N.C. State takes home the conference title
Led by ACC champions Tariq Wilson, Hayden Hidlay, Daniel Bullard, Trent Hidlay, and Deonte Wilson, the N.C. State Wolfpack won their third consecutive ACC title. The Wolfpack came into the tournament as the No. 2 team in the conference after dropping a dual earlier in the year on criteria to the Virginia Tech Hokies, but Sunday night was all about the Pack.
The Hidlay brothers headlined the success of the team, with Hayden winning his fourth conference title in as many years and the younger Hidlay, Trent, winning his first title in sudden victory. Both will aim to carry this success into the 2021 NCAA tournament and chase their first national titles.
N.C. State’s consistent success in every final matchup is what helped separate the Pack from their opponents, and this performance sends a national message: N.C. wants a team trophy in St. Louis, so watch out.
No. 1 Sam Latona defends his seed and beats No. 2 Jakob Camacho
OVERTIME 2: Latona wins 2-1
Latona's rideout proves to be the difference. SAM LATONA IS AN ACC CHAMPION AT 125 POUNDS!
OVERTIME 1: Latona leads 2-1
Latona escapes, he's starting to feel this match. Camacho goes for a shot, and scrambles but time runs out again. The clock has been the enemy for both athletes tonight.
SUDDEN VICTORY: Tied 1-1
Latona with an early shot, Camacho responds, and they're scrambling. Camacho looks to have the upper hand as thirty seconds pass. Latona repositions and looks for his points. Camacho rolls through and just barely escapes the exact scenario that trapped him earlier this year. Here we go...overtime!
THIRD PERIOD: Tied 1-1
Latona takes down to start the third. Deonte Wilson won his bout on a rideout, but that won't be the case for Camacho as Latona escapes. Shot attempts follow, but no points are scored. One minute remaining. Latona puts the pressure on, but Camacho is wrestling smart with good mat awareness. Ten seconds remaining. Camacho works for the takedown, but time runs out.
SECOND PERIOD: Camacho leads 1-0
Camacho takes bottom to start the second and picks up the escape to put a point on the board, but Latona was able to put 38 seconds of riding time up as well. Despite the talent of these athletes, neither has scored a takedown. Ten seconds remaining. It all comes down to the third period.
FIRST PERIOD: Scoreless
There's a lot of emotion on the line here. Camacho wants to defend his title and prove he can beat Latona, and Latona wants to prove the dual win wasn't a fluke. A scoreless first period between these two stars.
Defending ACC champion Jakob Camacho will take on No. 1 seed Sam Latona in a rematch of this year's dual rivalry. Latona beat Camacho earlier this year to help Virginia Tech clinch the ACC regular season title, but now Camacho has his chance for redemption. Follow along for live updates from this bout at 7 p.m. ET.
Deonte Wilson tops Hunter Catka in the heavyweight championship bout
OVERTIME: Wilson wins 2-1 after a tough rideout
Wilson takes bottom to start the first 30-second periods. Wilson escapes after a good effort from Catka. Virginia Tech's Catka now takes bottom for his turn. A second caution call is given to Catka. Twenty seconds left. Catka works for the escape, but Wilson was hard-nosed and held him down. Nine seconds left. Time expires.
DEONTE WILSON IS THE ACC CHAMPION AT 285 POUND!
SUDDEN VICTORY: Tied 1-1
Deja vu here as Catka takes the shot and Wilson muscles his way to a takedown attempt as time expires. Heading to overtime.
THIRD PERIOD: Tied 1-1
If Wilson holds down Catka, the match will be his. Ninety seconds to go. Catka escapes. We're all tied up 1-1. One minute remaining. Catka takes a shot, but, again, Wilson's too tough defensively. Wilson drives Cakta to the edge of the match, drawing a stalling call against Catka. Twenty seconds left. Catka with a shot, but aggressive action from Wilson stops the move and goes for the takedown at the whistle. The call is challenged. No takedown.
SECOND PERIOD: Wilson leads 1-0
Wilson starts down in the second period and picks up an early escape. These two men are particularly cautious despite the efforts at action in the first period. Thirty seconds remain. The only point on the board so far is Wilson's escape, as we move into the third.
FIRST PERIOD: Scoreless
Deonte Wilson has embraced the closing role for the Wolfpack, but he won't be the last guy to go today, as Jakob Camacho will wrap things up at 125 pounds. He's aiming to be N.C. State's fifth champion in as many matches, but his opponent, freshman Hunter Catka looks comfortable against the Wolfpack big man. Ninety seconds remain. Catka takes the first shot, but Wilson defends him and looks for a chance to take his own shot. No score.
Nino Bonaccorsi wins 10-4 against No. 2 Jay Aiello
THIRD PERIOD: Bonaccorsi wins 10-4
Aiello escapes to narrow Bonaccorsi’s lead, but this has been all Bonaccorsi. Bonaccorsi notches two more to extend his lead to 9-4, and his riding time still sits at well over 90 seconds. Another takedown would give Bonaccorsi bonus, but he has only 15 seconds left. It’s a decision, but it’s Bonaccorsi’s decision.
NINO BONACCORSI IS AN ACC CHAMPION!
