weight class are wrestlers he has beaten this season, including No. 4 Craig Bolig of UW-Stevens Point and No. 7 Josh Holforty of UW-Eau Claire.
To view the complete results from day one of the 2008 Division III wrestling championships, please click here.