No. 14 North Carolina opened its season Sunday with a 45-0 win over Gardner-Webb in Chapel Hill. Freshmen Julian Tagg and Gavin Kane won their first matches at UNC, while No. 1 Austin O'Connor began his season with a win via fall.
The Tar Heels (1-0) started fast against the Runnin' Bulldogs (0-3), with Tagg winning in his first time in a Carolina singlet, a decision over Austin Wadlow to put Carolina on the board out of the gate.
After the match at 125 pounds, Carolina won the next six matches by either technical fall or via pin. Redshirt sophomore Joe Heilmann and redshirt junior Zach Sherman both scored 21 points at 133 and 141 pounds respectively, setting up No. 1 Austin O'Connor to wrestle in his first match of his redshirt junior season. At 149 pounds, O'Connor wasted no time, pinning Jacson Muldrew in 47 seconds to boost the team score lead to 19-0.
Two redshirt seniors - Josh McClure and Kennedy Monday - both began their years with bonus points. McClure wrapped up a 16-0 tech fall over Chase McKinney before Monday pinned Austin Reames at 165 pounds in just 15 seconds. Both UNC wrestlers have been ranked in the top 20 across the country to begin the season.
Kane made a statement in his first match in Carolina Blue on Sunday, scoring a 16-0 tech fall win at 174 pounds.
Redshirt junior Chasen Blair, redshirt freshman Max Shaw and redshirt senior Andrew Gunning all notched wins to finish up the dual meet, helping Carolina to a 45-0 win to begin the dual meet season.
UNC and Gardner-Webb also wrestled extra countable matches on Sunday - the results of these matches can be found below.
125: Julian Tagg (UNC) dec. Austin Wadlow (GW), 7-0
133: Joe Heilmann (UNC) tech fall Todd Carter (GW), 21-6
141: No. 9 Zach Sherman (UNC) tech fall Conrad Schiess (GW), 21-3
149: No. 1 Austin O'Connor (UNC) pinned Jacson Muldrew (GW), 0:47
157: Josh McClure (UNC) tech fall Chase McKinney (GW), 16-0
165: No. 12 Kennedy Monday (UNC) pinned Austin Reames (GW), 0:15
174: Gavin Kane (UNC) tech fall Samuel Mora (GW), 16-0
184: Chasen Blair (UNC) dec. Evan Schenk (GW), 4-1
197: Max Shaw (UNC) maj. dec. Jack Trautman (GW), 16-6
285: Andrew Gunning (UNC) dec. Anthony Perrine (GW), 6-2
125: Wil Guida (UNC) pinned Aedyn Concepcion (GW), 5:25
133: Jaime Hernandez (UNC) inj. def. Todd Carter (GW)
141: Zach Sherman (UNC) tech fall Corbin Dion (GW), 21-6
149: Jackson Muldrew (GW) pinned Nick Lirette (UNC), 1:42
157: Josh McClure (UNC) pinned Christian Trimble (GW), 5:33
165: Sawyer Davidson (UNC) dec. Austin Reames (GW), 6-3
285: Brandon Whitman (UNC) pinned Gabriel Pickett (GW), 1:12
125: Wil Guida (UNC) pinned Austin Wadlow (GW), 1:56
157: Nick Lirette (UNC) maj. dec. Chase McKinney (GW), 15-7
285: Aydin Guttridge (UNC) pinned Gabriel Pickett (GW), 2:07
Carolina will host No. 8 Virginia Tech in Carmichael Arena on Friday, January 15 at 6:00 p.m. EST on the ACC Network. Further information about the dual meet will be posted this week on GoHeels.com and on Twitter (@uncwrestling).