No. 9 Hokies looks to defend Virginia Duals title this weekend

BLACKSBURG – No. 9 Virginia Tech will head to the Tidewater region this weekend as they look to defend their title at the 38th Annual Virginia Duals in Hampton, Virginia. The Hokies will open with Campbell at 11 a.m. and Old Dominion at 1 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 12.

All matches from the Virginia Duals will be streamed live on TrackWrestling.com with a subscription. Fans can also follow along on Twitter, @HokiesWrestling.

Tech (5-1) returns to the mat in dual meet action for the first time since a 30-6 win over West Virginia at Cassell Coliseum on December 22.

Individually over the break, the Hokies had two wrestlers place at the Southern Scuffle wrestling unattached. Freshman Mekhi Lewis placed fourth at 165 pounds and classmate Stanley Smeltzer finished eighth at 184. Redshirt junior Ryan Blees is also coming off of a strong weekend at the Franklin & Marshall Open where he went 6-0 and claimed the 149-pound title.

SCOUTING THE FIELD
• The Hokies are 11-2 all-time vs. Campbell and last met the Camels in 2013 when Tech claimed a 42-4 victory in Buies Creek, North Carolina.
• Old Dominion leads the all-time series with the Hokies, 22-12, in a series that dates back to 1966.
• The last meeting between the two programs came at the 2015 Virginia Duals when the No. 5 Hokies got by No. 24 ODU, 19-15, to reach the finals.

RANKINGS UPDATE
• The Hokies saw little movement in the individual and team rankings during an idle holiday season. Tech went up a spot in the NWCA Coaches Poll to No. 9 after Minnesota fell out of the top 10.
• Entering this weekend, Tech still has six wrestlers ranked in their respective weight classes: No. 14 Dennis Gustafson at 133, No. 11 Solomon Chishko at 149, No. 4 David McFadden at 165, No. 8 Zack Zavatsky at 184, No. 2 Jared Haught at 197 and No. 18 Andrew Dunn at 285.

HOKIES HISTORY AT THE VIRGINIA DUALS
• Virginia Tech has won three of the last four Virginia Duals after blitzing through the tournament last season.
• The Hokies defeated Kent State and Lock Haven on the first day before defeating North Dakota State and No. 15 Oklahoma in the final, 24-10.

For updates on Virginia Tech wrestling, follow the Hokies on Twitter