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Captures 157-Pound Title at the Midlands Championship; First Midlands Title for a Wolfpack Wrestler
GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) — NC State senior Tommy Gantt was named the ACC Wrestler of the Week after winning six straight matches--including two against nationally-ranked opponents--in the 157-pound weight class and becoming the Wolfpack’s first individual champion at the Midlands Championships in Evanston, Illinois.
The Wolfpack later picked up a second title at the Midlands as heavyweight Nick Gwiazdowski took the 285-pound title.
Gantt, from Cahokia, Illinois, is ranked sixth nationally this week by InterMat. He captured four straight dominant decisions in the early rounds of the Midlands which included a fall of Jared Sharenbrock of Wisconsin; a technical fall (19-3) over Nick Masselli of Princeton; a major decision over Edwin Cooper of Iowa; and a 12-6 decision over Oliver Pierce of Arizona State.
He then captured the Midlands crown by defeating 15th-ranked Chad Walsh of Rider (6-4, SV-1) and seventh-ranked Cody Pack of South Dakota State (4-2).
Gantt improved his record to 12-0 on the year, and is 3-0 against ranked foes. Nine of his 12 wins have resulted in bonus points for the Wolfpack.
Gantt was chosen over a strong field that included Duke’s Mitch Finesilver (149), North Carolina’s Evan Henderson (149), Pitt’s Dom Forys (133), Virginia’s George DiCamillo (133) and Virginia Tech’s Joey Dance (125).
Finesilver, a sophomore from Greenwood Village, Colorado, who is ranked 20th nationally this week, won four of six matches en route to a fifth-place finish at the Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Finesilver defeated three ranked opponents at the Scuffle, defeating sixth-ranked C.J. Cobb of Penn (10-6), 20th-ranked Pat Lugo of Edinboro (3-1) and 12th-ranked Anthony Collica of Oklahoma State (10-8).
Henderson, a senior from New Florence, Pennsylvania, who is ranked sixth nationally this week, captured five of his six matches at the Southern Scuffle, losing only to No. 1-ranked Zain Retherford of Penn State (17-1) in the championship match, to post a second-place finish. Henderson defeated Duke’s Finesilver (5-2) to reach the championship round.
Forys, a sophomore from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who is ranked 17th nationally this week, captured the championship at the Lock Haven Classic Tournament by winning four straight matches to improve to 14-1 on the year, including a technical fall (20-5) over 22nd-ranked John Edwards of Indiana. Forys and his Panther teammates were competing in the Lock Haven Classic due to inclement weather which forced them to miss the Midlands Championships.
DiCamillo, a junior from Highland Heights, Ohio, who is ranked fifth nationally this week, won five of his six matches at the Southern Scuffle, including a win over 19th-ranked Josh Martinez of Air Force, to place third. DiCamillo’s only loss of the tournament was a narrow, 6-5, decision to sixth-ranked Jordan Conaway of Penn State.
Dance, a junior from Christiansburg, Virginia, who is ranked third nationally by InterMat this week, led the Hokies to a 32-11 win over George Mason by recording a technical fall (17-1) over Ibrahim Banduka in Fairfax, Va.
All six wrestlers will be competing in the 2016 Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestling Championship which will be hosted by the University of Virginia on Sunday, March 6. The one-day tournament, which will take place at the John Paul Jones Arena Center in Charlottesville, Va., will begin at 11 a.m.
2015-16 ACC Wrestlers of the Week
Nov. 10—Ty Walz, Virginia Tech (285)
Nov. 17—Solomon Chishko, Virginia Tech (141)
Nov. 24—Mikey Racciato, Pitt (141)
Dec. 8—Nick Gwiazdowski, NC State (285) and
Ty Walz, Virginia Tech (285)
Dec. 16—Dom Forys, Pitt (133)
Jan. 5—Tommy Gantt, NC State (157)