Seedings Released for CAA Wrestling Championships
March 2, 2007
FAIRFAX, VA -- Thursday evening the wrestling coaches met to seed the CAA Championships and seven Monarchs earned first round byes. Old Dominion upperclassmen Christian Staylor (R-Sr.) and Nick Pullano (Jr.) received the highest seeds for the Monarchs in the number two slot. Wrestling begins at 1:00 pm and continues through the finals which are scheduled to begin at 5:00 pm Saturday evening.
125 - ODU's Kyle Hutter is seeded third in the bracket. His second round bout will be against the winner of Joe Cipriano (Wagner) and (6) Abby Rush (Boston University). Hutter went 5-1 in the conference with a 5-3 decision over second seeded Steve Mytych.
133 - One of two upperclassmen on Old Dominion's squad, Christian Staylor is the most experienced grappler for Steve Martin. He is a former NCAA Qualifier and as the second seed, he could coast to the championship bout. The top wrestler he'd face in the championship bracket before the title bout would be (3) Joe Whitaker (Boston University) of which he didn't allow a point at the CAA Duals in a 6-0 victory.
141 - Ryan Williams is a returning NCAA Qualifier, but he struggled against the conference this season. Going just 2-3 against conference opponents, Williams will be looking to prove something at the Championships. After his bye, he'll have to wrestle (5) Cory Dunn (Sacred Heart) or Kelin Bidelspach (Campbell). Cam Watkins wrestled Dunn at the CAA Duals and won 5-4.
149 - Kaylen Baxter, twice named Rookie of the Week this year, has been known to topple top tier competition. He sports a 4-2 conference record and will be out to prove he's better than the sixth seed he was awarded. He will most likely wrestle (3) Kyle Fried (Binghamton) in the second round. Fried defeated Baxter 10-5 in their only meeting earlier this year at the Southern Scuffle.
157 - Redshirt freshman Chris Brown has been excellent, and sometimes spectacular at this weight class. He has an opportunity to show the conference what he's got as the number three seed. He's on the same side of the bracket as (2) Ryan Hluschak (Drexel), who Brown feels he can beat. Hluschak defeated Brown in a 4-3 decision early in the year and then pinned the Monarch in the final seconds of the third period in dual competition.
165 - Nick Pullano, the only other upperclassmen for the Monarchs, went a perfect 6-0 in conference competition this year. He won 14 straight bouts at one point, and will be looking to right his ship at the Championships after a small four-bout slide. The biggest test on his side of the bracket will be (3) Tyler Tisdell (George Mason), who he has defeated twice this season.
174 - Derek Coffey has gained a lot of confidence down the home stretch of the season and could surprise some of the conference opponents. As the sixth seed, Coffey has a tough first round matchup with (3) Nick Kozar (Drexel). The two battled at the CAA Duals as Coffey took the loss 4-1.
184 - Jesse Strawn has been a roller-coaster type wrestler this year that has looked unbeatable at times. As the three seed, he could coast into the title bout, but will have to beat Rider's number two seeded Mike Miller. Miller beat Strawn twice by a combined four points, so Strawn can definitely turn that bout around.
197 - Quite possibly the Monarchs best wrestler will be slated as the three seed. David Mendoza will take on the winner of the Rob Yoder (Cambell) and (6) Kevin Fox (Sacred Heart) bout. Mendoza was 7-2 against conference opponents all year long. He split bouts with (2) T.J. Morrison (Rider), who he would most likely wrestle in the semi-final bout.
285 - Matt Pellar, the four seed, will need to get through both (5) Mike Patterson (Binghamton) and (1) Payam Zarrinpour (Sacred Heart) to reach the title bout. Zarrinpour is an All-American hopeful for SHU and defeated Peller 12-3 when they met at the CAA Duals. Patterson and Pellar haven't wrestled yet this year.
As a team...the Monarchs have a definite shot at second place in the conference with the possibility of overthrowing Hofstra for the conference championship. Hofstra boasts nine of the ten top seeds but the Pride wrestlers only won by decision over the Monarchs in five of those weight classes. The Monarchs have been a great tournament team all season long and have a chance to qualify a number of wrestlers to the national tournament.