The National Collegiate Open is the final opportunity for wrestlers redshirting to compete during the NCAA regular season and often features competitors from some top teams. Wrestling for Duke were freshmen Marcus Cain (149), Andrew DeHart (157), Trey Adamson (174), Dylan Ryan (184) and Conner Hartmann (197).
DeHart and Hartmann took second overall at 157 and 197 pounds, respectively, while Cain was fifth overall at 149 pounds. Adamson battled well with losses to the eventual runner-up and third place finisher.
At 157 pounds, DeHart started the day with a major decision over Purdue's Dustin Schultz. He registered a first-period pin in his second match of the day to advance to the semifinals. Up against Pat Robinson of Purdue, DeHart edged Robinson in a 4-1 decision. In the championship bout, Virginia Tech's Chadd Strube edged the Duke rookie 2-1 as DeHart earned his second tournament runner-up finish of the year. DeHart completes the 2011-12 season with a 21-5 record.
Cain used a pair of close decisions over Roger Wildmo of Michigan state and Christian Barber of North Carolina to earn a spot in the semifinals. Up against Minnesota's Matt Mincey, the Winston-Salem, N.C., native lost a heartbreaking 5-4 decision to the eventual champion.
Moving into the wrestleback bracket, Cain lost a rematch to Wildmo before bouncing back to take fifth with a 7-2 decision against Pete Baldwin of Old Dominion. Cain finishes his rookie season with a 25-7 overall record and placed among the top five in three tournament.
Hartmann opened the day with a pin in 3:42 over Branch Walker of UNC Pembroke. He picked up two more decisions over foes from Indiana and Ohio to earn a spot in the title bout. In the final, Hartmann went against Scott Schiller of Minnesota in a 17-9 loss for second-place overall. For the year, Hartmann posted a 19-3 record and placed in three tournaments.
Adamson and Ryan both went 1-2 for the day. Adamson posted a major decision to start the day before falling in consecutive matches to the eventual runner-up and third-place finisher, respectively. Ryan started the competition with a narrow 2-1 decision. His next two matches were hard-fought one-point decisions.
The Duke wrestling team opens postseason action Saturday, March 3 at the ACC Championships in Chapel Hill, N.C. The entire competition will be broadcast live on ESPN3. Opening matches begin at 11 a.m.