Four National Seeds Highlight Nine Virginia NCAA Qualifiers
March 13, 2013
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Nine Virginia wrestlers have qualified for the 2013 NCAA Championships, with four earning national seeds for the event, slated for March 21-23 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa. Both numbers represent program records. The brackets were announced Wednesday evening by the NCAA. The championships will be held March 21-23 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa.
Virginia earned four top-12 national seeds. Matt Snyder (R-Sr., Lewistown, Pa.) and Nick Sulzer (R-So., Cleveland, Ohio) each claimed No. 8 national seeds at 125 and 165 pounds, respectively. Freshman George DiCamillo (Highland Heights, Ohio) nabbed the No. 11 seed at 133 pounds, while Jedd Moore (R-Sr., Mount Vernon, Ohio) notched the No. 12 seed at 157 pounds.
Joe Spisak (R-So., Boiling Springs, Pa.), Derek Valenti (R-Sr., Newton, N.J.), Jon Fausey (R-Jr., Dalmatia, Pa.), Stephen Doty (R-Jr., St. Louis, Mo.) and Mike Salopek (R-Sr., North Huntingdon, Pa.) also automatically qualified for the championships at 141, 149, 174, 184 and 197 pounds, respectively, by virtue of their finishes at the ACC Championships.
Virginia’s previous high for NCAA qualifiers was eight in 2010, while the program’s previous best for NCAA seeds was three, set last season.
After earning a No. 11 national seed last year, Snyder (19-7) improved to a No. 8 seed this year and will make his third straight NCAA appearance. He has a rematch in the first round as he will wrestle Old Dominion’s Rob Deutsch (26-9) in the first round. The two had a great match on Feb. 10, won 1-0 by Snyder based on the riding time point after Snyder held the advantage for the entire third period.
DiCamillo (30-8) is the first Virginia freshman wrestler to earn a national seed. The ACC champion at 133 pounds, DiCamillo will face Boston University’s Dane Harlowe (9-5) in the first round Thursday morning.
Spisak (21-5) will have his hands full in the opener Thursday, as he will face top-seeded Hunter Stieber (31-0) of Ohio State. Also a 2011 NCAA qualifier at 133 pounds, Spisak took third place at the ACC Championships last week to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA field.
A 2011 All-American at 149 pounds, Valenti (17-8) will wrestle Cornell’s Chris Villalonga (23-10) in the opening session. Valenti was the ACC runner-up at 149 last week. He will be wrestling in his third NCAA Championships (2010 at 141 pounds, 2011 at 149 pounds).
Moore (29-6) earned a national seed for the first time in his career. He competed in the NCAA Championships as a true freshman in 2009 and is making his first trip back. The ACC runner-up at 157 pounds, Moore will wrestle South Dakota State’s Cody Pack (15-14) in the first round.
Sulzer (24-8) will compete at NCAAs for the second straight year while earning his first national seed. He is slated to wrestle Buffalo’s Mark Lewandowski (30-7) in the opening round. The two have met once previously, with Lewandowski earning a 4-3 win on Nov. 11, 2011, at the Body Bar Invitational.
Fausey (29-8) is making his third straight NCAA appearance and his first at 174 pounds after wrestling previously at 184. He will wrestle Columbia’s Stephen West (23-7) in the Thursday morning session.
Doty (17-10) joins DiCamillo as the lone NCAA newcomers among the Virginia qualifiers. He will wrestle Iowa State’s Boaz Beard (14-7) in the 184-pound pigtail match on Thursday morning; the winner advances to face 12th-seeded Ethen Lofthouse of Iowa in the first round. Doty was the ACC runner-up last week.
Salopek (13-5) will wrestle Drexel’s Brandon Palik (24-4) in the first round at 197 pounds. Salopek is competing in his second NCAA Championship event; he was a 2010 NCAA qualifier at 184 pounds.