Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Top Matches For Virginia Vs Pittsburgh (Fri Jan 21st, 2022)


ACC wrestling has grown exponentially over the years and I think by now it is safe to call the Atlantic Coast Conference a wrestling conference. Sure would be nice to see Boston College, Clemson, Florida State, Notre Dame, Wake Forest, Syracuse, Georgia Tech, & Miami restore their wrestling programs. It'd be nice to see Louisville get wrestling for the first time in the history of their athletics program. Yet, for the teams that do have wrestling, all of them fight hard to be competitive within the conference as well as the NCAA.  Dual wise four of the six ACC teams are ranked within the top 25 & tournament wise, three are ranked within the top twenty.  ACC wrestling is for real and we'll get a good glimpse of it on Friday night between the Virginia Cavaliers and the Pittsburgh Panthers. 

Here are the top matches of the night. 

125 - U.R. Patrick McCormick Vs #31 Gage Curry 

McCormick is probably the most unpredictable wrestle in NCAA DI wrestling. How he can go from one extreme to the other in such a short period of time defies science. I sometimes wonder if he's part of an alien or government experimentation because I swear the same wrestler I watched in one match can't possibly be the same wrestler I watched in another.  How in the H to E double L did he go from getting his gluteus maximus handed to him twice on Friday by Anthony Noto of Lock Haven & Fabian Gutierrez of Chattanooga to beating Joey Prata of Oklahoma on Saturday?  Seriously, how in the mmmph does that work?  What does this tell me? That against Curry, anything is possible.  Curry is an attacking wrestler, One who is always trying to score. It'll be hard to slow the pace down against him. 

133 - #24 Brian Courtney Vs #7 Micky Phillippi 

Phillippi hasn't been as dominant this season as I thought he would be, which poses well for Courtney and the Cavaliers. I cannot see Courtney pulling off an upset, but I can see him slowing Phillippi's offense down and keeping him at a respectable decision.  Scoring against the Panther will prove to be difficult, but keeping the match less than an 8 point spread? Very doable. 

141 - U.R. Dylan Cedano Vs #20 Cole Matthews

Riding a high of a recent 11-5 upset over Michigan's Stevan Micic, the last thing Cole Matthews wants to do is start overlooking anyone.  He should be able to pull off a solid decision against Cedano no problem, but Cedano is a pretty tough redshirt freshman who's already shown as he did in a 5-4 victory over North Carolina State's Kai Orine, that you never want to take him lightly. He'll capitalize upon any mistake that is made, so even though he's not currently ranked, might as well treat him as if he is. Cause he'll wrestle like he is. 

165 - #15 Justin McCoy Vs #13 Jake Wentzel

Granted, McCoy hasn't had the toughest schedule as of late, but he is 10-0 and in those 10 wins, he's looked very good. Better believe he's coming into this match with the goal of knocking off 2021's NCAA runner-up.  The 2021-2022 season has been a bit of a challenge for Wentzel.  He upset his way to the NCAA finals last season and the way things are going this year, if he makes it back to the NCAA finals it'll once again be through upsets. 9-4 on the season, he's hurting for a victory over a top 15 opponent. This win would do him a world of good as well. 

184 - #23 Michael Battista Vs #31 Gregg Harvey 

I was really happy to see Battista finally crack the top 33 within the most recent rankings. He's been wrestling his heart out lately and really deserved a spot. Hard fought victories of Matt Waddell of Chattanooga and Darian Roberts of Oklahoma, his place has been earned.  With that said, Gregg Harvey is one tough opponent and ironically enough, the two wrestle nearly the exact same style.  Between the two of them Battista owns a 3-2 victory and Harvey owns a 3-2 victory.  Look for a similar result here. 

197 - #11 Jay Aiello Vs #9 Nino Bonaccorsi 

A close 7-5 decision, other than that Bonaccorsi has more or less had his way with Aiello everytime they've stepped on the mat. A 10-4 decision and a 13-3 major decision in their other two meetings. As good a Aiello seems to wrestle at times, even against some top competition it doesn't seem right that he has such a difficult time on the mat with Bonaccorsi.  After a 4-0 victory over Jake Woodley of Oklahoma, it screams that he ought to be able to go out on the mat and be competitive with the Panther. It'll be interesting to see if he can, or if Bonaccorsi will rack up the points again. 

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