Blacksburg, Va. – The Virginia Tech Hokies wrestling team sent eight grapplers to the 2022 Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn. Tech’s athletes were competing both attached and unattached at the prestigious two-day event on Jan. 1 and 2, 2022.
Redshirt senior No. 14 Hunter Bolen (Floyd, Va.) was the No. 2 seed at 184 and finished third at the two-day event. Bolen picked up three wins on Saturday to push himself into the semifinal match on Sunday. He posted a fall over Cornell’s Nathan Thacker (3:26) and secured two decision wins over West Virginia’s Anthony Carman (5-1) and DJ Parker, Jr. of North Dakota State (9-2) on day one of competition. Bolen lost a 6-3 decision to Kyle Cochran of Maryland in the semifinals, thus putting him into the consolation bracket where he advanced with an injury default over Michigan State’s Layne Malczewski and a gritty sudden victory win over Missouri’s No. 15 Jeremiah Kent to secure a third-place finish.
Freshman Andy Smith (Christiansburg, Va.) competed at 197 and went 5-2, en route to a fifth-place finish in his Southern Scuffle debut. Wrestling at 165, freshman Clayton Ulrey (Grantville, Pa.) finished with a 2-2 record, recording a fall in 2:05. Redshirt sophomore Brandon Wittenberg (Haymarket, Va.) ended his weekend going 3-2, locking up a shutout tech fall (15-0, 4:07) over the course of his weekend.
Competing unattached, freshman Eddie Ventresca (Moxbury, N.J.) finished eighth at 125, going 3-3 in his Scuffle debut. Freshman Cooper Flynn (Seymour, Tenn.) also competed at 125 and went 3-2, picking up a fall in his first Southern Scuffle.
At 285, freshman Hunter Catka (Brookhaven, Pa.) opened his tournament with a 17-1 tech fall in 4:20. He would finish his Scuffle run with a 2-2 record. Freshman Sam Fisher (Warrenton, Va.) competed at 184 and posted a 1-2 mark.
Full results and brackets can be found at top left of story page.