In last year's ACC final, Pitt's Nino Bonaccorsi fell to Virginia Tech's Hunter Bolen at 184 pounds while Jay Aiello ran through the 197-pound bracket for his title. Now, Bonaccorsi is up a weight, ready to take on the champ and redeem himself after a 7-5 loss earlier this season. Bonaccorsi has momentum on his side with a strong win over Reenan of N.C. State while Aiello is staying relaxed and wrestling with ease. These two athletes are familiar with these championship stage and will be expected to put on a show.
No. 2 Trent Hidlay tops Hunter Bolen
SUDDEN VICTORY: Hidlay wins 3-1
Stall warning on Hidlay. Ten seconds. Hidlay takes a shot, and he scores. TRENT HIDLAY IS AN ACC CHAMPION!
THIRD PERIOD: Tied dual 1-1
Hilday chooses bottom to start the third. An escape will equalize the score, and Hidlay picks up the point after a mat return from Bolen. One minute remaining. Bolen looked to have created something on the edge, potentially back points, but the wrestlers move out of bounds. Bolen has 16 seconds of riding time, but, again, that amount won't make a difference. Ten seconds remaining, and Hidlay nearly scores on a go-behind, but time expires, and we head to sudden victory again.
SECOND PERIOD: Bolen leads 1-0
Bolen starts the second period down, and Hidlay holds him down. Hidlay knows an escape from Bolen could be the difference in the match, so he's working to prevent any points, but Bolen prevails. The Virginia Tech defending champ leads 1-0. One minute remains.
Bolen is working for some action after his stall call, but neither athlete has been able to score a takedown. Thirty seconds left. Hidlay shoots in on a low single, but only ten seconds remain, and he can't finish before the period ends.
FIRST PERIOD: Scoreless
The rivalry continues. Hidlay goes for a double leg immediately, but Bolen's defense is too strong. The young Wolfpack wrestler is muscling his way through these early seconds of the match, moving Bolen around the match with ease. Both wrestlers battle in the handfight in the middle of the period as they both look for opportunities, but nothing yet, score wise. . A stalemate brings them back to center, and the fight continues. Hidlay forces a stall count against Bolen, and the first period ends scoreless.
The ACC is filled with great rivalries and matchups, but what makes this particularly final unique is that these two athletes both have the potential to be NCAA finalists and champions, making this bout a potential preview of what's to come in St. Louis. Virginia Tech's Hunter Bolen is 9-0 on the year with a 2-1 decision against Trent already this year, and he's never lost to the Wolfpack sophomore. All of his wins, however, have been by two points or less. This dual will have major NCAA tournament rankings implications, and the champ will also affect the team race. Everything is on the line, and it's live at 7 p.m. on the ACC Network.
No. 1 Daniel Bullard tops No. 2 Clay Lautt in sudden victory
SUDDEN VICTORY: Bullard wins 4-2 in sudden victory
Bullard looks to control the early scramble, and it all comes down to this. Bullard earns the takedown, and he is the 2021 ACC CHAMPION!
The call is challenged, but the call stands. Bullard becomes N.C. State's third conference champion of the night.
2021 ACC Champion - R-Sr. Daniel Bullard— NC State Wrestling 🤼♂️ (@PackWrestle) March 1, 2021
An OT win for his 1st career ACC Championship! Bullard and Lautt of UNC go into OT, but Bullard scrambles for the winning takedown 34 seconds into OT!#PackMentality // #DoubleDown pic.twitter.com/2RqcEM2JcU
THIRD PERIOD: All tied up, 2-2
Bullard took bottom to start the third and escaped, tying the score at 2-2. These guys have been battling tough on their feet, pushing one another and competing hard, despite the low score. Thirty seconds left. Bullard goes in for a low shot, but Lautt holds him off. Fifteen seconds. Stalemate. Ten seconds. Lautt has 16 seconds of riding time, but it's not enough. We're heading to sudden victory!
SECOND PERIOD: Lautt holds his 2-1 advantage
No significant score changes in the second, as Lautt holds his 2-1 lead
FIRST PERIOD: Lautt lead 2-1
Clay Lautt earns the first two points of the dual with a takedown on the edge, but Bullard escapes. Lautt looks quick for his size, but Bullard isn't biting on any of Lautt's fakes. Bullard looks solid on his feet, wrestling smart and controlled, despite the efforts of Lautt to pick up the pace.
Just like 141 pounds, the 174-pound ACC championship features a No. 1-seeded Wolfpack wrestler looking for his first title and a No. 2-seeded Tar Heel looking to defend his championship. Daniel Bullard and Clay Lautt both make their return to the finals after solid semifinal wins, and they'll meet for the third time in their careers tonight at 7 p.m. Bullard won the first match in last year's dual, while Lautt won the match in the tournament last year. It's the kind of rivalry we all love, and it all starts tonight at 7 p.m. ET on ACC Network.
No. 1 Jake Wentzel repeats as ACC champion with 3-0 win over No. 3 Jake Keating
THIRD PERIOD: Wentzel wins 4-0
Keating gives Wentzel the escape, and Wentzel takes advantage of it and picks up two more points and gets back on top. This match has been all about Wentzel's ride. Less than a minute remaining, and Wentzel has a 3-0 lead. He's looking for backpoints, while Keating is looking to make something happen on bottom. Wentzel stays on top for the entire duration of the third period after his escape for over three minutes of riding time.
