2013 CAA Wrestling Championship Preview
RICHMOND, Va. (March 7, 2013) - The 2013 CAA Wrestling Championship will be held Saturday, March 9 at Case Gymnasium on the campus of Boston University. Hofstra has captured the past two CAA titles and will be looking to win its 11th championship in the last 12 seasons.
The Pride, which was 6-15 overall and 4-2 in the CAA this season, features five nationally ranked wresters. Senior Steve Bonanno is the defending champion at 125 and comes into the tournament ranked No. 20 nationally. He has a 14-10 record, including a 6-0 mark in the CAA. The Pride also returns the defending champion at 141 in junior Luke Vaith, who sits at No. 16 in the national rankings with a 19-11 overall record and a 4-2 mark in the CAA.
Binghamton won the CAA championship in 2010 and was the runner-up a year ago. The Bearcats (5-13 overall, 3-3 in CAA) are led by senior 149-pounder Donnie Vinson, who was the 2012 CAA Wrestler of the Year. Vinson enters the championship with a league-best 27-1 overall record and is undefeated in dual (17-0) and CAA (6-0) meets. The Marathon, N.Y. native sits at No. 4 in the national rankings this season. Also making his presence felt for the Bearcats will be senior Nate Schiedel at 197. Schiedel comes into the meet ranked 5th in three national polls after compiling a 24-2 overall record and also holds undefeated marks in dual (17-0) and CAA competition (6-0).
Rider (10-8 overall, 3-3 in CAA) is looking to win its first CAA title after placing second in 2010 and 2011. The Broncs bring seven nationally ranked grapplers to the championship. Junior Ramon Santiago leads the way for Rider at 165 with a perfect 6-0 record in the CAA and a No. 16 national ranking. Also looking to pick up points for Rider at 184 will be freshman Ryan Wolfe, who comes into the meet with a 22-10 overall record, including a 5-1 mark against CAA competition.
Old Dominion enters the championship with six nationally ranked wrestlers vying for individual bids into the NCAA Championship. Freshman Chris Mecate is ranked No. 10 nationally at 141 and has compiled a 33-7 overall record including a 4-0 mark in the CAA. Junior Scott Festejo will be looking to defend his title at 133 and enters the meet ranked 26th nationally. The Monarchs are ineligible to compete for the 2013 team championship, but all of their wrestlers are eligible to compete for individual championships and bids into the NCAA Championship.
The CAA will be sending 19 wrestlers to the NCAA Wrestling Championship, including the 10 individual champions from the CAA Championship. The other nine bids will be at-large bids and will be made based on the following criteria: head-to-head competition, qualifying event placement, quality wins, results against common opponents, winning percentage, RPI, coaches' rankings and the number of matches contested at that weight class.
For more information on the 2013 CAA Wrestling Championship including the championship brackets, a full championship recap, championship highlights, live results, and the official program, visit the Championship Central page. Fans not in attendance at the championship can watch the event live and for free on CAA.TV starting at 10 a.m. Saturday morning.