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    NC State Wrestling Travels To Chapel Hill To Take On Arch-Rival North Carolina
     
    Senior 165-pounder Dustin Kawa returns to the lineup Wednesday against North Carolina for the first time since early December.
    Senior 165-pounder Dustin Kawa returns to the lineup Wednesday against North Carolina for the first time since early December.
     

    Jan. 13, 2004

    RALEIGH, N.C. - The preseason tournaments are over, and the dual-match season is underway in college wrestling, meaning the season is now heating up for real. For NC State, that means the start of the Atlantic Coast Conference season with a showdown on Wednesday night in Chapel Hill against North Carolina. The match will begin at 7:30.

    The Wolfpack currently is 2-2 in dual matches this season following a 1-2 showing at the annual NC State Duals this past Saturday at Reynolds Coliseum. But the bout with the Tar Heels will mark the first time in nearly two months that the Wolfpack will have a relatively healthy lineup on the mat. The Wolfpack wrestled at the Southern Scuffle December 28-29 without the services of senior 149-pounder Jake Giamoni, senior 157-pounder Scott Garren and senior 165-pounder Dustin Kawa, and was without Kawa this past weekend.

    Those three comprise the heart of the NC State lineup, and all three will be back for the match against the Tar Heels. And how much do Giamoni, Garren and Kawa mean to the Wolfpack against UNC? The three of them are a combined 19-4 against Tar Heel wrestlers in their careers, 14-1 the last two seasons. Garren (8-0) has never lost a bout to a North Carolina wrestler, and Kawa (6-3) has not lost since his freshman season. Giamoni (5-1) has not lost to a Tar Heel since moving up from 141 to 149 pounds midway through the 2001-02 season. The only other NC State wrestler to face the Tar Heels is junior 133-pounder Daniel Pacitti, who lost twice in as many attempts a year ago.

    "Getting those three guys back and healthy is crucial for us, to understate the obvious," Wolfpack wrestling coach Bob Guzzo said. "Giamoni, Garren and Kawa are tested, veteran guys. Each one is a two-time ACC champion, and we need them in there to be successful, but we can't win with just those three. We need some of our newcomers to step up and compete for us as well."

    The Wolfpack got some encouraging performances this past weekend. Sophomore 184-pounder Daniel Humphries, junior 141-pounder Alex Hernandez and freshman heavyweight Jainor Palma each won twice in three bouts on Saturday, with the losses coming against top-flight competition in the form of third-ranked Illinois.

    The matchups feature several new faces for both teams. At 125 pounds, redshirt-freshman Jeremy Hartrum (5-4) will battle UNC true freshman Drew Forshey (7-5). Hartrum beat Forshey 7-4 at the Southern Scuffle.

    Pacitti (6-6) will face redshirt-freshman Bobby Shaw (10-13) for North Carolina at 133, and Hernandez (9-6), a junior for the Wolfpack, will face redshirt-freshman Jacob Paul (5-7) at 141. Giamoni (7-4) will likely see North Carolina junior Andrew Slack (6-11) in the 149-pound match.

    Garren (8-2) and sophomore Ashton Buswell (8-13) will square off at 157, and Kawa (8-2) will take on sophomore Garrett Atkinson (7-12). Freshman Rick Brownlee (0-2) or sophomore Michael Waite (4-5) will take the mat for NC State at 174 amd will battle senior Joshua Lee (4-12) for the Tar Heels.

    Humphries (8-7) will get the nod at 184 for the Wolfpack and will face junior Mark Canty (13-12). Redshirt-freshman Zach Garren (5-8) will go at 197 for the Pack and will have to face redshirt-junior Venroy July (13-11). At heavyweight, Palma (5-8) will face UNC senior Ryan Adams (16-9).

    Guzzo Guns For 350: NC State head coach Bob Guzzo already has amassed numerous milestones in his 30 years with the Wolfpack, and he will add another to the list when he wins his next dual match. Guzzo's next victory will be No. 350, which ranks second in ACC history. Guzzo needs 30 more wins to become the ACC's all-time leader.

    Garren Notes: At 8-2 so far this season, senior 157-pounder Scott Garren is off to a strong start, but that is nothing new. Garren has not lost very often during his career with the Wolfpack. In compiling a 62-17 career won-lost record (.785), Garren has won 36 of his last 42 matches (.857). In regular-season competition, Garren has won 28 of his last 30 bouts (.933), with both losses coming earlier this season to the No. 1 wrestler in the country at the time of the match.

    Garren got off to an 18-0 start a year ago, which gave him a 23-match winning streak dating back to his final five bouts of the 2000-01 season. (Garren tore five ligaments in his right knee in February 2001 and was unable to wrestle again until the start of the 2002-03 campaign.)

    Garren's 23-match winning streak was the longest by an NC State wrestler since Sylvester Terkay went 41-0 at heavyweight and won the national championship in 1993.

    Garren now has lost just four times since February 2001. All four of those losses were to ranked wrestlers - two to the No. 1 wrestler at the time, one to No. 3, and one to No. 13.

    A two-time ACC champion, Garren began his career in 1999-2000 by winning seven of his first nine bouts and eight of his first 11. He opened the 2000-01 season by winning five of his first seven and 10 of his first 13.

    Milestones: With four wins at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational, senior 165-pounder Dustin Kawa moved into 17th place in NC State history in career victories. Kawa is 70-31 for his career.

    Senior 157-pounder Scott Garren improved to 62-17 with his two victories at the NC State Duals this past weekend. Garren's career winning percentage, subject to fluctuation, now stands at .785, which ranks 11th in school history. Jim Zenz (1977-80) is 10th at .804 (92-22-1). Sylvester Terkay (1990-93) is the all-time leader at .897 (122-14). Terkay is the only Wolfpack wrestler ever to win 100 or more matches in a career. He went 41-0 and won the NCAA heavyweight championship as a senior in 1993.

    After his victory over Cal Ferry of Illinois on Saturday, senior 149-pounder Jake Giamoni's career record stands at 68-37, but that includes a 17-10 mark as a freshman at Boston University. Giamoni is 51-27 in two-plus seasons at NC State.

    In The Rankings:The Atlantic Coast Conference is not getting much respect from the pollsters at Intermat.com. Only three ACC wrestlers show up in Intermat.com's latest national poll, and no conference teams are either ranked.

    NC State's Scott Garren is No. 14 at 157, but Jake Giamoni and Dustin Kawa both have dropped out of the rankings altogether. Giamoni was No. 17th at 149, but a pair of losses at the NC State Duals pushed him out of the rankings. Kawa dropped from 18th at 165 to unranked, mainly due to inactivity. He has not wrestled since early December because of injuries, but returns to action this week. Virginia's Scott Moore (No. 2 at 141) and Tim Foley (No. 16 at 165) are the only other two ACC wrestlers in this week's rankings.

     

     

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