ODU Wrestling Releases 2014-15 Schedule
By ODU Athletics
NORFOLK, Va. – The Old Dominion University wrestling team has announced their schedule for the upcoming 2014-15 season. The Monarchs have yet again prepared an incredibly challenging schedule, as they now enter their second season of competition within the very deep Mid American Conference. Coach Steve Martin and his squad will host six dual meets at the Ted Constant Center in Norfolk, including a showdown with perennial powerhouse Missouri.
Head Coach Steve Martin said, “The goal of our schedule is to help prepare our student-athletes to peak for the MAC tournament and the NCAA championships. Our wrestlers will have the opportunity to compete against the best in the country all season. As it is, the MAC is the second toughest conference in the nation, so we are already facing top-notch opponents every week. The schedule is all about getting as many of our guys on the podium at the end of the year as possible.”
Martin continued, “We added the Northeast Duals and Midlands to the schedule this season to mix it up and face some teams we don’t usually see during the year. We are also looking forward to hosting six home dual meets, including the home-opener against Missouri, the reigning MAC champions.”
The wrestling Monarchs are fresh off a solid 2013-14 campaign, in which the team compiled a 4-4 record within the MAC and won five of their last seven dual meets as a first-year member of the conference. Additionally, they secured an impressive third-place finish at the MAC tournament and sent six wrestlers to the NCAA Championships in Oklahoma City where they finished tied for 22nd with UVA. Freshman 184-pounder Jack Dechow (Richmond, Ill./Richmond-Burton) topped off an incredible rookie campaign with a fourth-place finish at the NCAA tournament and thus garnered All-American status.
As always, 2014-15 action will kickoff for Old Dominion with the annual Blue-Silver Intrasquad Scrimmage on a date to be later determined.
ODU will officially begin the season with a pair of opens on back-to-back weekends in November. First the squad will head north to the Binghamton Open on Nov. 9 where three-time defending national champions Penn State will likely be in the mix. ODU will then trek to Raleigh, N.C., on Nov. 16 for the Wolfpack Open.
Nov. 23 marks the home opener, as the Monarchs will host 2014 MAC Champion and NCAA 14th place finisher Missouri. Missouri returns three All-Americans this season, including 2014 NCAA Champion J’Den Cox at 197.
The next weekend on Nov. 29, ODU will head to the Northeast Duals in Albany, N.Y. for a trio of dual meets against Wyoming, Purdue, and LIU Post.
After a few week hiatus, the Monarchs will return to the mat on Dec. 20 when they host Chattanooga. The Mocs are coming off an impressive season in 2013-14, in which they went 16-7 in dual meets and claimed their 28th Southern Conference crown.
Finally, ODU will close off 2014 with a pair of tournaments, as some team members will travel to the prestigious Midlands tournament on the campus of Northwestern in Evanston, Ill., while others will participate in the Cradle Gear Invitational at Lock Haven. Widely considered the most competitive regular season tournament in the nation, the Midlands will feature the likes of the 23-time NCAA Champion Iowa Hawkeyes, and other top-tier programs such as returning fifth place NCAA finisher Edinboro and Big Ten standout Illinois, among many others.
To kick off 2015, ODU will travel a short distance up the road for the Virginia Duals in Hampton, Va. on Jan. 9-10. The Virginia Duals will feature 16 teams from around the country, including in-state rivals Virginia and Virginia Tech.
The Monarchs will then take on American in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 18. The Eagles return a solid squad that includes 2014 NCAA 10th seed and round of 12 finisher David Terao at 125 lbs.
Starting on Jan. 23, ODU will host a string of four-straight home dual meets beginning with Buffalo. Last season, the Monarchs ran past the Bulls with a 21-10 victory. Two days later on Jan. 25 ODU will play host to visiting Kent State. The Golden Flashes return NCAA All-American Ian Miller at 157 lbs. who placed fourth a year ago, as well as a plethora of other NCAA qualifiers.
On Jan. 30 the Monarchs will square off with Ohio at the Ted Constant Center. Last season, ODU came away with a big upset victory over the Bobcats 22-15 in Athens, which handed them their only home loss of the year. Ohio compiled a 13-4 mark last season and will return 2013 All-American Cody Walters at 174 lbs.
ODU will cap off its final home meet of the year with N.C. State on Senior Night on Feb. 6. The Wolfpack return a tough group that churned out a 14-7 record last season and saw heavyweight Nick Gwiazdowski claim an NCAA title.
To close out the dual meet season, the Monarchs will hit the road for four-straight MAC conference matches. ODU will take on Eastern Michigan on Feb. 13 and will then square off against Central Michigan on Feb 15. CMU is coming off a fifth-place finish at the MAC championships.
On Feb. 20 Steve Martin’s squad will head to Cedar Rapids, Iowa to do battle with Northern Iowa. The Panthers went undefeated in dual meets last season, placed second in the MAC tournament, and had three All-Americans. ODU finishes the dual season at Northern Illinois on Feb. 22.
The Mid American Conference tournament will take place March 7-8 in Columbia, Mo.
Lastly, ODU will travel to St. Louis, Mo. for the NCAA Championships on March 19-21.
Be sure to follow Old Dominion Wrestling on Twitter at twitter.com/ODUWrestling and find them on Facebook at facebook.com/OldDominionWrestling.