No. 24 Virginia Downs Maryland, Southern Virginia At Cavalier Duals

uva wrestlingThe No. 24 Virginia wrestling team (2-0) opened the season with a pair of strong performances on Saturday (Nov. 2), powering to wins in dual matches with Southern Virginia (0-2) and Maryland (1-1) at the Cavalier Duals.

Virginia opened the day with a 50-3 victory over Southern Virginia before closing the day with a 34-6 victory over Maryland.

“It’s always great to start our season off wrestling at home in front of our fans at Mem Gym,” said Virginia head coach Steve Garland. “Overall it was a really good day. We talk about process goals a lot and measuring ourselves by how we progress toward our ultimate goals. We took some big steps forward and look better today than we did just two weeks ago. We preach a lot about approach, our mentality and the way we want to compete, and we saw a lot of that translate on the mat today.”

In its first dual of the day, Virginia got bonus-point victories at nine weight classes on the way to the victory over the Knights. It included four wins by fall, four tech falls and a forfeit. The Knights got the one victory of the dual in the final bout of the day by decision to get on the board.

In the day’s second match, the Cavaliers again powered to the victory with pins from second-ranked Jack Mueller (Dallas, Texas) at 125 pounds, ninth-ranked Jay Aiello (Chantilly, Va.) at 197 pounds and Quinn Miller (Lilburn, Ga.) at heavyweight. Louie Hayes (Orland Park, Ill.) added a major decision at 133 pounds for the fourth bonus-point win of the dual.

Mueller started things with a strong performance, notching a first-period pin to set the tone for the match. It was followed by the major decision from Hayes to give the Cavaliers the 10-0 lead in the dual score.

Virginia then ground out wins in four of the next five weight classes with hard-fought decisions coming from Brian Courtney (Sayre, Pa.) at 141 pounds, Justin McCoy (New Paris, Pa.) at 157 pounds, Cam Coy (Jeannette, Pa.) at 165 pounds and Victor Marcelli (Massillon, Ohio) at 174 pounds. Each wrestler won their bout by two points or fewer.

Courtney claimed his 2-0 victory with a second-period reversal, while McCoy defended a one-point lead down the stretch for his 7-6 decision. Coy used a late escape and riding time to take the 6-4 decision, while Marcelli used a third-period reversal and almost two minutes of riding time to take a 3-1 decision.

Virginia then closed out the dual with back-to-back pins from Aiello and Miller.

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