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Wrestling: Virginia lands six in NCAA Championships with effort at conference meet

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(© Michael Chamberlin – stock.adobe.com)

Six Virginia wrestlers turned in podium finishes, including three runner-up finishes, to lead the Cavaliers to a fourth-place finish at the ACC Championship on Sunday.

The six place-winners all secured bids to the NCAA Championships.

Jay Aiello at 197 pounds, Jake Keating at 165 pounds and Justin McCoy at 157 pounds all finished second in their weight classes. The trio of wrestlers all earned All-ACC honors by finishing in the top two at the event.

Three Cavaliers locked up third-place finishes: 133-pounder Louie Hayes, 125-pounder Patrick McCormick and heavyweight Quinn Miller.

Each of the three all rallied after losses in the semifinals to come back through the consolation bracket.

McCormick and Hayes, both seeded fourth in their weight classes, met the top-seeded wrestler in the semifinals.

Virginia will now await the announcement of the full field of individuals selected for the NCAA Championships on Wednesday when at-large selections and brackets are released by the NCAA at 6 p.m. ET in a selection show on NCAA.com.

“We had a lot of good things happen today,” UVA coach Steve Garland said. “We are excited for the six guys who punched through to the NCAA Championships and we are hopeful we can get more through the at-large bid process. But, overall we had way more positive things happen today than negative. Our team continues to improve collectively. Our guys are heartbroken because they really believed they could win, and whenever you walk out of a situation like this where you don’t reach your goals, it hurts.”

UVA at the ACC Championship

125: No. 4 seed Patrick McCormick

  • R1: McCormick dec. No. 5 seed Will Guida (UNC), 6-3
  • SF: No. 1 seed Sam Latona (VT) dec. McCormick, 12-7
  • Conso. SF: McCormick dec. No. 3 seed Colton Camacho (Pitt), 2-1
  • THIRD PLACE MATCH: McCormick dec. No. 5 seed Will Guida (UNC), 6-1

133: No. 4 seed Louie Hayes

  • R1: Hayes dec. No. 5 seed Jarrett Trombley (NCSU), 4-1
  • SF: No. 1 seed Micky Phillippi (Pitt) dec. Hayes, 10-3
  • Conso. SF: Hayes pinned No. 6 seed Drake Doolittle (Duke), 1:07
  • THIRD PLACE MATCH: Hayes dec. No. 5 seed Jarrett Trombley (NCSU), 3-2

141: No. 3 seed Brian Courtney

  • R1: Courtney major dec. No. 6 seed Patrick Rowland (Duke), 16-4
  • SF: No. 2 seed Zach Sherman (UNC) dec. Courtney, 7-2
  • Conso. SF: Courtney dec. No. 5 seed Sam Hillegas (VT), 7-2
  • THIRD PLACE MATCH: No. 4 seed Cole Matthews major dec. Courtney, 14-5

149: No. 5 seed Denton Spencer

  • R1: No. 4 seed Josh Finesilver (Duke) major dec. Spencer, 20-6
  • Conso. SF: No. 3 seed Ed Scott (NCSU) dec. Spencer, 10-4

157: No. 2 seed Justin McCoy

  • R1: Bye
  • SF: McCoy dec. No. 3 seed Connor Brady (VT), 8-6
  • FINAL: No. 1 seed Hayden Hidlay (NCSU) major dec. McCoy, 12-3

165: No. 3 seed Jake Keating

  • R1: Keating tech fall No. 6 seed Eric Carter (Duke), 18-2 (4:36)
  • SF: Keating advances by medical forfeit of No. 2 seed Mekhi Lewis (VT)
  • FINAL: No. 1 seed Jake Wentzel (Pitt) dec. Keating, 4-0

174: No. 3 seed Vic Marcelli

  • R1: Marcelli major dec. No. 6 seed Conor Becker (Duke), 12-4
  • SF: No. 2 seed Clay Lautt (UNC) dec. Marcelli, 8-3
  • Conso. SF: Marcelli dec. No. 5 seed Jared McGill (Pitt), 3-1
  • THIRD PLACE MATCH: No. 4 seed Cody Howard (VT) dec. Marcelli, 11-9 (sv-1)

184: No. 4 seed Michael Battista

  • R1: No. 5 seed Gregg Harvey (Pitt) dec. Battista, 3-2
  • Conso. SF: No. 3 seed Devin Kane (UNC) dec. Battista, 8-3

197: No. 2 seed Jay Aiello 

  • R1: Bye
  • SF: Aiello dec. No. 3 seed Max Shaw (UNC), 5-4
  • FINAL: No. 1 seed Nino Bonaccorsi (Pitt) dec. Aiello, 10-4

HWT: No. 2 seed Quinn Miller

  • R1: Bye
  • SF: No. 3 seed Hunter Catka (VT) dec. Miller, 4-3
  • Conso. SF: Miller dec. No. 5 seed Austin Cooley (Pitt), 8-6 (sv-1)
  • THIRD PLACE MATCH: Miller dec. No. 4 seed Andrew Gunning (UNC), 4-2

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