GREENSBORO, N.C. – Virginia Tech sophomore Brian Stephens has been named the Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestler of the Week after an unbeaten showing in the ACC Challenge that included wins over two higher nationally-ranked opponents.
The 19th-ranked Stephens went 3-0 in the Sunday’s event, which was hosted by North Carolina. The Piqua, Ohio, native first upset No. 16 Cole Schmitt of Wisconsin 7-5, and then upset No. 17 Ivan Lopouchanski of UNC Greensboro, also by a 7-5 score. Stephens finished the day with a 10-4 win over Chattanooga's Dean Pavlou to improve to 10-2 on the season.
Stephens’ efforts helped the 15th-ranked Hokies to a 2-1 team record in the Challenge. Virginia Tech suffered a 24-19 loss to fourth-ranked Wisconsin, but bounced back to defeat UNCG, 17-15, and Chattanooga, 25-12.
With the wins, Stephens moved up to 15th at 149 pounds. The team moved up to 12th in the NWCA/USA Today Division I Coaches Poll. Tech will have the Thanksgiving weekend off before taking the starters to the Las Vegas Open and the rest of the team to the Penn State Open.
For updates on Virginia Tech wrestling, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Wrestling).