Only a few days after Louis Newell of Seneca Valley announced he was committed to Pitt, Luke Kemerer (Hempfield) and Cole Matthews (Reynolds) followed suit. The two Pennsylvania standouts broadcasted their intentions to wrestle for the Panthers within minutes of each other on Twitter. Matthews (right) even shared this picture of the two of them, on what appears to be their recruiting trip.
Matthews won a Pennsylvania State title his freshman year, finishing the season 43-6. He followed this performance with a 3rd and 2nd place finish at the state tournament in his sophomore and junior years, bringing his career total to 130-13 per PA-Wrestling.com. Cole lost in the state finals last year to Iowa commit Max Murin in a thrilling 3-2 decision that went to the ultimate tiebreaker. He should be the favorite to win it this year. He is also a two time Ironman and Powerade finalist, winning his first Powerade title last year. He will be a big part of Pitt’s success moving forward.
Kemerer has also had a very successful high school career thus far boasting 6th and 3rd place finishes at states with a 4th place at Powerade last year and a career record of 107-20. He competes at the same weight class as Matthews, 138 pounds, but Hempfield classifies as AAA whereas Reynolds is AA. He will also be considered a favorite to bring home gold from Hershey in his senior season.
As mentioned earlier, the two commits on Sunday came just four days after Louis Newell. Not to be outdone, Newell has also racked up some impressive accolades, running up a career mark of 115-19 with three state medals including 2nd place as a sophomore and junior. Newell lost to North Hills freshman Sam Hillegas in the state finals last year at 113, and it remains to be seen if either will move up to 120 this year.
All three of the recent Pitt commits are lightweights. With Micky Phillippi currently sitting the year out due to transfer rules, Pitt could roll out this lineup for the next 3-4 years depending on redshirts:
- 125: Louis Newell
- 133: Micky Phillippi
- 141: Luke Kemerer
- 149: Cole Matthews
It’s hard to predict who will be bigger between Matthews and Kemerer as they are currently the same weight, but one of them will definitely go up. And with Rahmani, Wentzel, Bell, Bonaccorsi, and Stout all having 3-4 years of eligibility left, the back half of Pitt’s lineup isn’t looking too shabby either. The only major hole now (after Solomon graduates), is heavyweight.
Since taking over, Head Coach Keith Gavin has brought in Phillippi and Stout as transfers, and gotten commits from Newell, Kemerer, and Matthews. It’s an exciting time for Pitt wrestling, and it’s only getting started.