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    Wrestling Heads to Virginia Tech for ACC Championship
     
    Tommy Gantt is the second seed at 157 pounds.
    Tommy Gantt is the second seed at 157 pounds.
     

    March 7, 2014

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    Video: Mat 1 | Mat 2 | Finals
    ACC Championship Page | Brackets

    RALEIGH, N.C. - The NC State wrestling team heads to Blacksburg, Va., to compete in the 2014 ACC Championship on March 8. The Pack has claimed 14 ACC titles since the conference was formed in 1954, with the most recent coming in 2007. NC State has won 110 ACC individual titles in league history, with Darrion Caldwell’s win at 149 pounds in 2011 coming as the most recent.

    One of the youngest teams nationally, seven of the Pack’s 10 wrestlers will be competing in their first ACC Championship.

    About the ACC Championship
    The ACC will hold the 60th annual ACC Championship March 8 in Blacksburg, Va., at Cassell Coliseum. Wrestling begins at 10 a.m. and all of the action will be broadcast live by ESPN3. Here is a tentative schedule:
    • First Round - 10 a.m.
    • Semifinals - 1:30 p.m.
    • Semifinal consolation - 3:45 p.m.
    • Finals Consolation - 5:30 p.m.
    • Finals - 7:30 p.m.

    ACC Receives 34 NCAA Wrestling Championship Qualifier Allocations
    The NCAA has announced the qualifier allocations for the 2014 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, with the Atlantic Coast Conference receiving a league-record 34 automatic spots, including multiple qualifiers in all 10 weight classes.

    The ACC received five qualifiers in the 141- and the 197-pound weight class, and four qualifiers in the 149-, 184- and 285-pound pound weight classes. Three spots were awarded to the conference at 125 and 174. The 133-, 157- and 165-pound weight classes each received two slots.

    Gwiazdowski Among ACC Elite with Perfect 6-0 Mark
    NC State’s Nick Gwiazdowski was one of the top-ranked wrestlers in the ACC the entire season, and was one of just five conference grapplers to finish a perfect 6-0 against league competition. Among the five, Gwiazdowski racked up the most dual points with 27 - 2 falls, 3 major decisions, 1 decision. Three of his six conference wins were against ranked foes, including a top-10 win. He was also the only ACC wrestler to record more than one pin against ACC foes.

    Wrestler School Weight ACC Rec. ACC Pts.
    Nick Gwiazdowski NC State 285 6-0 27
    Tyler Wilps Pittsburgh 174 6-0 24
    Jimmy Sheptock Maryland 184 6-0 24
    Nick Sulzer Virginia 165 6-0 22
    Edgar Bright Pittsburgh 141 6-0 20

     

     

    2013 ACC Championship Recap
    NC State placed fifth overall with a team score of 30 points last year at Maryland. The Pack’s top finishers on the day were Tommy Gantt at 149 pounds and Mike Kosoy at 285 pounds, who both brought home third place finishes. Joe DeAngelo (125) and Sam Speno (133) both automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships with their fourth place finishes.

    Youth Movement
    Every time the NC State wrestling team was in home action this year, Pack fans that came to watch needed a roster to see who was on the mat. Among the Pack’s starters, only three of the current 10 saw action last season. The Pack’s starters are six freshmen, two sophomores, a junior and a senior. In all, 14 freshmen have seen action in a dual.

    For the entire 2013-14 season, not including the Pack’s redshirting grapplers, the freshmen have combined for 56.9 percent (153) of the team’s total wins followed by the sophomores at 23.0 percent (62), the juniors at 11.1 percent (30) and the seniors at 8.9 percent (24).

    Pack Grapplers Rack Up Wins
    Four NC State wrestlers have crossed the 20-win plateau this year. Nick Gwiazdowski leads the Pack with 35 wins, the most in the nation among ranked wrestlers on TheOpenMat.com, and sixth all-time in NCSU history. Tommy Gantt is second with his 30 victories at 157 pounds, that mark is now 14th-best in the Pack record books.

    Freshman Pete Renda has 24 wins at 174 pounds, the fourth-most for a freshman in NC State history. Most recently, Sam Speno joined the club and he now has 22 wins at 141 pounds this year. Freshman Brian Hamann will be looking to increase the Pack total to five, as he currently has 19 wins this year.

    Gwiazdowski Enters ACCs on Hot Streak
    No ACC wrestler can match the regular season that the Pack’s redshirt-sophomore Nick Gwiazdowski put together. In his final bout before the ACC Championship, Gwiazdowski defeated No. 1 ranked Michael McMullan of Northwestern in the Pack’s final dual of the year. Trailing 3-0 going into the third period, Gwiazdowski scored an escape point to start the final period and then scored a takedown to force overtime. In the extra period, he scored another takedown for the 5-3 win.

    For his efforts, he was named the ACC Wrestler of the Week. In the NCAA rankings, Gwiazdowski has the seventh-most pins and is the eight-most dominate.

    Gwiazdowski has won his last 13 matches dating back to Jan. 2, and finished a perfect 20-0 in duals this year. Six of his last eight wins on the year have come against ranked foes. His only losses this year are to the current No. 1 Adam Coon of Michigan (3-1) and two-time defending NCAA Champion Tony Nelson of Minnesota (1-0). He also leads the Pack in wins (35) and pins (15) this year, both marks are sixth-best at NC State.

    From Selected Team Captain to Leading the Pack
    His season started with being named the Pack’s team captain back in October, and Tommy Gantt has turned that honor into being one of the top wrestlers this season.

    The junior from Cahokia, Ill., is second on the Pack with his 30 wins, the 14th-best mark in NC State history. He is also second with 16 dual victories, and his five tech falls lead the Pack this year.
    In what will surely be a competitive battle for the ACC crown at 157 pounds, Gantt was one of three conference grapplers to finish 5-1 against league competition.

    Need a Bonus Point Win, Ask Renda
    While many NC State wrestlers have contributed to the Pack’s strong year, freshman Pete Renda went above and beyond in earning his team bonus points. The Topton, Pa., native was a perfect 12-0 in bonus point victories: six by pin, five by major decisions and one by tech fall.

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