BUENA VISTA, VA. -- The Apprentice School wrestling team made it 10-for-10 in conference championships winning the 2011 National Collegiate Wrestling Association Mid-Atlantic Conference title at Southern Virginia University on Saturday.
Four wrestlers won their individual weight classes to raise the all-time total of conference champions to 56 for the wrestling team. They scored 170 points to outdistance University of Maryland Baltimore County (159.5) and VMI (106) in the 13-team event.
Junior Marcus Chevres won the 133-pound weight class to become a three-time conference champion. The Norfolk native opened with a 10-0 major decision over Nicholas Johnson of Tennessee before winning by fall in 2:05 over fourth-seeded Kris Dutt of UMBC. In the final he earned a 13-7 decision over second-seeded Kekura Musa also of UMBC. The top-seeded Chevres is now 40-9 on the season.
Fellow junior Anthony Damico won the 165-pound class for his first conference crown. The Sterling, Va. native, who was the third-seed in his bracket, opened winning his first two matches by fall. He pinned James Hagan of East Tennessee in 3:25 then second-seeded Adam Broda of Virginia Tech in 1:41. In the final he earned a 7-5 decision over Bryce Garrison of VMI to win the bracket. Damico finished the regular season 32-18.
Sophomore Steven Ours went 3-0 at 174-pounds to win that bracket for his first conference crown. He opened winning over Johnny Do of UMBC in 48 seconds before knocking off Joel Hutchins of VMI 13-6 to advance to the final. In the final he won by fall in 1:59 over Mike Munno of UMBC to raise his record to 33-12 with 18 of those wins by fall. The Alexandria, Va. native was the top-seed in the bracket.
Freshman Willie Crawford won the 184 pound bracket going 3-0 to win his first title. The Fluvanna, Va. native started with a fall in 56 seconds over Justin Addis of Middle Tennessee State and then earned a 16-8 major decision over Eldar Muradov of UMBC. In the final he faced the 2010 NCWA runner-up at 184 pounds Ben Brummel of South Carolina and pinned him in 2:54 to win the bracket. Crawford is now 33-6 on the year with 12 wins by fall and won the Outstanding Wrestler award for the heavier weight (165 and up).
Four Builders took second at their weight classes - Ty Ford (2-1 at 125 pounds), Ricky Anderson (3-1 at 157), Kevin Gray (2-1 at 235) and Jeremy Diley (1-1 at heavyweight). With his three wins Anderson tied the single-season victories record of 46 by Cecil Lee in 2008-09. He also moved to within two wins of joining the Centurion Club with 100 career wins. Chevres with his wins also is nearing the Centurion Club as he now has 99 wins on his career.
Apprentice School Head Coach Bruce Shumaker was named the Mid-Atlantic Conference Coach of the Year. The Builders will now participate in the 2011 NCWA Nationals to be held March 10-12 in Macon, Ga.