Nicholson Named CAA Wrestler of the Year

April 05, 2011
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

April 5, 2011

LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. - James Nicholson was named Colonial Athletic Association Wrestler of the Year, the league announced on Tuesday. The voting was conducted by the CAA coaches. Also receiving honors for the Monarchs were Eric Dunnet, Scott Festejo and Tristan Warner, who earned All-Freshman accolades.

Nicholson capped his outstanding career with a 35-3 record this season and earned All-America honors for the second time in his career, becoming the first ODU two-time All-American since Buddy Lee, who did it in 1980 and 1982.

The Des Moines, Iowa native became the first CAA wrestler to win four-straight conference championships when he won the 125-pound championship this season.

Nicholson started the year winning his first 31 matches, going 19-0 in dual matches, recording eight pins, nine major decisions and three technical falls. He finishes his career tied atop ODU's all-time wins list with Chris Brown, as each wrestler has 138 victories.

The senior earned the No. 4 seed at the NCAA Championships and started his run with a second period pin over Cal State Bakersfield's Tyler Iwamura. After a second round loss, he fought back to win three-straight matches, all against seeded wrestlers, to clinch All-American honors.

Dunnet went 9-4 on the year, taking fifth place at the Hokie Open and second at the Binghamton Open. He had six major decisions on the year.

Festejo earned his all-freshman honor at 141 pounds, where he went 8-10 on the season. He delivered two dual meet wins and three major decisions.

Warner led all ODU freshman with 18 victories while wrestling at 174 pounds. He notched two pins and three major decisions on the season. He took third at the season opening Hokie Open and second at the Pembroke Classic.

2010-11 CAA All Freshman Team
125: Bubba McGinley, BU
133: Eric Dunnet, ODU
141: Scott Festejo, ODU
149: Zach Clemente, Hofstra
157: Ramon Santiago, Rider
165: Frank Miele, Rider
174: Tristan Warner, ODU
184: John Paris, Binghamton
197: Cody Reed, Binghamton
285: Kevin Innes, BU

Coach of the Year
Tom Shifflett, Hofstra

Wrestler of the Year
James Nicholson, ODU

Freshman of the Year
John Paris, Binghamton