March 19, 2014
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Eight Virginia wrestlers will compete in college wrestling's crowning event, the NCAA Championships, Thursday through Saturday in Oklahoma City at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The competition begins Thursday at noon ET with pigtail matches and the first round.
ESPN will provide unprecedented coverage of the 2014 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. All six sessions of the event will air live on ESPNU or ESPN, while ESPN3 will have live feeds of every mat, starting with separate feeds from all eight mats in the first three sessions.
ESPN will televise the semifinals on Friday night and the finals on Saturday night, while ESPNU will have coverage of the Thursday sessions, quarterfinals and medal round.
A link to live brackets also will be available at VirginiaSports.com, while live updates will be provided on the Virginia Wrestling Twitter account, @UVaWrestling.
2014 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships
Schedule of Events - All Times Eastern
Thursday (March 20)
First Session - Noon (ESPNU/ESPN3)
Pigtails & First Round
Second Session - 7 p.m. (ESPNU/ESPN3)
Wrestleback Pigtails, Wrestleback First Round & Second Round
Friday (March 21)
Third Session - 11 a.m. (ESPNU/ESPN3)
Quarterfinals & Wrestleback Second and Third Rounds
Fourth Session - 8 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN3)
Semifinals & Wrestleback Fourth and Fifth Rounds
Saturday (March 22)
Fifth Session - 11 a.m. (ESPNU/ESPN3)
Wrestleback Semifinals & Third, Fifth and Seventh-Place Rounds
Sixth Session - 8 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN3)
2014 Virginia NCAA Qualifiers
Weight: Seed/Name (Overall Record)
125: Nick Herrmann (17-10)
141: No. 16 Joe Spisak (19-12)
149: No. 7 Gus Sako (18-3)
157: No. 10 Blaise Butler (20-6)
165: No. 3 Nick Sulzer (32-1)
174: No. 11 Stephen Doty (27-8)
184: Jon Fausey (15-9)
197: Zach Nye (20-9)
Virginia at the NCAA Championships
Virginia is sending eight wrestlers to the NCAA Championships, its second most in program history. This marks the sixth straight year that at least six UVa wrestlers have qualified for NCAAs.
UVa owns four straight top-30 team finishes (15th in 2010, t23rd in 2011, t28th in 2012, 21st in 2013). Virginia's best finish at NCAAs was a 10th-place tie in 1957.
This marks the 33rd year Virginia has had at least one qualifier at NCAAs.
Record Five Cavaliers Seeded
UVa has a program-record five wrestlers seeded this year. The Cavaliers had four seeded wrestlers in 2013.
The seeds: Nick Sulzer (No. 3 at 165), Gus Sako (No. 7 at 149), Blaise Butler (No. 11 at 157), Stephen Doty (No. 11 at 174) and Joe Spisak (No. 16 at 141).
Cavaliers Boast 15 All-Americans in Program History
Virginia has had 15 All-Americans in its program history, with eight coming in the last 10 years. UVa's best individual finish is second by heavyweight Henry Jordan in 1957 and current UVa head coach Steve Garland (125 pounds) in 2000.
Two Virginia wrestlers earned All-America honors in 2013 - Jedd Moore (157) and Nick Sulzer (165); Sulzer will wrestle again at 165 this year.
Sulzer Aims for Second Podium Finish
Junior Nick Sulzer is aiming to become the second two-time All-American in Virginia history. An eighth-place finisher at 165 last year, Sulzer is seeded third this year. Chris Henrich is the only Cavalier to stand on the podium multiple times at NCAAs. He finished seventh in 2009, third in 2010, sixth in 2011 - each at 174 pounds.
Veterans Bolster Virginia Lineup
Virginia's lineup is bolstered by five upperclassmen who have NCAA championship experience. Nick Sulzer, Jon Fausey, Stephen Doty, Gus Sako and Joe Spisak all have experience at the event.
Sulzer was an All-American at 165 last year; Fausey was the 2012 ACC champion at 184 and is a four-time NCAA qualifier. Spisak (2011, 2013), Sako (2012) and Doty (2013) all are former NCAA qualifiers.
Fausey Now a Four-Time Qualifier
Jon Fausey is just the sixth four-time NCAA qualifier in program history. He qualified at 184 in 2011, 2012 and 2014 and was a 174 qualifier last year. Fausey needs two wins to reach 100 career and move into ninth in UVa history.