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Hokie Grappler Upsets Second-Ranked Matt Brown of Penn State
GREENSBORO, N.C.—Virginia Tech redshirt freshman Zach Epperly is the Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestler of the Week after leading the sixth-ranked Hokies to a near upset at fourth-ranked Penn State last week.
Epperly, from Christiansburg, Va., is 10-2 on the season in the 174-pound weight class after defeating Penn State’s Matt Brown, 8-6 in sudden victory. Brown is currently ranked second nationally at 174 and is the 2013 NCAA runner-up in that weight class. Epperly was ranked ninth nationally in last week’s InterMat national rankings.
The win by Epperly and one by the Hokies’ Austin Gable gave Tech a 15-14 lead in the match, but Tech dropped the match at 197 and a very close decision at heavyweight to fall to the unbeaten Nittany Lions.
Epperly earned ACC Wrestler of the Week honors over Duke sophomore 184-pounder Jacob Kasper and NC State junior and defending national champion heavyweight Nick Gwiazdowski.
Kasper (Lexington, Ohio) captured three matches in leading the Blue Devils to a trio of dual meet wins in third annual Grapple at the Garden in New York City, including wins over Northern Iowa (21-16), George Mason (24-9) and Maryland (24-9). The Blue Devils’ 24 points against the Terrapins tied for the second-most in the 70 meetings between the two programs as Kasper scored five team points for a technical fall (21-5).
Gwiazdowski (Delanson, N.Y.), ranked No. 2 nationally, remained unbeaten on the season in 16 matches by posting a 15-6 major decision over 19th-ranked (FloWrestling) Denzel Dejournette of Appalachian State in leading the Wolfpack to a 29-12 victory.
The 2015 Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestling Championships will be held Sunday, March 8 at the Petersen Events Center on camps at Pitt in Pittsburgh, Pa. All tickets are general admission and are priced $10 for adults, $5 for youth and seniors, with all ACC students admitted free with a valid institutional ID.