JAKE WENTZEL IS AN ACC CHAMPION...AGAIN
Keating chooses down to start the second, and Wentzel picks him up and puts him down for a mat return. Keating strives to roll out, but Wentzel stays on top of him. He rode Keating for the entire two minutes.
FIRST PERIOD: Scoreless
Jake Wentzel looks to make the first move, holding Keating's leg up and working calmly for the move he wants. Wentzel works him back to the center and drives down, but Keating responds and pulls Wentzel to his back. No points were awarded and the scramble continues. The ref calls a stalemate, and the guys go back to the middle, but the scramble showcased the kind of action that could be coming in this match.
2020 ACC Champion Jake Wentzel is back in the finals for a second year, and he'll look to defend his title against Virginia's Jake Keating. Wentzel is 1-0 against Keating and majored him in their only meeting. The edge belongs to Wentzel of Pitt, but Keating has strung together an impressive season with an 8-2 record at a deep weight, so this will be a fun final to watch.
Hayden Hidlay is a four-time ACC champ at 157 pounds
THIRD PERIOD: Hidlay wins 12-3 in major decision fashion over McCoy
Hidlay lets McCoy pick up the escape, and he goes to work on another shot. He takes him down for anther two points and extends his lead to 9-2. With riding time, he has bonus locked up. Hidlay now looks to turn McCoy on the edge, but McCoy tried to scramble out the hold before going out of bounds. McCoy escapes, so Hidlay needs another takedown for bonus now, and he's close. Ten seconds left, and he gets the last takedown. That's four ACC titles for Hayden Hidlay.
2021 ACC Champion - R-Sr. Hayden Hidlay— NC State Wrestling 🤼♂️ (@PackWrestle) March 1, 2021
Hidlay scores his 4th straight ACC title. He scored all five takedowns in the bout, the final one with 10 seconds left paired with 2:20 of RT for the 12-3 major dec. over #16 McCoy of UVA.#PackMentality // #DoubleDown pic.twitter.com/1YPRmiVR6k
SECOND PERIOD: Hidlay leads 7-1
Hidlay chooses bottom to start the second and picks up an escape in the first ten seconds. McCoy, despite trailing 5-1 with a minute left, has looked good against the best in the country. Hidlay picks up two more on the edge, and he's clearly looking for bonus. Hidlay's never lost to an ACC opponent, and if he wrestles in St. Louis like he's wrestling now, he could put himself in title contention, of course, and the perhaps even the Hodge Trophy conversation. The N.C. State senior ends the period with nearly two minutes of riding time.
FIRST PERIOD: Hidlay leads 4-1
Hidlay has controlled the circle early. He wants McCoy to know that this is his house. The first scramble leads to a flurry of action and great wrestling, but neither wrestler can gain control. Hidlay swings around for the first two after nearly thirty seconds of of mat wrestling. While working for potentially turning his takedown into back points, McCoy escapes to bring the score to 2-1, but Hidlay responds with another takedown on a reattack. A mat return and a rideout helps Hidlay end the period on top, 4-1.
Hidlay has never lost an ACC dual match or an ACC final, and Justin McCoy will aim to break that streak tonight at 7 p.m. McCoy has lost all three of his matches against Hidlay, but he's closed the gap a little more each time, dropping 13-1 in the 2020 dual, 11-2 in the ACC finals last year and 6-3 in the dual. Hidlay is tough and experienced, so he's the clear favorite in this matchup, but if McCoy can keep it close, he could make this interesting.
No. 1 Austin O'Connor wins another ACC title at 149 pounds
THIRD PERIOD: Austin O'Connor wins 149 pounds 10-8
O'Connor escapes and immediately looks for a takedown. Andonian called for locking hands, giving O'Connor his first lead of the night. Andonian responds with a shot and then another, but O'Connor fends them off and finds a takedown of his own. He has a 10-8 lead with 45 seconds.
Thirty seconds left.
AUSTIN O'CONNOR WINS 141 POUNDS!
SECOND PERIOD: Andonian leads 7-6
Andonian chooses down to start the second, and O'Connor lets him up to start neutral, giving Andonian the escape point to bring the score to 7-4. Andonian goes in for a shot, but his efforts lead to a stalemate. O'Connor looks for another throw, but this time he was ready. No points.
A shot from O'Connor turns into another throw opportunity, and he picks up two. O'Connor wrestled with the authority of the No. 1-ranked wrestler. He knows his moves, and he's comfortable finding his spots to make those moves work for him. What a period from O'Connor.
FIRST PERIOD: Andonian leads 6-4
Austin O'Connor slipped on the mat and nearly gave up a takedown, but he recovered and transitioned nicely into a double, launching a scramble that leaned in favor of Andonian. Virginia Tech's Andonian rolls O'Connor over for back points to take a six-point lead over No. 1 O'Connor. Carolina's O'Connor escapes.
