Three American University wrestlers will head to the 2016 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, being held in New York this week, March 17-19. Senior John Boyle earned an automatic bid to the championships by placing second in at 157 pounds at the 2016 Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association Championships, while seniors David Terao (125) and Mitchell Wightman (165) each earned at-large bids at their respective weight classes.
ABOUT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS...
This year, the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships will be held at Madison Square Garden in New York. The event, in its 86th year, is being hosted by Hofstra University.
The action begins Thursday, with the first session slated to start at noon, followed by Session II at 7 p.m. On Friday, the third session, which features the quarterfinals, begins at 11 a.m., with the fourth session, including semifinals, starting at 8 p.m.
Saturday's action begins at 11 a.m. with the wrestle-back semifinals and third-, fifth- and seventh-place matches. Meanwhile, the finals are slated to begin at 8 p.m.
WATCH THE ACTION...
For fans that are unable to make it to New York for this year's championships, ESPN will provide comprehensive coverage of the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships from Madison Square Garden. For the third straight year, all six sessions will be televised and every match carried on ESPN3 throughout the entire three-day competition.
ESPN will televise the semifinals and finals in prime time and ESPNU will televise the first and second sessions, quarterfinals and the medal round. ESPN3 will carry individual mat feeds throughout the entire tournament including the return of "Off the Mat"during the Championships finals. Additionally, for computer users, ESPN3 will once again offer multi-mat, simultaneous viewing which allows fans to watch up to four different mats at one time.
Both the television and ESPN3 content will be available on WatchESPN.
LAST YEAR AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS...
American sent a pair of competitors to the 2015 NCAA Championships, led by David Terao. For the second straight year, Terao finished just one win shy of All-America status, advancing to the round of 12 at 125 pounds. He opened with a pair of wins on the first day of action, defeating ninth-seeded Dylan Peters of Northern Iowa in a 12-10 decision before knocking off reigning national champion Jesse Delgado of Illinois in a 4-2 decision. However, Terao dropped a pair of bouts on day two of action, falling to top-seeded Alan Waters of Missouri in a 4-1 decision before losing an 8-5 decision to 11th-seeded Jordan Conaway of Penn State.
Meanwhile, John Boyle, making his first NCAA appearance, posted a 1-2 record in the tournament as the eighth seed. After defeating Boise State's Steven Hernandez, 6-2, Boyle dropped decisions to Virginia Tech's Nick Brascetta (3-2) and Duke's Immanuel Kerr-Brown (5-3, SV).
LAST TIME OUT...
American finished seventh in the team standings at the 2016 EIWA Championships, scoring 63 points. Six different Eagles reached the podium, led by senior John Boyle who finished as the runner-up at 157 pounds for the second straight season. Senior David Terao (125) and sophomore Jeric Kasunic (197) each placed fifth in their respective weight classes, junior Tom Page (149) and senior Mitchell Wightman (165) placed sixth and senior Tyler Scotton (141) placed seventh.
Senior David Terao, a four-time NCAA qualifier, is seeded 15th at 125 pounds with a 25-5 overall record and will face Virginia's Nick Hermann in the opening round. Hermann, who holds a 25-7 mark on the season, earned an automatic bid to the tournament with a third-place finish at the ACC Championships.
Senior John Boyle, making his second straight NCAA appearance, enters the weekend as the 10th seed at 157 pounds with a 29-7 overall record. Boyle's first-round match-up is against West Virginia's Dylan Cottrell, who owns a 30-9 record on the season. Cottrell earned an automatic NCAA berth after placing third at the Big 12 Championships.
Senior Mitchell Wightman, making his second NCAA appearance and first as an Eagle, owns a 22-15 overall record on the season. He will face Northern Iowa's Cooper Moore in the pigtails at 165 pounds. Moore owns a 15-6 record on the season and earned an automatic NCAA berth with a third-place finish at the MAC Championships.