CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia wrestling team opens the 2022-23 season this weekend with 29 wrestlers heading to compete in the Southeast Open at Roanoke College in Salem, Va., on Saturday (Nov. 5).
HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION
Fans can follow the action with a live stream of each mat with a subscription to FloWrestling. Live results will also be provided by FloWrestling but do not require a subscription. Links to the live stream and live results are available at VirginiaSports.com. Fans can also get updates after rounds by following the program’s official Twitter account (@UVAWrestling).
HOOS IN THE RANKINGS
Virginia enters the first week of competition with five wrestlers ranked in the opening edition of the individual rankings by InterMat. Among those are three wrestlers who earned NCAA bids a year ago: Michael Battista, Jake Keating and Justin McCoy. Also ranked are graduate transfer Neil Antrassian, who joined the Cavaliers after a career at Penn, and returner Jarod Verkleeren who was an NCAA qualifier at Penn State before joining the Cavaliers last season as a graduate transfer.
149: No. 21 Jarod Verkleeren
157: No. 13 Jake Keating
165: No. 9 Justin McCoy
184: No. 24 Neil Antrassian
197: No. 32 Michael Battista
BACK FOR THE CAVALIERS
Virginia returns a group of six wrestlers who have qualified for the NCAA Championships, including five from last year’s eight qualifiers. Back to lead the charge for the 2022-23 season after advancing to the NCAA Championships a year ago are Patrick McCormick (125), Dylan Cedeno (141), Jake Keating (157), Justin McCoy (165) and Michael Battista (197). Also previously qualifying for the NCAA Championships is graduate student Jarod Verkleeren (149) who qualified as an undergraduate at Penn State before transferring to Virginia.
NEWCOMERS TO THE MAT
The Cavaliers also welcome a recruiting class featuring a bevy of highly-ranked recruits that includes six wrestlers who were ranked in the top 100 nationally by FloWrestling. Members of the incoming class ranked in the top 100 were Kyle Montaperto (No. 47), Jack Gioffre (No. 57), Michael Gioffre (No. 64), Garrett Grice (No. 81) Robert Avila (No. 92) and Griffin Gammell (No. 98).
HOOS IN THE OPEN FIELD
Virginia is slated to have 30 wrestlers compete in the event between the Open bracket and the Freshman/Sophomore bracket. Wrestlers will be competing in an attached and an unattached status.
125: Joe Haynes, Patrick McCormick, Kyle Montaperto*
133: Garrett Grice*, Erik Roggie, Keyveon Roller*, Marlon Yarbrough
141: Evan Buchanan, Kyren Butler, Dylan Cedeno
149: Michael Gioffre*, Denton Spencer, Mason Stefanelli*, No. 21 Jarod Verkleeren
157: Robert Avila*, Gavin Cagle, Dominic Isola, Nic Sansone
165: Nick Hamilton*
174: Rocco Contino, Vic Marcelli, Justin Phillips, Hudson Stewart
184: No. 24 Neil Antrassian, Hadyn Danals, Robby Patrick,
197: No. 32 Michael Battista
HWT: Gabe Christenson, Jessie Knight, Ethan Weatherspoon
* Denotes Freshman/Sophomore bracket
LAST TIME AT THE SOUTHEAST OPEN
Virginia had 10 placewinners at the Southeast Open a year ago, including seven freshmen and the 133-pound title in the freshman/sophomore bracket that was claimed by Erik Roggie. Other placewinners returning to compete this year were runner-up finishers Rocco Contino and Hadyn Danals, third-place finishers Kyren Butler and Gavin Cagle, and fourth-place finishers Marlon Yarbrough and Hudson Stewart.
ON NEXT FOR THE HOOS
The Cavaliers will go back out on the road next weekend, traveling to compete at the Mountaineer Invitational hosted by Appalachian State. Virginia will then return home for its first contest at Mem Gym against No. 15 Northwestern on Nov. 20 in a 7:30 p.m. dual.