It’s not a super busy week in the ACC, but there are some high-level duals on tap within the conference. Duke and UNC are off this week and Pitt has sent some starters to the F&M Open. UVA will “host” a tri with Gardner-Webb and George Mason at the ARMS Duals at St. Christopher’s School in Richmond on Saturday--I will preview some matches to watch once I get the final lineups.
The biggest matchups will be on Friday and Sunday with two top-10 duals. On Sunday, the Hokies (#11 Dual #10 Tourney) will travel to New York to face Cornell (#8 Dual #8 Tourney); we will break that dual down later this weekend.
The big one on tap for this evening will be NC State (#7 Dual #2 Tourney) hosting Oklahoma State (#10 Dual #6 Tourney) to open their home slate at Reynolds Coliseum. If we see both teams at full strength, there could be 10 ranked versus ranked matchups, including top-10 matchups at 133, 141, and 184. Though this time of year between injuries and illnesses, we seem to have several “OR”s listed on the probable lineups. Regardless of the final lineups, this dual will have fireworks from the opening whistle.
125: #17 Jakob Camacho OR Jarrett Trombley v #20 Troy Spratley OR Sam Smith
Camacho is looking to bounce back from a rough showing at the Collegiate Duals and a scrappy Troy Spratley would be a good place to start.
133: #5 Kai Orine v #3 Daton Fix OR Reece Witcraft
Orine has looked better every time he has stepped onto the mat this year. Fix only has two matches this season, but as we well know, he is one of the best wrestlers in the country. I would love to see these two get after it, it has absolute fireworks potential.
141: #4 Ryan Jack v #7 Tagen Jamison OR Sammy Alvarez
Jack has quietly put together an impressive season, as has Jamison. Contrasting styles but this will be an important bout for the Pack to get some momentum.
149: #3 Jackson Arrington v #19 Jordan Williams
Arrington continues to impress. He has incredible poise and mat presence for being a true sophomore. Williams can be explosive and dangerous, but I think Arrington is able to avoid being phased by that.
157: #5 Ed Scott v #23 Teague Travis
After a slower start to the season, Ed Scott has been on a tear. He is looking to continue that run against Teague Travis.
165: #18 Derek Fields OR AJ Kovacs v #2 Izzak Olejnik OR Joey Sanchez
A double “OR” at 165. I’m hopeful we get to see Olejnik, he is so fun to watch and will be a very tough test for whoever the Pack sends out.
174: #31 Alex Faison v #28 Brayden Thompson
This is a big toss-up match and could have major implications on how this dual shakes out. The Pack will be looking to the veteran Faison for a big win in his home debut this season.
184: #5 Dylan Fishback OR Brock Delsignore v #3 Dustin Plott
This is the match I have had circled. Fishback has put together an incredible redshirt freshman campaign but will face a very tough and experienced Dustin Plott. I actually like the style matchup in favor of Fishback, he is relentless, but Plott can be tough to score on and finds ways to win tight matches.
197: #4 Trent Hidlay v #12 Luke Surber OR Jersey Robb
The soon-to-be mayor of Raleigh, Trent Hidlay, will be looking for a big win to open his final season at home for the Pack. We have come to expect Hidlay to be in the hunt for bonus points in every bout, I don’t see this one any differently.
285: #16 Owen Trephan OR Isaac Trumble v #11 Konnor Doucet
I wondered if this one would be listed as an option for the Pack. Isaac Trumble has been in redshirt, opening 197 for Hidlay for his final season. Trumble has been wrestling on the freestyle circuit--winning a U23 World Championship at 97kg. He is coming off winning the Midlands title at 285 last week. As it stands, he is still in redshirt…
The Pack has a solid starter in Trephan who was an ACC Champion and NCAA qualifier last year. I like this matchup for Trephan and it could be a big win for him if he is able to take out Doucet.
I’m very pumped for this dual, the atmosphere at Reynolds is always amazing and they will have a sell-out crowd tonight. I’m about to hit the road to Raleigh myself so I can see this one in person.