original photo courtesy of Cam Kramer
This week’s college wrestler of the week is a two-time All-American who has decided to move up a weight class to 141 for his senior season. While his height may lead some to think that 133 is a more ideal weight for him, Luke proved otherwise. In his first tournament at the new weight class since his freshman season of 2016-17, Pletcher came away with a title at the Michigan State Open. Not only did Pletcher win the 141 lb championship, but more importantly, was who he beat. In the championship match, Luke knocked off the top-ranked wrestler in the nation, Dom Demas (Oklahoma). Demas was the highest returning placewinner at the weight (4th), while Luke entered the match ranked third. Pletcher had also finished fourth in the nation in 2019, though he did so down at 133 lbs. Both wrestlers finished regulation with an escape point to their credit. After a scoreless sudden victory period, the match went to tiebreakers. Luke was able to earn another escape while holding Demas down for the entirety of the 30 second period. For the rest of the tournament, Pletcher was able to notch a pair of wins by major decision and another two by fall. The second of the two majors came in the semifinals against two-time national qualifier Dylan Duncan (Illinois). The two met last season at 133 and Ducan held Pletcher to a one-point decision, at 3-2. This year Pletcher widen the gap to 15-5.
The schedule in the immediate future does not get any easier for Pletcher. On Sunday, Stanford will travel to Columbus to meet the Buckeyes. The Cardinal feature one of the top redshirt freshmen in the nation, Real Woods, currently ranked 15th in the country and fresh off a title at The Battle of The Citadel.