The two wrestlers hand fight, but then O'Connor goes for a throw and finishes. He picks up two takedown points to bring the score to 6-4 to start the second.
Like all of the ACC finalists so far, Austin O'Connor and Bryce Andonian are familiar with one another, having just wrestled each other on January 30. O'Connor has won in all three of their meetings in the past and beat Andonian 11-4 in their most recent matchup. North Carolina's O'Connor will no doubt have the edge in this championship bout, but we'll be watching at 7 p.m. to see how Andonian fights.
Tariq Wilson wins the ACC championship rematch at 141 pounds
THIRD PERIOD: Wilson wins 10-1
Sherman chooses neutral after Wilson rode him for the last minute of the second period. Sherman doesn't look too discouraged. He's looking for space, moving his feet and holding the pace. Thirty seconds remaining.
Wilson takes advantage of a weak shot by Sherman and repositions himself for the reattack and two more points on a takedown. Sherman gives up a penalty point, but Wilson rides him out for the last ten seconds.
TARIQ WILSON IS AN ACC CHAMP!
2021 ACC Champion - R-Sr. Tariq Wilson— NC State Wrestling 🤼♂️ (@PackWrestle) March 1, 2021
By BONUS POINTS, Wilson takes out #9 Sherman of UNC with a 10-1 major decision at 141 pounds. A huge second period, Wilson put up seven points with a pair of near falls!#PackMentality // #DoubleDown pic.twitter.com/BGbVHGTve3
SECOND PERIOD: Wilson leads 7-0
Wilson starts the first period on bottom and picks up an early escape within the first ten seconds to put the first points on the board. Wilson then goes for a major scramble and picks up back points. He leads 5-0 with thirty seconds remaining in the second period. He's been a monster on top, picking up two more back points. Wilson continues to control Sherman on top and racks up his riding time just over a minute.
FIRST PERIOD: Scoreless
Lots of flurries but no score yet. The wrestlers are moving speedy and free, looking ready and fired up for this fast-paced dual. Thirty seconds left and no score. The level changes stand out — these guys have some serious agility.
Tariq Wilson and Zach Sherman are back in the finals for the second straight year, with No. 2 Wilson chasing the opportunity to stand on top of the podium for the first time. Wilson lost to Sherman in the ACC finals last year but beat him in the dual this season, setting up a great match between these two competitors. Sherman has competed against Wilson six times, and the only time he's left victorious against the Wolfpack junior is in last year's final. Who will take home the title this year? Tune in at 7 p.m. to find out.
Korbin Myers beats Micky Phillippi for the 133-pound ACC Title
THIRD PERIOD: Myers wins 3-1
Myers starts down, Phillippi returns him to the mat. Myers is out, but Phillippi cut down on the riding time. Myers leads 3-1 with 1:30 to go.
Myers looks for a go-behind, but Phillippi counters. Phillippi's defense has been strong, but he needs a takedown now to win. Thirty seconds left.
The pace has increased, but nothing yet for Phillippi. Ten seconds remaining.
KORBIN MYERS IS AN ACC CHAMPION!
SECOND PERIOD: Myers leads 2-1
Phillippi starts the period on bottom, but Myers starts with a mat return to improve his confidence and rack up riding time. Phillippi works for the escape, but Myers isn't giving up those points. One minute left in the period.
Phillippi escapes, and they're back on their feet. Myers has 1:12 of riding time.
FIRST PERIOD: Myers leads 2-0
Myers is in on a shot early and looks to pick up two on an trip, but Phillippi impresses with his confidence and solid defense. Phillippi's ability to wrestle on the edge and prevent the takedown was critical. Scoreless after the first attack.
Myers is working to drive the action, but Phillippi's strength is evident. Both wrestlers look calm, striving to wrestle their own match. Another shot by Myers, and he's back to where he wanted to be on the first attack, but he finishes for two.
The 2021 ACC Finals will start at 133 pounds and end with 125 pounds
Pittsburgh's Micky Phillippi will look to defend his ACC title for the second time, but Virginia Tech's Korbin Myers is a serious opponent who has beaten Micky Phillippi in the past. The two wrestlers have battled four times, with Phillippi picking up wins on three occasions. All of the bouts were close, and there's no doubt that this one will be a battle as well. Full results, live updates and analysis to come at 7 p.m.
Live updates: ACC Tournament Semifinals
The semifinals are set! Watch the next round of wrestling action on ACCX or follow along here for live updates.
125 Pounds: Sam Latona and Jakob Camacho set for rematch in the 125-pound ACC finals after semis wins
- No. 2 Jakob Camacho majors No. 6 Logan Agin: The 125-pound Wolfpack sophomore found his rhythm in the second period to put the first points on the board and then ramped up his offense in the third for a 10-1 bonus-point win in his second ACC tournament. Camacho will see either No. 1 Sam Latona or No. 4 Patrick McCormick in the finals.
- Latona takes down McCormick with ease: No. 1 Sam Latona earned his spot opposite Camacho with a 12-7 decision against Patrick McCormick of Virginia. Latona put up six points in the first period and kept his foot on the gas for the entire duration of the match. He'll have a chance now to take on the defending ACC champ in a dual that could have team race implications.
