Mar. 18, 1997
School-Record Seven Cavaliers Qualify for NCAA Wrestling Meet
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- The Cavaliers are sending seven
wrestlers to compete at the NCAA Division I Wrestling
Championships. This year's meet will take place at the University
of Northern Iowa this weekend. The first-round matches are on
Thursday, March 20, and the competition continues through
Saturday, March 22. The seven wrestlers is the largest Virginia
contingent to attend the championships in school history. Last
year Virginia sent five wrestlers to the NCAA meet. There have
been four All-Americans in Virginia history, the most recent
being Mike Krafchick in 1994 at 134 pounds.
Among the Cavaliers wrestling this weekend is sophomore Steve
Garland (Middletown, N.Y./Middletown) at 126 pounds, the ACC
Champion at the 126-pound weight class. Garland was named the
Outstanding Wrestler of the ACC Championships as he came back
from a three-point deficit in the final fifteen seconds of his
semifinal bout to take a 7-4 victory.
Senior captain Jason Mutarelli (Catasauqua, Pa./N. Catasauqua)
took second-place honors at ACC's at 134, losing to undefeated
and nationally-ranked Jim Guzzio from Maryland in the final
seconds. Mutarelli qualified for the NCAA Championships in 1995
before taking a red-shirt year in 1996.
Jim Harshaw (Cranberry Township, Pa./Seneca Valley), the
Outstanding Wrestler at the Virginia State Championships
following his title at 150 pounds, was the ACC Champion at that
weight class as well. Harshaw qualified for the NCAA
Championships last year as a freshman.
Alex Leykikh (West Hartford, Conn./Hall) finished fifth at the
Virginia State Wrestling Championships and was runner-up at ACC's
in the 158-pound weight class. This his his frist trip to NCAA's.
Freshman Martius Harding (Baltimore, Md./McDonogh) was the
champion at both the Virginia State Championships and the ACC at
177 pounds. Harding won both of his titles in overtime, claiming
the Virginia crown in overtime criteria. He defeated the
defending ACC Champion in the finals.
Craig Fenstermaker (Hilton Head, S.C./Northampton (Pa.) returns
to the NCAA's as well following his second-place finish at ACC"s
at 190. Last year as a freshman at the national meet, he wrestled
his nemesis Scott Stay from UNC and defeated him after losing
twice in the regular season.
Senior captain Zach Feldman (Dunwoody, Ga./Dunwoody) is also an
NCAA returnee. He took runner-up honors at the ACC meet for the
second year in a row.