Raleigh, NC – Many of the best collegiate wrestlers in America will be on competing this Saturday when NC State hosts the 63rd Annual Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestling Championship at newly-renovated Reynolds Coliseum in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Doors open Saturday at 10 a.m. with the Opening Round bouts scheduled for 11:03 a.m., followed by the Semifinals (1 p.m.), the Consolation Semifinals (3:30 p.m.), the Consolation Finals (5 p.m.) and the Championship Finals (7:03. p.m.).
Tickets at the door are priced at $7 for adults, $5 for youth (17 and under); children aged two and under are admitted free of charge. ACC students with valid IDs are also admitted free.
All bouts of the Championship will be streamed live on ACC Network Extra, which is available through the WatchESPN App. Shawn Kenney and Dean Linke are handling the play-by-play and Tim Foley and Rock Harrison providing the expert analysis.
During the preliminary rounds the action will be streamed live from both mats, moving to one mat for the finals on Saturday evening.
In all, 34 ACC wrestlers will be on hand who have been nationally ranked by the NCAA’s Coaches Rankings, and 16 of them have been ranked in the Top 10 of their respective weight classes with NC State’s Kevin Jack (Danbury, Connecticut) ranked second nationally at 141 and Virginia Tech’s Joey Dance (Christiansburg, Virginia) and Ty Walz (Cleveland, Ohio) ranks third nationally at 125 and 285 pounds, respectively.
Nine ACC wrestlers who have previously earned All-American honors will also be competing in the Championship, including Jack, Dance, Walz, North Carolina’s Joey Ward (141, Cincinnati, Ohio) and Ethan Ramos (174, Hawthorne, New Jersey), and Virginia Tech’s Solomon Chishko (149, Jeannette, Pennsylvania), Zach Epperly (174, Christiansburg, Virginia), Zack Zavatsky (184, Latrobe, Pennsylvania) and Jared Haught (197, Parkersburg, Virginia).
Five returning ACC champions from 2016 will be competing for their second straight titles in Dance, Jack, Ramos, Zavatsky and Virginia senior George DiCamillo (Highland Heights, Virginia) who is seeking to become the first Virginia and only the ninth ACC wrestler to win four ACC titles.
Nationally fourth-ranked Virginia Tech, the regular-season ACC champion, is the favorite to take team honors but will face a challenge from host NC State, the defending ACC Wrestling champion. The Wolfpack are ranked eighth nationally, while Pitt is ranked 23rd.
The Hokies will also be without long-time head coach Kevin Dresser and will be under the leadership of interim head coach Tony Robie. Only one team in the last eight years has won both the regular season championship and the overall championship in the same year (Virginia Tech, 2012).
Host NC State, coached by Pat Popolizio, will field two top-seeded wrestlers in the Championship in Jack and junior Michael Macchiavello at 184. The Wolfpack also has four wrestlers seeded second in the Championship in senior Sam Speno (149, Mount Kisco, New York), freshman Thomas Bullard (157, Lawrenceville, Georgia), Brian Hamann (165, Jackson, New Jersey) and Malik McDonald (197, Hope Mills, North Carolina).
Pitt, led by co-coaches Matt Kocher and Drew Headlee, has two top seeds in junior Dom Forys (133) and sophomore Te’Shan Campbell (165). The Panthers also feature heavyweight Ryan Solomon, who is ranked 15th nationally and is 4-1 against ACC competition with a win over fifth-ranked Jacob Kasper of Duke.
Virginia, coached by Steve Garland, is led by senior DiCamillo, who is seeking to become only the ninth wrestler in ACC history to win four ACC individual titles. DiCamillo, who is the second seed at 141 pounds, previously won ACC titles at 133 pounds in 2013, 2015 and 2016. DiCamillo is one of three second seeds for the Cavaliers as freshman Jack Mueller (125, Dallas, Texas) and redshirt senior Will Mason (133, Virginia Beach, Virginia) are also seeded second in their weight classes. Mueller ranks second nationally in technical falls, having recorded 10 of his 22 (22-3) wins this year by technical fall.
North Carolina, coached by Coleman Scott, features a lineup led by Ward and Ramos. Both wrestlers are in two of the more competitive weight classes. Ward, who is ranked seventh nationally, will face Jack, ranked second nationally, and DiCamillo, ranked sixth. Ramos, ranked seventh nationally, will compete against Tech’s Epperly, who is ranked fourth.
Duke, coached by Glen Lanham, is led by redshirt junior Kasper (285, Lexington, Ohio), who is the No. 2 seed and at 285. Kasper, who is 26-2 overall on the year and is ranked fifth nationally, holds a win over the top heavyweight seed, Virginia Tech’s Walz.
Championship Page – http://theacc.co/wreschamp
Brackets – http://theacc.co/wres17brackets
Fan Guide – http://theacc.co/wres17fanguide
ACC Network Extra (Coverage begins at 11 am)
Mat 1: http://es.pn/2mhUngU
Mat 2: http://es.pn/2mcwxq3