133 pounds: Micky Phillippi and Korbin Myers to meet in ACC finals at 133 pounds
- Micky Phillippi wins to advance to the finals: The Pittsburgh junior took down Virginia's Louie Hayes in a dominant 10-4 decision to book a ticket to another ACC championship. Phillippi has never lost in an ACC final, and he's the man to beat at the weight.
- Korbin Myers wants a chance at the title: With a workmanlike 10-3 decision, Virginia Tech senior Korbin Myers punched his ticket to the finals as well. His win over Joe Heilmann puts him 7-0 on the year, and he'll aim to keep that undefeated record alive in this conference championship bout.
141 pounds: In-state rivals Tariq Wilson and Zach Sherman set to compete in 141-pound finals
- Wilson secures his third consecutive ACC finals match: Tariq Wilson Wilson jumped out to an early 2-0 lead and picked up two more with a reversal but adding even more points in third period on his way to a 7-2 win over Cole Matthews. He'll now have a chance at his first ACC title against last year's champ.
- Sherman's power and persistence puts him back in the finals: Zach Sherman wrestled conservative in the first and second period but turned it on in the third to extend his lead from 3-2 to 7-2. The defending ACC champion is back in the finals with his solid decision over No. 3 Brian Courtney.
149 pounds: Andonian and O'Connor will face off for the second time this season in the 149-pound finals
- Calm and collected, O'Connor notches another win: Defending ACC champion Austin O'Connor wrestled a strategic 7-2 decision against Josh Finesilver of Duke to book his ticket back to the championship bout. O'Connor is undefeated on the year and in the conversation for the Hodge Trophy if he keeps up his bonus rate of 83.3% and doesn't lose a match.
- Tech puts another wrestler in the finals as Andonian competes to seed: Bryce Andonian controlled the pace of the match with an first-period takedown off the whistle and a series of additional takedown in the early minutes. His speed and strength proved too much for N.C. State's Ed Scott who dropped the match 12-6. Andonian will meet North Carolina's Austin O'Connor in the finals.
157 pounds: Hayden Hidlay has a chance to be a four-time champ
- Hayden Hidlay is as dominant as we expected: The three-time ACC champion is back in the finals after a wild 21-6 technical fall victory against No. 4 Josh McClure in the semifinals. Hidlay, a senior, put up four takedowns in the final period to seal the win and add major bonus points for his team. He's the third Wolfpack wrestler to qualify for the finals.
- Justin McCoy holds on for a big win: Virginia Tech's No. 3 Connor Brady fought tough against the tournament's second seed, but McCoy was too tough. McCoy put himself on the board first with an early takedown but then gave up two points in the second, but his third period effort helped him lock up the 7-6 decision.
165 pounds: Wentzel aims to repeat, Keating shoots for another upset win
- Wentzel wins close: Despite the low scoring match, Wentzel's win was enough to propel him into the finals with a 1-0 decision. His only point came by escape, and he'll likely need more than that to beat Keating, but he did major the Cavalier earlier this year.
- Keating wins by default: Former NCAA and ACC champion Mekhi Lewis medically defaults against Jake Keating of Virginia, giving Keating the bid to the conference finals. Lewis was injured in a dual against Wentzel earlier this year and will take this time to prep for NCAAs while Keating will battle for the conference crown.
174 pounds: Rematch set between Daniel Bullard and Clay Lautt for ACC title
- Bullard beats Howard: N.C. State's Daniel Bullard has lived up to his No. 1 seed so far by shutting out Virginia Tech's Dakota Bullard 6-0 for his second straight trip to the finals. Bullard lost in last year's final to North Carolina's Clay Lautt, but he'll have a chance to chase a title on his own now.
- Lautt also makes his return to the championship bout: Clay Lautt battled a tough Victor Marcelli in the semifinals, but his second-period takedown and third-period offense elevated him to an 8-3 decision over Marcelli and gave him the chance to defend his crown.
184 pounds: Bolen and Hidlay ready to rumble again
- Hunter Bolen also wins calmly: As dominant as Hunter Bolen has been this year, he kept things simple against Gregg Harvey, putting up a takedown and escape points and cruising to a 3-1 win against the Panther. His big test will come when he sees Hidlay again in the finals.
- Hidlay earns a decision to advance: The younger Hidlay brother jumped out to an early lead against Devin Kane of North Carolina and carried his momentum into a 5-4 win. He was controlled, not dominant, but a win is a win, and he'll need to be ready for Hunter Bolen later tonight.
- vs. No. 3 Devin Kane
197 pounds: Bonaccorsi and Aiello to battle for the title at 197 pounds
- Bonaccorsi dominates at 197 pounds: In one of the most lopsided semifinals of the afternoon, Nino Bonaccorsi topped N.C. State’s Nick Reenan with firepower from start to finish. He'll look for his first title this evening against Aiello.
- Aiello earns his shot at another title: Defending ACC champion Jay Aiello had to fight from behind against No. 3 Max Shaw for his chance at another title, but the Virginia wrestler did just that. After trailing 4-1 after the first period, Aiello put his points on the board to tie up the score before third and ended his match with a full two-minute ride-out. The win was hard-earned but an important one for Virginia's only ACC finalist so far this year.
