- The Virginia wrestling team will compete in the Virginia Duals this weekend in Hampton, Va., starting with a matchup against Buffalo. The Cavaliers and Bulls will square off for the first time in program history at 11 a.m. Friday at the Hampton Coliseum. Virginia returns to the mat at 3 p.m. to wrestle either No. 15 Michigan or Liberty. The double-elimination competition then continues all day Saturday.
TheMat.com/USA Wrestling will provide up to four feeds of live video coverage throughout the Virginia Duals. Wrestling coverage will begin via Ustream.tv, the Virginia Duals site and TheMat.com at 9 a.m. Friday with two bouts from the National College Division and two from the National High School Division. Live results and brackets also can be found at VirginiaDuals.com.
Virginia is seeded sixth in the college tournament bracket. In addition to the aforementioned teams, Bucknell, Wyoming, No. 9 Lehigh and UNC Greensboro also will compete on the Cavaliers' side of the bracket. The other bracket consists of No. 2 Penn State, VMI, Old Dominion, Edinboro, No. 25 Arizona State, Chattanooga, Rider and No. 23 Kent State.
Penn State is the top seed in the event, followed by Lehigh, Michigan, Kent State, Arizona State, Virginia, Wyoming and Edinboro.
Unranked this for the first time during the 2010-11 season, Virginia is 8-2 in duals this season, including a trio of wins over teams in the Virginia Duals field - Rider, then-No. 14 Kent State and Edinboro. UVa also has suffered a loss to then-No. 11 Lehigh. UVa will be wrestling Buffalo for the first time in program history.
The Cavaliers boast a quartet of ranked wrestlers, according to InterMat - No. 20 Matt Snyder (R-So., Lewistown, Pa.) at 125, No. 4 Chris Henrich (Sr., Lansdale, Pa.) at 174, No. 18 Jon Fausey (R-Fr., Dalmatia, Pa.) at 184 and No. 18 Mike Salopek (R-So., North Huntingdon, Pa.) at 197. Heavyweight Jack Danilkowicz (Sr., Green Oaks, Ill.) also is ranked 20th nationally by WIN Magazine, while the injured Nick Nelson (R-Jr., Pittsburgh, Pa.) is 13th at 141 pounds according to WIN.
Henrich will be in pursuit of the Virginia career wins record this weekend. He enters the competition with 115 career victories - one shy of the UVa record of 116, set by Mike Krafchick from 1991-95. Virginia's first-ever two-time All-American, Henrich owns a career record of 115-17.
Virginia is coming off a ninth-place showing at the Southern Scuffle last week. Henrich led the Cavaliers with a second-place finish at 174. For his efforts, he was named the ACC Wrestler of the Week. Fausey nabbed sixth place finish at 184, while Gus Sako (Fr., Cleveland, Ohio) took eighth place at 141.
Buffalo has one wrestler among the InterMat individual rankings - Desi Green, who is No. 19 at 149. Michigan has four individuals in the InterMat rankings - Zac Stevens (No. 18 at 133), Kellen Russell (No. 1 at 141), Anthony Biondo (No. 15 at 197) and Ben Apland (No. 8 at 285). Overall, U-M has seven wrestlers ranked in national polls. Liberty does not have a wrestler who currently is ranked.
Buffalo is 4-2 in dual action this year and has won three straight. The Bulls are coming off a 24-12 win over Binghamton, which was receiving votes in the most recent NWCA coaches poll. Kevin Smith (133 pounds) owns a team-high 21 wins for Buffalo.
Michigan is 1-1 in duals this year, with a 17-15 win over then-No. 14 Pittsburgh and a 25-6 loss at then-No. 13 Lehigh. The Wolverines are ranked 15th this week according to the National Wrestling Coaches Association and as high as 11th nationally by InterMat. The Cavaliers earned a pair of wins over the Wolverines last season at the Virginia Duals, winning 23-10 in the second round and 19-13 in the seventh-place match. UVa owns a 2-1 series edge.
Liberty is 6-3 in dual action this year. The Flames already own a win at Maryland (21-17) this season. Redshirt junior Scott Clymer (149 pounds) leads the team with 15 victories. The teams have met just once previously - a 31-9 UVa win to open the 2006-07 season.
Virginia took seventh place last year at the Virginia Duals, marking UVa's best finish ever at the prestigious event. The Cavaliers defeated Michigan twice as well as Old Dominion (21-15). UVa's losses came to Oklahoma (21-13) and Virginia Tech (21-18).
Following competition this weekend the Cavaliers return home next weekend for three matches at Memorial Gymnasium. Saturday (Jan. 15) the Cavaliers open ACC action at 1 p.m. against NC State. UVa follows that up with a tri-match on Sunday (Jan. 16), competing against No. 22 Penn at 2:30 p.m. and VMI at 4 p.m. The Quakers and Keydets begin the competition Sunday with a 1 p.m. dual.
Virginia Duals - Virginia Probable Lineup
125: No. 20 Matt Snyder
133: Joe Spisak
141: Gus Sako
149: Derek Valenti
157: Shawn Harris
165: Conner Miller
174: No. 4 Chris Henrich
184: No. 18 Jon Fausey
197: No. 18 Mike Salopek
285: Jack Danilkowicz
rankings are according to InterMat