Wrestling to Compete in CAA Tournament this Weekend

March 02, 2011
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

March 2, 2011

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NORFOLK, Va. - Old Dominion University wrestling competes in the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament starting Friday at Rider University.

The Monarchs take a 7-12-1 overall record into the tournament and a 3-2-1 CAA record.

Senior James Nicholson has won three conference championships and looks to become the first CAA wrestler to win four-straight CAA Championships. He also is looking to be the first person to win four titles in the same weight class. Hofstra's Jon Masa won four titles (2002-03, 2005-06) but won his first title at 141 and the last three at 149. Hofstra senior Lou Ruggirello has won three titles at 133 pounds. Nicholson comes into the tournament with a 29-0 record and ranks fourth in the nation at 125 pounds.

Fellow senior Kyle Hutter, a two-time NCAA Qualifier, is going for his first conference championship. The Mokena, Ill. native is 29-7 on the year and No. 12 in the country at 133. Hutter has been ranked in the top-15 all season.

Sophomore Brennan Brumley is third on the team with 21 wins and is competing in his first conference championship.

Senior Joey Metzler is 16-15 and will look to improve upon his third place finish at the CAA Championships from two years ago. He has three wins over ranked opponents this season with two of those wins coming at the Southern Scuffle.

The Monarchs are unsure who will wrestle at 157, it will either be Micah Blair, Jayk Cobbs or Chad Lowman. Cobbs has battled injuries most of the season, but is 2-0 on the year.

Senior Dan Rivera has 15 wins entering the tournament with a win over an NCAA Qualifier. This will be his first time competing in the CAA Tournament.

Freshmen Tristan Warner and Jacob Henderson have a combined 26 wins at 174 and 197, respectively. Warner beat his first NCAA Qualifier with a win over UNC Greensboro's Byron Sigmon in a 3-1 sudden victory. It was Warner's third match against Sigmon this season with all three going into extra time. Henderson has eight dual meet wins on the year and was a high school All-American last season.

Junior Joe Budi has improved one spot each year at the tournament after placing fourth as a freshman. He brings a 17-12 record into the weekend. He has one win this season over an NCAA Qualifier.

Sophomore 285-pounder Grant Chapman will compete in a wide-open weight class. Chapman has 11 wins on the year.

The conference championship begins with quarterfinal action on Friday at 1 p.m. and continues with consolations at 4:00 p.m. Semifinals complete day one at 7 p.m. Saturday's final day of action opens with the second round of consolations at 10 a.m. with the final session to follow at 1 p.m.

The CAA has 17 allocated spots for the NCAA Tournament, with 125, 149 and 174 getting two spots while 133 and 165 have three bids. All weight classes will consist of 33 wrestlers.

The NCAA Wrestling Championship will be from March 17-19 in Philadelphia, Pa.