Uploaded Ad
Bencomo Advances to NCAA Tournament
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 03/05/2011
article image
Photo Courtesy: Maddie Burke
BDN+ Premium Content
Related Links
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.-Duke University redshirt sophomore Diego Bencomo became the 32nd Blue Devil to earn a spot in the NCAA Wrestling Championships today when he garnered ACC runner-up honors at 184 pounds. Bencomo advanced to the title bout and earned one of the three automatic berths in the NCAA Tournament. He fell to Corey Peltier in a narrow 3-1 decision in the finals.

The Blue Devils finished in sixth overall. Maryland took home the title with 94.5 points and Virginia Tech took second with 82.5 points.

Bencomo upset top-seeded and No. 19 Jon Fausey of the University of Virginia in the semifinal route to earn a spot in the championship bout against Peltier. The win ensures Bencomo a berth in the NCAA Tournament as the ACC was awarded three spots in the 184-pound division.

In the finals, Bencomo and Peltier dueled evenly throughout the entire match. Duke garnered the first lead at 1-0 with an escape in the first period. Peltier was able to control the second quarter and built up his riding time for what would be an extra point. Sporting a 1-0 lead heading into the final session, Bencomo was able to erase the riding time advantage to start the third stanza. Peltier evened the score with an escape and the two continued to trade shots in search of the winning points. In the waning seconds, Bencomo took a shot but it was Peltier who came back and earned the takedown for a 3-1 victory and the ACC title.  

Seeded fourth overall at 184 pounds, Bencomo received a bye in the first round. Against Fausey in the semifinals, the Phoenix native fell behind 2-1 in the first period. He registered an escape to start the second session and make it a 2-2 match. The contest remained tied after five minutes and Fausey picked down to start the final stanza. The Cavalier redshirt freshman jumped ahead 3-2 with the escape. The score remained in Fausey's favor until the final seconds when he shot in on Bencomo and the Blue Devil was able to scramble for a takedown and 4-3 decision. Bencomo will take on Corey Peltier of Maryland in the championship bout. Peltier narrowly won the regular season contest 8-6.

At 174 pounds, redshirt freshman Bret Klopp registered two close losses to finish the season. He fell to the No. 3 seed Thomas Ferguson of North Carolina in the opening bout 8-4. In the consolation bracket it was No. 4 seed Matt Epperly from Virginia Tech edging Klopp by a 5-3 decision. Klopp finishes the year with a 27-12 overall record.

Senior Mike Bell lined up at 141 pounds and dropped the first two matches of the day to finish his season with a 17-18 overall record, while A.J. Guardado did the same at 149 pounds. Rookie Ryan Harding made his debut at the ACC Championships at 157 pounds, falling to the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds overall.

Senior Willy Mello completes his season at 165 pounds with an 8-17 mark after dropping a pair of matches to the No. 2 and No. 4 seeds overall in the tournament. Redshirt sophomore Andrew Fulk competed at heavyweight. He nearly defeated Eloheim Palma of NC State, losing a tough 6-5 decision. Jack Danilkowicz ended Fulk's day in the consolation bracket, edging him in a 5-3 decision.

Bencomo will compete in the NCAA Tournament in Philadelphia on March 17-19. The final selections to the field will be announced on March 9.