Old Dominion Wrestling Sweeps VaSID Major Honors; James Nicholson Named Freshman and Wrestler of the Year
By ODU Athletics
July 11, 2008
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Old Dominion swept the major honors in the 2008 Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) All-State Wrestling Team, the first-ever all-state wrestling squad announced by VaSID. James Nicholson, a 125-pounder for ODU, earned Freshman and Wrestler of the Year honors, while Monarch head coach Steve Martin was tabbed VaSID Coach of the Year.
"We are honored to be recognized by the Virginia Sports Information Directors," said Martin. "These awards show us that our program is going in the right direction as we strive to build our program into a national powerhouse."
Nicholson was an All-American this season after taking eighth place at the NCAA Championships. He was one of just five freshmen to earn All-America honors this season and became the first Monarch since 1995 to nab All-America laurels. He is joined by teammates Kyle Hutter (133), Kaylen Baxter (149) and Chris Brown (165) on the first team.
"Nicholson is an example that hard work pays off as he continues to garner national recognition," said Martin.
The VaSID team was selected from the nine wrestling programs across the state, including six from Division I. Old Dominion led all schools with four first-team selections, while the Monarchs and Virginia each had six overall picks. The Cavaliers had first-team selections Chris Henrich (174) and Rocco Caponi (184) as well as four second-team honorees. Liberty also racked up two first-team and two second-team selections.
The VaSID team also features Southern Virginia's Peter Rose, who won the NCWA national championship at 157 pounds. 2008 NCAA Championships competitors Tim Harner of Liberty (141), Henrich (174), Caponi (184), Cayle Byers of George Mason (197) and Patrick Walker of Liberty (285) also comprised the first team.
Old Dominion put together one of the best seasons in program history, going 17-3 in dual action and qualifying an all-time high of six wrestlers to the NCAA Tournament.
2008 VaSID All-State Wrestling Team
First Team 125 James Nicholson, Old Dominion 133 Kyle Hutter, Old Dominion 141 Tim Harner, Liberty 149 Kaylen Baxter, Old Dominion 157 Peter Rose, Southern Virginia 165 Chris Brown, Old Dominion 174 Chris Henrich, Virginia 184 Rocco Caponi, Virginia 197 Cayle Byers, George Mason 285 Patrick Walker, Liberty
Second Team 125 Ross Gitomer, Virginia 133 Eric Albright, Virginia 141 Ryan Williams, Old Dominion 149 Shawn Harris, Virginia 157 Frankie McLaughlin, George Mason 165 Chad Porter, Liberty 174 Aaron Kelley, Liberty 184 Jesse Strawn, Old Dominion 197 Brent Jones, Virginia 285 Josh Wine, VMI