285 pounds: A new era in ACC heavyweights takes center stage
- Wilson finishes strong for State: N.C. State's heavyweight has been Mr. Dependable over the last couple of seasons, and he continued to look like an All-American-caliber wrestler in this tournament. Wilson's 3-2 win gave N.C. State the team lead heading into the finals, and one more win from the heavyweight could seal the deal.
- Hunter Catka pulls off the upset win: In his first ACC tournament, Hunter Catka has wrestled like a veteran. The Hokie rookie took to the mat with energy and enthusiasm and wrestled hard from the opening whistle. He earned the first takedown and two escapes to propel him to a 4-3 decision over No. 2 Quinn Miller, and he'll have his chance for his first conference title tonight.
Live updates: First round results
Follow along for live updates from each round of the tournament:
125 pounds: Agin and McCormick advance
Logan Agin, a No. 6 seed, picks up the first win of the tournament with a 3-2 decision over Colton Camacho of Pittsburgh. Agin will see No. 2 Jakob Camacho of N.C. State next in the semifinals.
Patrick McCormick of Virginia also earns a semifinal spot after a tightly contested battle against Will Guida of North Carolina. McCormick will now wrestle No. 1 Sam Latona of Virginia Tech
133 pounds: Heilmann and Hayes move to the semis
Joe Heilmann moves on with BONUS. The Carolina No. 3 seed notches his first victory of the tournament in style, taking down Drake Doolittle of Duke with a technical fall. He'll have Korbin Myers of Virginia Tech next.
BIG win for Joe Heilmann.— UNC Wrestling (@UNCWrestling) February 28, 2021
He wins, a 20-5 technical fall!
Onto the semis. He'll face VT's Korbin Myers. pic.twitter.com/38nz6MhdBt
N.C. State's Jarrett Trombley wrestles tough, but Louie Hayes was just too much. The Virginia No. 4 seed advances to the semis with a 4-1 win.
133 | #10 Hayes gets a takedown in the final minute, and with the RT takes a 4-1 win over #11 Trombley.— NC State Wrestling 🤼♂️ (@PackWrestle) February 28, 2021
141 pounds: Courtney and Matthews wrestle to seed and stay alive
Brian Courtney of Virginia wrestles to seed and takes down Patrick Rowland of Duke by major. Courtney will see No. 2 Zach Sherman of North Carolina next in the semifinals.
FINAL | Rowland is defeated 13-3 by Courtney#GoDuke— Duke Wrestling (@DukeWRES) February 28, 2021
Cole Matthews prevails over Sam Hillegas of Virginia Tech in a close 3-2 tie-breaker win. Matthews will have Tariq Wilson of N.C. State next in the semifinals.
149 pounds: Scott and Finesilver punch their tickets to the next round
Ed Scott of N.C. State wins a tight one over Mick Burnett of Pitt 3-2 to stay alive in the championship bracket. Scott will have No. 2 Bryce Andonian next, but his win early helps N.C. State in what will likely be a tight team race between the Hokies and the Pack.
Josh Finesilver flexes his muscles against Denton Spencer of Virginia, dominating from start to finish and securing the 20-6 major. Finesilver will wrestle Austin O'Connor next. In 2019, O'Connor and Finesilver's brother, Mitch wrestled five times, with the older Finesilver brother having the 3-2 edge in the series but O'Connor winning the last match at NCAAs for third place.
157 pounds: Brady vs. McCoy & Hidlay vs. McClure set for semifinals
Connor Brady picked up a bye in the first round after an open spot at the No. 6 seed, and he'll take on No. 2 Justin McCoy in the 157-pound semifinals. McClure, on the other hand, battled his way to an 4-3 victory over Brandon LaRue of Duke for his chance to compete in the semifinals.
TICKET PUNCHED ❕— UNC Wrestling (@UNCWrestling) February 28, 2021
Josh McClure defeats Duke’s Brandon LaRue, 4-3.
That win secures an AQ at 157 pounds. McClure is headed to St. Louis! pic.twitter.com/sWS5rFe1Lz
165 pounds: Keating and Kennedy move on
A big win in a tough weight for North Carolina's Kennedy Monday as he tops N.C. State's Thomas Bullard 6-5 to move on the semifinals. He'll have Jake Wentzel of Pitt next.
KENNEDY MONDAY.— UNC Wrestling (@UNCWrestling) February 28, 2021
Monday scores again in the third period and picks up a 6-5 win over Thomas Bullard of NC State!
Onto the semis! pic.twitter.com/KCFjEfZRDc
Jake Keating took control early in his match against Eric Carter and wrestled hard for the technical fall. He'll advance to the semifinals where he'll challenge No. 2 Mekhi Lewis, the 2019 NCAA champion at the weight.
174 pounds: Howard and Marcelli stay tough and book a trip to the semis
Dakota Howard battled for his 8-6 win in sudden victory over Jared McGill, and he'll see Daniel Bullard in the semifinals soon.
