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Pelton to wrestle at Indiana

Norwalk Reflector Staff • Oct 29, 2015 at 11:31 AM

BELLEVUE - In four years of wrestling at Bellevue High School, Jeffrey Pelton racked up quite an impressive resume.

He has 150 wins, 79 pins, four sectional titles, three Northwest District titles, three conference titles, two state runner-ups, and a state championship to his credit.

So impressive is his resume, in fact, that several collegiate wrestling programs came calling with full athletic scholarships in hopes of gaining his services.

In the end, the Redmen senior decided he will ply his trade at Indiana University this fall.

"It's a very nice campus," Pelton said of the Bloomington-based school. "The program was ranked 14th in the country this year. They have a good group of lightweight guys, and a good lightweight coach."

The Hoosiers wrestling program boasts All- Americans at the 125, 133, and 149-pound levels.

Pelton is expected to gain weight and wrestle at 141 pounds.

"They want me to wrestle at 141," he said. "If I'm the starting man, then I'll start as a freshman. If not, I'll redshirt. But, I think I'll be ready to go."

Bellevue wrestling coach Jim DePolo shares the same excitement as his accomplished scrapper.

"We heard about him in the seventh grade, so we knew we had a good one coming" said DePolo. "They said he was a little guy with no quit."

"He's a great competitor, very serious," DePolo said of Pelton's work ethic. "He trained year-round, he's a hard working kid, a good captain and a good leader."

"We're real happy for him," DePolo said. "In the end, I think the deciding factor was the Big 10."

Pelton first started appearing on the collegiate radars in his junior season, when he compiled a 41-2 record wrestling at 119 pounds and was a runner-up at the state finals. His senior year, he was 41-1 with 26 pins while wrestling at 135, and captured his state championship.

During the process, Pelton broke the school records for career and single-season victories, and career and single-season pins.

And in came more offers. Cleveland State was first, and then Northern Illinois, followed by Ohio State and Michigan.

It was at Nationals, when Pelton defeated a four-time state champion from New Mexico, when Pelton had the full attention of the Hoosiers.

The rest is history.

But perhaps the best is yet to come.

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