ODU Will Face Seven Ranked Teams at Penn State Open

November 29, 2006
By ODU Athletics

Nov. 29, 2006

NORFOLK, VA -- The ODU wrestling team heads back out on the road for the fourth straight weekend and will enter in its toughest tournament of this early season. The Penn State Open boasts seven nationally ranked teams and a host of nationally ranked individual grapplers. The all day event will begin Sunday, December 3rd. The Monarchs host a dual event for the first time in 2006 next Friday, December 8th.

Pit Stop at Penn State
The Monarchs of Old Dominion continue its grueling schedule with a stop at another tough tournament in 2006-07. They head back to Pennsylvania to face off at the Penn State Open. Expected at the open are nationally ranked opponents Penn State-7th, Edinboro-13th, Pennsylvania-14th, Michigan State-14th, Lehigh-20th, Rider-27th, and Navy-30th.
It should also be a useful scouting tool as CAA foes Rider, Boston, Drexel, and Binghamton will all be in attendance. Rider has five nationally ranked wrestlers including 7th in the nation at 141, Don Fisch.

Nationally Ranked
Christian Staylor was ranked 18th in the pre-season polls for the 125-pound weight class. Chris Brown has moved up to 17th and Ryan Williams stays at 20th in the national rankings by Amateur Wrestling News. ODU has an immensely growing program including back-to-back top eight (W.I.N. Magazine) recruiting classes.

Rockin' Rookies
Coach Steve Martin has called upon his inexperienced grapplers early and many are answering to that call. The Monarchs continue to test themselves early with one of the toughest schedules in collegiate wrestling as ODU has faced off against a number of ranked teams and individuals already this season. The Monarchs continue to throw a roster full of freshman at the field and continue to get significant results.
True freshmen Adam Koballa and Jesse Strawn both placed in all three tournaments so far this season. At the Mat Town Open, red-shirt freshman Matt Pellar and sophomore David Mendoza took first in their weight classes. Another red-shirt freshman making a name for himself this season is Chris Brown. Brown has also placed in all three tournaments this season including a second place finish at the MSU Open.
Cam Watkins and Kaylen Baxter round out the red-shirts that have placed and Kyle Hutter, a true freshman, took 4th in his second collegiate opportunity at the Mat Town Open last weekend.

Two Sign For Next Year
Nationally ranked high school grapplers Gary Frazier and Roy Dragon III signed letters of intent to Old Dominion earlier this month. The two will satisfy the need for more depth in the upper-weight classes. Frazier will most likely be inserted to the 197-pound class. Ranked 25th by Wrestling USA he has earned two Oklahoma state championships and has totaled a career 102-8 record. Dragon will come into ODU ready for the heavyweight division. Ranked as high as 11th in the nation Dragon has a 107-10 career record with over 75 percent of his wins coming by way of the pin.

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