JUNKYARD DOGGGGG!!! Can't teach heart! Grinds out a thrilling 8-6 victory! pic.twitter.com/P4V5jXVfAI— Virginia Tech Wrestling (@HokiesWrestling) February 28, 2021
Victor Marcelli advances to the semifinals after a 12-4 major decision against Duke's Conor Becker. Marcelli will wrestle defending ACC champion Clay Lautt in the semifinals next.
FINAL | Becker is defeated by Marcelli 12-4 by major decision#GoDuke— Duke Wrestling (@DukeWRES) February 28, 2021
184 pounds: Harvey and Kane secure wins to advance
Gregg Harvey takes the win over No. 4 Michael Battista! His 3-2 is enough, and he'll see No. 1 Hunter Bolen later today in the semifinals.
Carolina wants more! The Tar Heels send another wrestler into the semifinals as Devin Kane tops Duke's Vincent Baker by major! He'll have N.C. State's Trent Hidlay in the next round.
197 pounds: Reenan and Shaw advance and will have Bonaccorsi and Aiello ahead
N.C. State's Nick Reenan steps up and secures a win against Virginia Tech's Andy Smith to advance to the semis. Reenan was a surprise start for the Wolfpack after N.C. State wrestled freshman Isaac Trumble for the second half of the season, but the substitution was certainly smart. He'll have No. 1 Nino Bonaccorsi next.
Max Shaw comes through for North Carolina, securing a strong 12-5 decision win over Kaden Russell to book his ticket to the semifinals.
285 pounds: Gunning and Catka wrap up the first-round with wins
The first win at heavyweight belongs to North Carolina's Andrew Gunning who put up a 1-0 decision win against Austin Cooley. He'll see in-state rival Deonte Wilson of the Wolfpack next in the semifinals.
Hunter Catka ends the first round with a 17-0 tech fall over Jonah Neisenbaum to advance to the semifinals. Neisenbaum will drop down to the consolation bracket while Catka prepares to wrestle Quinn Miller of Virginia.
These are the returning ACC Champions in 2021
Former and defending ACC champions will wrestle in every weight, as the ACC only continues to add depth and talent to the conference. Here are the names of the guys who have ended up on the podium previously and will aim to do the same in 2021.
125 pounds: Jakob Camacho, N.C. State
N.C. State's Jakob Camacho enters the 2021 ACC tournament as a No. 2 seed behind Virginia Tech's Sam Latona, but the Wolfpack sophomore isn't expected to have any trouble working his way back to the conference finals. Camacho made a name for himself on the national scene when he beat 2019 NCAA finalist Jack Mueller in last year's ACC final, and he's been on a mission this year to work for a repeat title. With a 7-1 record on the year, Camacho has bonused every conference opponent except for Latona with his most recent win being a 14-5 major over Logan Agin, a wrestler he could see in the semifinals if Agin upsets Colton Camacho of Pitt. Camacho is a powerful wrestler who has a legitimate chance to defend his title and enter the NCAA tournament with a top-five seed.
133 pounds: Micky Phillippi, Pittsburgh
Micky Phillippi is a two-time ACC champion and one of the few college wrestlers in the country with a win over Oklahoma State NCAA finalist Daton Fix, yet he continues to be underrated nationally. This year, Phillippi will come into the conference tournament undefeated, having not lost a conference dual since January 2019. Korbin Myers, one of the few ACC competitors to ever beat Phillippi, will have the No. 2 seed, and these two could meet in the finals for an epic matchup. Neither wrestler took the mat for the Pitt vs. Virginia Tech dual, but they're on course to compete for the ACC title against one another.
141 pounds: Zach Sherman, North Carolina
Zach Sherman vs. Tariq Wilson. It's the rivalry that has everything: two veteran stars, two in-state opponents, and two guys battling for an ACC championship in a weight that runs deep at the national-level. Sherman took the ACC title last year after topping Wilson in a tight 5-4 decision, but Wilson took revenge at the N.C. State — North Carolina dual, beating Sherman 9-6 and delivering the Tar Heel his only loss of the season so far. This year, Wilson has the top seed while Sherman sits on the other side of the bracket at No. 2, hoping for a rematch with his N.C. State foe. To reach the finals though, Sherman will have to top either either Brian Courtney or Patrick Rowland in the semifinals, and one would be much preferable than the other. Sherman majored Rowland but only just snuck a 5-4 decision past Courtney. This weight is tough, and only one athlete in the bracket has ever one the conference before. The question is: can he do it again?
149 pounds: Austin O'Connor, North Carolina
Austin O'Connor has been a national leader at 149 pounds since his freshman year when he took third at the NCAAs and helped the Heels make noise in Pittsburgh. A 2019 ACC runner-up, O'Connor claimed his first conference title the following year and set himself up for another All-American performance at the national tournament before COVID-19 cancellations. O'Connor boasts an undefeated record this year with 83.3 percent bonus and looks to be on another level, with his closest bout being an 11-4 win over the No. 2 seed Bryce Andonian. He's clearly a title contender at the weight and will be looking to show Carolina fans what they would have likely seen at the national tournament last year. O'Connor hasn't lost a dual since a 8-4 decision against Pat Lugo at Midlands, and he's on a mission not to lose again.
