November 28, 2012
Hokies head to Pennsylvania for big weekend
Two more ranked foes on the docket

BLACKSBURG - It will be a blast from the past and a peek into the future this weekend for the 11th-ranked Virginia Tech wrestling team as it heads to Pennsylvania for a pair of dual meets against nationally ranked opponents. On Friday, the Hokies will take on 18th-ranked Pittsburgh in a preview of a future ACC match as the Panthers are joining the conference next year. On Sunday, Tech will take on former Eastern Wrestling League rival and 20th-ranked Edinboro. Tech is currently 3-1 and with these two matches, it will mean five of its first six matches will have come against nationally ranked opponents.

Pittsburgh will enter Friday’s night’s match (7 PM, Fitzgerald Fieldhouse) at 0-2, but features five ranked wrestlers, most of them at the bottom of its lineup. At 133 pounds, Pittsburgh features No. 7 Shelton Mack and has No. 11 Tyler Wilps at 165 pounds. The final three weight classes all have ranked wrestlers: No. 14 Max Thomusseit at 184 pounds, No. 2 Matt Wilps at 197 pounds and No. 9 9 Zac Thomusseit at heavyweight. Tech has had little success against the Panthers, posting an 0-9 all-time record against them, many of which came when Tech was in the EWL.

The match will be broadcast live through Pittsburgh’s website with a link here, but it’s a broadcast that fans will have to pay for.

Tech and Pittsburgh have both wrestled Ohio State early this season in dual matches with both losing - Tech 23-10 to the Buckeyes and Pitt losing 26-13. Here’s how the matches went:

125: #9 Jarrod Garnett (VT) maj. dec. #13 Nikko Triggas (OSU), 10-2; #8 Nikko Triggas (OSU) pins Godwin Nyama (P)
133: #1 Logan Steiber (OSU) tech fall Erik Spjut (VT), 19-4; #1 Logan Stieber (OSU) pins No. 7 Shelton Mack (P)
141: #3 Hunter Steiber (OSU) dec. #11 Zach Neibert, 8-5; #4 Hunter Stieber (OSU) maj. dec. Travis Shaffer (P), 10-2
149: #18 Nick Brascetta (VT) dec. #8 Cam Tessari (OSU), 5-3; #7 Cam Tessari (OSU) maj. dec. Donnie Tasser (P), 11-3
157: #13 Josh Demas (OSU) dec. Lex Ozias (VT), 3-2; #16 Josh Demas (OSU) dec. Troy Reaghard (P), 3-1
165: #4 Pete Yates (VT) dec. Mark Martin (OSU), 7-1; #16 Tyler Wilps (P) dec. Mark Martin (OSU), 5-1
174: #3 Nick Heflin (OSU) dec. Austin Gabel (VT), 2-1 (TB); #2 Nick Heflin (OSU) dec. Nick Bonaccorsi (P), 4-3
184: Kenny Courts (OSU) dec. Nick Vetterlein (VT), 11-6; #14 Max Thomusseit (P) dec. Kenny Curtis (OSU), 3-2
197: #14 C.J. Magrum (OSU) dec. Derrick Borlie (VT), 7-4; #2 Matt Wilps maj. dec. C.J. Magrum (OSU), 13-3
285: #15 Peter Capone (OSU) dec. #20 David Marone (VT), 6-3; #8 Zac Thomusseit (P) dec. #19 Peter Capone (OSU), 5-1

On Sunday, Tech will take on Edinboro, who is 0-0 but wrestles Michigan State on Friday. That match kicks off at 1 p.m. inside McComb Fieldhouse. Tech is just 2-6-1 all-time against the Scots, but have won the last two dual matches against them, 27-6 in 2010 at the Hershey Duals and 27-15 a year earlier at the Virginia Duals. Edinboro features five ranked wrestlers, three at weight classes where Tech has wrestlers ranked. At 133 pounds, the Scots featured No. 4 A.J. Schopp and have the fourth-ranked Mitchell Port at 141 pounds. Dave Habat is ranked 14th at 149 pounds and Johnny Greisheimer is 13th at 165 pounds. Finally, at heavyweight, Ernest James is ranked 16th. It will also be a homecoming for two of Tech's coaches as associate head coach Tony Robie and volunteer assistant coach Eric Morrill both wrestled for the Scots. Robie was a three-time Eastern Wrestling League Champion and a three-time Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) champion who went 126-23 in his career while Morrill was a three-time NCAA National qualifier who posted a 90-45 record for his career.

Three Hokies will wrestle ranked guys both nights: unranked Erik Spjut at 133 pounds against seventh-ranked Mack on Friday and fourth-ranked Schopp on Sunday; Pete Yates, ranked No. 4 at 165 pounds against No. 11 Tyler Wilps on Friday and No. 13 Greisheimer on Sunday; and unranked David Marone at heavyweight against No. 9 Zac Thomusseit on Friday and No. 16 James on Sunday. Additionally, 10th-ranked Zach Neibert at 141 pounds takes No. 4 Port on Sunday, 10th-ranked Nick Brascetta at 149 pounds takes on No. 14 Habat on Sunday, unranked Austin Gabel at 184 pounds has No. 14 Max Thomusseit on Friday and unranked Derrick Borlie at 197 pounds has No. 2 Matt Wilps on Friday.

Below are the probable lineups for all three teams, as submitted by the respective coaching staffs. All rankings used are from Amateur Wrestling News.

#11 Virginia Tech (3-1)
125: #7 Jarrod Garnett (6-1)
133: Erik Spjut (5-3)
141: #10 Zach Neibert (6-2)
149: #10 Nick Brascetta (7-1)
157: #8 Jesse Dong (2-0)
165: #4 Pete Yates (8-0)
174: Austin Gabel (5-3)
184: Nick Vetterlein (6-3)
197: Derrick Borlie (6-2)
285: David Marone (1-2)

#18 Pittsburgh (0-2)
125: Godwin Nyama (0-2) OR Derrick Nelson (4-2)
133: #7 Shelton Mack (5-2)
141: Travis Shaffer (0-2) OR Ty Lydic (9-1)
149: Donnie Tasser (5-2)
157: Troy Reaghard (5-4)
165: #11 Tyler Wilps (7-0)
174: Nick Bonaccorsi (5-2) OR P.J. Tasser (4-2)
184: #14 Max Thomusseit (6-0)
197: #2 Matt Wilps (3-0)
285: #9 Zac Thomusseit (7-0)

#20 Edinboro (0-0)
125: Kory Mines (5-3)
133: #4 A.J. Schopp (4-0)
141: #4 Mitchell Port (4-1)
149: #14 Dave Habat (6-2)
157: Michael DePalma (9-1)
165: #13 Johnny Greisheimer (6-2)
174: Patrick Jennings (8-4)
184: Vince Pickett (6-3)
197: Warren Bosch (4-3)
285: #16 Ernest James (5-1)

Additionally, several wrestlers are scheduled to head to the campus of Penn State for the Nittany Lion Open on Sunday. They are:

133: Tanner Conkwright
141: Devin Carter (unattached)
149: Matt Stephens (unattached)
149: Chad Strube (unattached)
157: David Bergida (unattached)
157: Sal Mastriani (unattached)
157: Lex Ozias
165: Issah Meade (unattached)
165: Chris Moon (unattached)
165: Brooks Morrison (unattached)
174: Huston Evans
184: John Dickson (unattached)
184: Sam Law (unattached)
197: Darren Hankins
197: Bobby Lavelle
285: Dan Garwood
285: Chris Penny (unattached)
285: Ty Walz (unattached)

For updates on Virginia Tech wrestling, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Wrestling).

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