BLACKSBURG - Ten Virginia Tech wrestlers will head to the campus of North Carolina this weekend to compete in Saturday’s 2012 ACC Championships in hopes of bringing home an individual title and advancing to the NCAA Championships.
The official championship website is here and it has links to directions, ticket information, times, Twitter feeds, the brackets and more. The brackets were released Wednesday and are linked to the right.
For the first time, the entire event will be broadcast on ESPN3, an internet-only production. Additionally, there will be live brackets updating within seconds of a match finishing for those who can’t get ESPN3. The link to that can be found on the championship website.
Admission to the event is $10 at the door or $5 in advance. Information on how to purchase tickets can be found on the championship website. Doors open at 10 a.m. and action gets underway at 11. The semifinals start at 1 p.m. and the consolation semifinals take place at 3:30. The consolation finals start at 5 p.m. and the finals begin at 7 p.m.
Tech has never won the ACC title, finishing second twice (2006 and 2011). Ten different Hokie wrestlers have won an ACC crown, but only Devin Carter has a chance to win another one this year as the others are either no longer on the team or are redshirting. Carter won the 133-pound title last year and will be the top seed again this year. Jon Bonilla-Bowman (2007; co) and Matt Epperly (2008) are the only Hokies to take home tournament Most Outstanding Wrestler honors.
Below is the lineup that will take the mat for the Hokies this weekend, with their seed before their name and their overall record and ACC dual meet record in parenthesis, followed by their first mtachup.
125: #6 seed Erik Spjut (25-11; 1-1) - vs. #3 Peter Terrezza (Duke)
133: #1 seed Devin Carter (28-3; 5-0) - BYE (semifinals vs. winner of #4 Brock LiVorio (NC)/#5 Brandon Gambucci (Duke)
141: #3 seed Zach Neibert (17-9; 3-2) - vs. #6 Frank Goodwin (MD)
149: #3 seed Nick Brascetta (6-3; 2-1) - vs. #6 Nick Heilmann (UNC)
157: #4 seed Cameron Hurd (11-12; 2-1) - vs. #5 Colton Palmer (NCSU)
165: #2 seed Pete Yates (20-5; 2-1) - BYE (semifinals vs. winner of #3 Nick Sulzer (VA)/#6 Ryan Harding Duke)
174: #3 seed Chris Moon (17-12; 3-2) - vs. #6 Roandy Roden (Duke)
184: #4 seed Angelo Malvestuto (21-11; 0-0) - vs. #5 Robert O’Neill (NCSU)
197: #3 seed Nick Vetterlein (24-9; 3-1) - vs. #6 Brian Self (Duke)
285: #2 seed Chris Penny (11-7; 5-0) - BYE (semifinals vs. winner of #3 Ethan Hayes (VA)/#6 Josh Davis (NCSU)
Each of these 10 men will be looking to advance to the NCAA Championships, held March 17-19 in St. Louis. To make it to the Big Dance, each must finish a certain place or higher at the ACCs to automatically qualify. If they don’t, they’ll be at the mercy of the selection committee, who will choose at-large selections. Below are the spots each wrestler must finish at or above to automatically qualify from the ACC.
125: 3rd *
* - The ACC was originally awarded four spots at this weight, but Tech’s Ty Mitch earned one of them. Since he is not wrestling at the Championships, the ACC loses this spot and it becomes a wild card slot to be filled after all of the conference tournaments are done.
For updates on Virginia Tech wrestling, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Wrestling).