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10th-Ranked Wrestlers Head to Virginia
January 06, 2010

Jan. 6, 2010

 No. 10 Oklahoma at the Virginia Duals  
 Date  Friday and Saturday, Jan. 8-9 
 Location  Hampton, Va. | Hampton Coliseum 
 Tickets  Order Online
 Bracket  National College Bracket
 Online  Virginia Duals Official Web site | OU Media Guide
 Team Info  RosterCoaching Staff | 2009-10 Schedule and Results 

NORMAN, Okla. – The 10th-ranked University of Oklahoma wrestling team (5-0-1) hits the road this weekend, Jan. 8-9, to compete in the 30th Annual Virginia Duals in Hampton, Va.

Oklahoma, the No. 2 seed for the tournament, is one of 16 teams in the National Bracket, including eight ranked in InterMat’s Top 25. Oklahoma State, ranked No. 4 nationally, is the top seed.

Also ranked are No. 11 Lehigh, No. 14 Penn State, No. 18 Virginia, No. 19 Kent State, No. 20 Edinboro and No. 24 Virginia Tech.

“This is a great venue, a great event with outstanding competition,” OU head coach Jack Spates said. “We will have to be ready, prepared and be tough in order to be successful.”

Virginia Duals Bracket | Oklahoma Roster | 2009-10 Schedule and Results

The Sooners are scheduled to kick off the tournament against Bucknell (4-3) on Friday at 10 a.m. CT. It will mark the first ever matchup between the programs.

With a win over Bucknell, Oklahoma would face the winner the Virginia/Michigan matchup Friday at 2 p.m. CT. Lose, and the Sooners would face the loser of the Virginia/Michigan battle Friday at 2 p.m.

In-state rivals Oklahoma and Oklahoma State would each need to win three matches in order to face off in the finals, held Saturday at 7:30 p.m. CT. The two Oklahoma schools battled to a 16-16 tie this season on Dec. 1 in their first matchup.

 Probable Sooner Starters (Weight)  Hometown (Year)  Record
 No. 13 Jarrod Patterson (125)  Cushing, Okla. (Fr.)  16-3
 Kendric Maple (133)  Wichita, Kan. (Fr.)  14-4
 No. 5 Zack Bailey (141)  Kansas City, Mo. (Jr.)  10-5
 No. 4 Kyle Terry (149)  Midwest City, Okla. (Sr.)  12-2
 No. 11 Shane Vernon (157)  Broken Arrow, Okla. (Sr.)  11-3
 No. 16 Tyler Caldwell (165)  Santa Fe, N.M. (RSo.)  13-5
 No. 8 Jeff James (174)  El Reno, Okla. (Jr.)  14-2
 Erich Schmidtke (184)  Aberdeen, Wash. (RFr.)  12-6
 No. 3 Eric Lapotsky (197)  Mt. Carmel, Pa. (Sr.)  14-1
 No. 12 Nathan Fernandez (HWT)  Lawton, Okla. (Jr.)  17-4

Oklahoma will run eight nationally ranked wrestlers onto the mat this weekend, including three in the top five. Senior Eric Lapotsky leads all Sooners ranked No. 3 at 197 pounds, followed by No. 4 Kyle Terry at 149 pounds and No. 5 Zack Bailey at 141 pounds.

Additionally, junior Jeff James is eighth at 174 pounds, 157-pound Shane Vernon is No. 11 and heavyweight Nathan Fernandez is slotted No. 12. Rounding out ranked Sooners are true freshmen Jarrod Patterson (No. 13 at 125 pounds) and Tyler Caldwell (No. 16 at 165 pounds).

Making his first appearance in the Oklahoma starting lineup at 133 pounds this weekend will be freshman Kendric Maple. The Wichita, Kan., native has competed this year at 141 pounds and owns a 14-4 record this season with second place finishes at the Lindenwood, Oklahoma City and Missouri Opens. Maple also earned third place last weekend at the Ron Beaman Open.

“We think Kendric will surprise a lot of people,” Spates said. “He has made the weight change very comfortably and we are excited to see him on the mat.” 

Bucknell counters with four ranked, led by No. 7 Kevin LeValley at 149 pounds. Andy Rendos is No. 10 at 165 pounds, Shane Riccio is No. 17 at 174 pounds and Dave Marble is No. 18 competing at 133 pounds.

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