April 17, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. -
NC State wrestling will be traveling to Las Vegas this weekend, to compete in both the U.S. Senior Nationals and the FILA Junior Nationals. In the freestyle wrestling format, the top seven finishers in each weight class will qualify for the World Team Trials.
Nick Gwiazdowski will be competing in the U.S. Senior Nationals at 120 KG (264.5 lbs.), and he enters as the seventh seed.
As a freshman at Binghamton in 2011-12, he earned All-American honors at 285 pounds before transferring and redshirting this past season at NC State. Gwiazdowski stayed busy this past season, winning three of the four open tournaments he wrestled in, and his only blemish was a close loss to two-time NCAA Champion Tony Nelson of Minnesota. In late February, he brought home top honors at the National Collegiate Open.
NC State will also have four grapplers compete in the FILA Junior Nationals, which is for athletes born between 1993-1995. Freshman Tyler Hunt and Cohl Fulk will both be in the 66 KG (145.5 lbs.) weight class, sophomore Thomas Gantt at 70 KG (154.25 lbs.), and sophomore Ryan Fox at 74 KG (163 lbs.).
Hunt was the Pack's starter at 141 pounds this past season, and finished with a 21-10 record, including 8-2 in dual matches. His win total was the second-highest on the Pack. Gantt was NC State's starter at 149 pounds, and he finished with a 16-9 mark. Gantt brought home the Pack's highest finish at the ACC Championships, placing third.
Both Fox and Fulk sat out this past season and redshirted. Fox wrestled in four open tournaments at 165 pounds, going 10-8. Fulk competed at 149 pounds in three open tournaments, posting a 6-6 mark.
"The guys wrestling in FILA Juniors and Nick competing in the U.S. Open will all gain valuable experience for the 2013-2014 season," said head coach Pat Popolizio. "Our staff is excited to see some of the guys that redshirted this season get on the mat and compete."
Former Pack All-American Darrius Little will also be competing in the U.S. Senior Nationals, and is seeded ninth at 60 KG (132 lbs.). Little concluded his NC State career last year, finishing eighth at the 2012 NCAA Championships at 141 pounds.
Fans can follow all the action on the Pack's official twitter account, @PackWrestle.
For more information on the U.S. Senior Nationals, click here. Live stats will be available here, once the competition begins. For more information on the FILA Junior Nationals, click here. Live stats will be available here.