Bulldog Wrestling Kicks Off New Year at Southern Scuffle
Charleston, S.C. - The Citadel Wrestling team returns to action this weekend as it opens the New Year at the Southern Scuffle, Jan. 1-2, 2012, hosted by the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in the Mocs' McKenzie Arena. One of the largest in-season tournaments in the country, the Southern Scuffle welcomes 22 teams to the mat, with eight squads ranked in the NWCA/USA Today Division I Team Coaches Top-25.
Highlighted by fifth-ranked and defending NCAA Champion Penn State, the field also includes No. 3 Minnesota, No. 4 Cornell and No. 10 Missouri. Individually, 52 wrestlers are ranked in the latest Intermat Top-20, including 25 in the top-10 of their respected weight classes. Five of the 10 classes will have the No.1 ranked wrestler in the field, including Minnesota's Zach Sanders (125), Penn State's Frank Molinaro (149) and David Taylor (165) and Cornell's Kyle Drake (157) and Cam Simaz (197).
Tickets for the event are $15 for adults and $5 for youth under 18 each day. Tickets are on sale now on GoMocs.com and at the UTC Ticket Office. Doors open at 9:00 a.m. to the general public on Sunday, Jan. 1, with action beginning at 10:00 a.m. Competition begins one hour earlier on the Monday, Jan. 2, with doors opening at 8:00 a.m.
Brackets will be updated live online with links available on the wrestling schedule page of CitadelSports.com. The finals will be streamed live on the UTC athletics website through MocsVision on GoMocs.com.
LAST TIME OUT
Odie Delaney scored the only fall of the match and four other Citadel wrestlers scored decision victories as the Bulldogs captured their opening home dual meet of the season with 19-18 victory over North Carolina State at McAlister Field House on Dec. 17. Delaney scored a pin over the Wolfpack's Josh Davis at the 1:53 mark of the 285-pound bout to improve to 5-0 on the season. The six-point win turned an 11-9 deficit into a 15-11 advantage for the Bulldogs (1-3) that they would not relinquish. Kelby Smith improved to 4-0 in dual-meet action with a 5-2 decision over KaRonne Jones, while No. 17 Turtogtokh Luvsandorj improved to 10-4 on the season with a 5-2 decision over Quinton Godley in a rematch of their bout at the Nittany Lion Open on Dec. 4.
THE CITADEL PARTICIPANTS:
125: Richard Alarcon (8-9)
Alarcon faces off against Penn State's Nico Megaludis, ranked No. 13 in the country. The 125 bracket includes six ranked wrestlers, highlighted by No. 1 Zach Sanders from Minnesota.
133: Kyle Casaletto (10-5)
Casaletto takes on the winner of Indiana's Joe Duca and North Carolina State's Adam Matthews. Casaletto has rattled off five straight victories, including a 4-2 decision over Matthews in the Bulldogs' 19-18 dual meet victory over NC State. Casaletto will be tested against a group that includes five wrestlers ranked in the top 20.
141: Jordan Dix (9-10)
Dix will meet the winner of the top-seeded Mike Mangrum of Oregon State and Ohio's Darrin Boing. The 141 bracket features five ranked wrestlers, including Mangrum, who is ranked fifth.
149: David Ivashchenko (3-8)
Ivashchenko will square off against the second seed, Missouri's Kyle Bradley in his opening match. No. 1 Frank Molinaro of Penn State is the featured wrestler in the 149 bracket and is joined by four others ranked in the top-20, including Bradley at No. 14.
157: Pierre Frazile (10-8)
Frazile will meet the winner of the top-seeded and No. 1 Kyle Dake of Cornell and Ohio's Spartak Chino. Dake is one of three ranked wrestlers in the 157 bracket.
165: Mike Harper (1-8) and William Connell (0-2)
The Bulldogs send a pair of wrestlers into a 165 field that includes five ranked competitors. Penn State's David Taylor is No. 1 in the country and highlights this bracket. Connell will face the winner of Taylor and Gardner-Webb's Justin Guthrie. Harper is also in the top half of the bracket and will face Justin Staudenmayer of North Carolina.
174: #17 Turtogtukh Luvsandorj (10-4)
Luvsandorj enters a challenging 174 group has six ranked wrestlers, led by No. 2 Ed Ruth from Penn State. The No. 17 Luvsandorj faces Missouri's John Eblen in his opening match.
184: Jack Duane (4-7) and Luke Johnson (1-2)
Johnson and Duane represent the Bulldogs in a bracket that has four of the top-10 wrestlers in the nation and seven of the top-20. Johnson faces Duke's Diego Bencomo, while Duane takes the mat against Corbin Boone of Cleveland State, who defeated Duane in a 4-1 decision at the Wrestle for a Cure Duals on Nov. 12.
197: Kelby Smith (15-4)
Smith has won 11 of his last 13 bouts, including four wins at the Navy Classic to capture the title at 197. Smith will face Duke's Brian Self in his opening match. The 197 group has three of the top four in the nation and six from the top-20 overall.
285: Odie Delaney (5-0)
Delaney puts his perfect mark on the line against Missouri's Devon Mellon in his opening bout. The top-four seeds in the heavyweight bracket are all in the top-10, including No. 4 Clayton Jack (Oregon State), No. 5 Jeremy Johnson (Ohio), No. 7 Tony Nelson (Minnesota) and No. 8 Cameron Wade (Penn State).
A recap and results will follow the Southern Scuffle after action has completed each evening. For more information on Bulldog Wrestling, visit the official website of The Citadel Athletics at www.CitadelSports.com.