157 pounds: Hayden Hidlay, N.C. State
A three-time ACC champion, Hayden Hidlay is the most decorated athlete in the conference this year and is wrestling for his chance at a national title this year after finishing 2nd and 4th in his first two NCAA tournament appearances. The Wolfpack senior is undefeated against conference opponents in his career and has a 71 percent bonus rate this year to accompany his 7-0 record. Hidlay has been a leader for N.C. State during his entire tenure with the Pack, and he'll be looking to finish this year with the same level of dominance and success he's shown in the past. With his brother Trent in the starting lineup and in the national title conversation as well, it's Hidlay mania for the Wolfpack and the ACC, so look for these guys to raise the roof.
165 pounds: Jake Wentzel, Pittsburgh
The 165-pound bracket in the ACC tournament might be the deepest bracket of them all with Pitt's Jake Wentzel holding the top seed after his injury default win against 2019 NCAA champion Mekhi Lewis. Wentzel is 7-1 on the season with his only loss coming against Thomas Bullard of N.C. State, but his wins against Lewis, UNC's Kennedy Monday and Virginia's Jake Keating give him the strongest resume of the group. Last year, Wentzel put up three solid performances in the 2020 ACC's championship with a 3-1 win against McFadden, a 3-2 win against Kennedy and an 8-1 against Ben Anderson to take the title in a year when Lewis was taking an Olympic redshirt. Now Lewis is back and looking to defend his 2019 NCAA and ACC titles, but Wentzel is waiting.
165 pounds: Mekhi Lewis, Virginia Tech
Mekhi Lewis shocked the world when he ran through the 2019 NCAA wrestling bracket at 165 pounds, beating No. 1-seed Alex Marinelli, No. 4-seed Evan Wick and No. 2- seed defending NCAA champion Vincenzo Joseph for the title. After taking an Olympic redshirt in 2020, Lewis has returned as a staple for the Hokies and will be a key player in Tech's efforts to take home the conference championship. He won his weight class at the conference level in 2019, and he'll look to do the same from the No. 2 seed spot this year. Lewis has just three losses on his career, the injury default win over Wentzel and two losses to Isaiah White and Connor Flynn in the 2019 season. A win at the ACC tournament this year would improve his seed dramatically for the national tournament, and if he can stay healthy through the postseason, he's absolutely a threat for a conference and national title this year.
174 pounds: Clay Lautt, North Carolina
After winning the 2020 ACC championship at 174 pounds, North Carolina's Clay Lautt bumped up to start the season at 184 pounds and took on two tough opponents in Trent Hilday and Hunter Bolen. Since dropping back down to 174 pounds, Lautt has been undefeated and has posted a 4-0 record to secure the No. 2 seed in the tournament behind Daniel Bullard of N.C. State. Lautt beat Bullard 4-3 in last year's tournament, but lost 6-4 to the Wolfpack wrester in the dual last season. This year, if Lautt and Bullard wrestle to seed, they'll meet again in the finals for what could be another fun in-state battle for the title. Bullard’s only loss this year is a 6-4 loss to Thomas Fitz in the App State dual, but Lautt will look to change that on his quest for a repeat conference crown.
184 pounds: Hunter Bolen, N.C. State
Virginia Tech's Hunter Bolen earned the No. 2 seed in last year's NCAA tournament after topping the podium at the ACC tournament in 2020 with impressive wins over Michael Battista by tech and Trent Hidlay 2-1. This year, he's been equally successfully, scoring a 10-4 win over Battista in the dual season and notching another close victory over Hidlay. Bolen will see either Battista or Gregg Harvey, a wrestler he majored, in the semifinals, but if the bracket goes chalk, he'll see Hidlay again in the championship match. Bolen is 2-0 against the Wolfpack star, but all his matches are close, and if there's one person who can challenge Bolen for the conference title this year, it's Hidlay. Bolen has proven himself to be a calm, consistent champion, and if he wrestles like he did last year, he'll hold on to his title for another season.
197 pounds: Jay Aiello, Virginia
Last season, Virginia's Jay Aiello ran the ACC at 197 pounds. He won the conference handily and took the only automatic NCAA qualifying spot at the weight. Aiello, however, has a little more competition this year, as 184-pounder Nino Bonaccorsi has bumped up, taken the No. 1 seed and is looking to challenge Jay Aiello's plans for a repeat title. Bonaccorsi is 7-1 on the year with a loss to Isaac Trumble but a win over Aiello while Aiello is 8-1 on the year with a loss to Nino Bonaccorsi and a win over N.C. State's other 197-pounder Nick Reenan. N.C. State put Reenan in the lineup for the postseason, and if the Wolfpack senior wins his first-round matchup against Stan Smeltzer, he'll see Bonaccorsi in the semifinals.
ACC team wrestling records
Most Consecutive Titles: 20 - Maryland, 1954-1973
Widest Margin of Victory: 62 - Maryland (124) over Virginia (62), 1967
Smallest Margin of Victory: 1
- North Carolina (80.25) over NC State (79.25), 1980
- North Carolina (78.5) over NC State (77.5), 1993
Largest Point Total by Champion: 126 - Maryland, 1969
Smallest Point Total by Champion: 70 - Maryland, 2009
A complete list of ACC championship records can be found in a .PDF here.