SALEM, Va. - The 14th-ranked Virginia Tech wrestling squad opened up the 2011-12 season with a 31-12 victory over Campbell Saturday evening at the Salem Civic Center. Three Hokies, Devin Carter, Jesse Dong and Pete Yates, picked up pins en route to the win.
Erik Spjut opened up the action at 125 pounds and earned a 5-4 decision with a late takedown against Josh Fisher to earn the win. Sixth-ranked Devin Carter made quick work of Tanner Bidelspach at 133 pounds as he scored with two early takedowns and earned a pin at 1:39 to put the Hokies up 9-0.
Campbell got on the board at 141 pounds as Joey Rizzolino defeated freshman Jordan O'Donnell by decision, 6-5. O’Donnell was bumping up a class to help the team out and will be back at 133 pounds Sunday. The Fighting Camels picked up another decision at 149 pounds as Mark Hartenstine cut the Hokie lead to 9-6 by defeating Nick Murray, 5-1.
No. 7 Jesse Dong dominated Paul Duggan at 157 pounds with two takedowns and two sets of back points before scoring a pin at 2:49 to make to the score 15-6 in favor of Tech. At 165 pounds, 16th-ranked Pete Yates made it back-to-back pins for the Hokies with a fall at 2:13 over Nick Rex.
James Cook of Campbell pinned Chris Moon in 4:22 at 174 pounds, cutting the Tech lead to 21-12. The Hokies’ John Dickson scored a 7-3 decision over John Merickel, sealing the bout with a takedown with under 15 seconds left in the third period.
At 197 pounds, Nick Vetterlein rallied from a 5-0 deficit to defeat John Weakley, 8-5, scoring eight points in the final period on a reversal, a two-point near fall and four penalty points that were awarded for either technical violation, stalling or fleeing the mat by the Campbell man. No. 19 David Marone cruised to a 12-4 major decision over Joe Nolan at 285 pounds, making the final score 31-12.
Tech, ranked 14th in the NWCA/USA Today Coaches’ Poll is now 1-0 while Campbell drops to 1-2.
The entire Tech roster will be back in action on Sunday at the Hokie Open at the Salem Civic Center. For updates throughout the day, go to the tournament’s website, hokieopen.com.
#14 Virginia Tech (1-0) 31, Campbell (1-2) 12
125: Erik Spjut (VT) dec. Josh Fisher, 5-4
133: #6 Devin Carter (VT) fall Tanner Bidelspach, 1:39
141: Joey Rizzolino (CU) dec. Jordan O'Donnell, 6-5
149: Mark Hartenstine (CU) dec. Nick Murray, 5-1
157: #7 Jesse Dong (VT) fall Paul Duggan, 2:49
165: #16 Pete Yates (VT) fall Nick Rex, 2:13
174: James Cook (CU) fall Chris Moon, 4:22
184: John Dickson (VT) dec. John Merickel, 7-3
197: Nick Vetterlein (VT) dec. John Weakley, 8-5
285: #19 David Marone (VT) maj. dec. Joe Nolan, 12-4
For updates on Virginia Tech wrestling, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Wrestling).