DURHAM, N.C.-The Duke University wrestling squad will be taking a much needed break over the next couple of weeks after a strong start to the 2012-13 campaign. The Blue Devils, under the direction of first-year head coach Glen Lanham, have experienced successes in the early months of the season and are excited for the future leading up to ACC Championships.
Duke Shows Well at 2012-13 Season at Hokie Open Redshirt freshman Conner Hartmann shined in his opening weekend in a Duke singlet. Hartmann led the Blue Devils at the Hokie Open, winning the 197-pound division. Redshirt senior Diego Bencomo finished in the runner-up spot as Duke placed three guys in the top six and had eight wrestlers with winning records. Immanuel Kerr-Brown, wrestling unattached, took sixth at 157 pounds.
Hartmann Collects ACC Honors after Opening Weekend Conner Hartmann collected ACC Co-Wrestler of the Week recognition following his win at the Hokie Open. The Port Orchard, Wash., native captured the honor for the first time in his career after going 4-0 at the season-opening tournament. Two of his wins at the Hokie Open came against ACC opponents, including the 6-3 title win over Antonio Girogio of North Carolina.
Blue Devils in Tournament Action Six different wrestlers have placed at five different tournaments so far this season. Conner Hartmann leads the way with three top-three placings, including one win, while Immanuel Kerr-Brown has three top-seven finishes for the year. Junior Brian Self garnered his first tournament placing when he took fifth at the Keystone Classic at 197 pounds. Redshirt freshman Marcus Cain also captured his first top-four placing at the Keystone Classic.
Duke Represented in the Rankings Diego Bencomo, Conner Hartmann and Brandon Gambucci have been peppered throughout the various polls this season. Bencomo debuted at No. 19 at 184 pounds on the InterMat and NWCA/AWN rankings Nov. 6, while Hartmann was 20th. Hartmann climbed to as high as 18th in the polls, while Gambucci has been a mainstay among the top 25 in the WrestlingReport rankings.
Gambucci Leads Team in Pins In eight wins this season, redshirt sophomore Brandon Gambucci has recorded five pins. All five falls have come in the first period this season, including one in just 54 seconds at the Keystone Classic. His five falls are the most by a Blue Devil this season.
Immanuel Kerr-Brown with Strong Showings Redshirt junior Immanuel Kerr-Brown had a strong start to the 2012-13 season. Wrestling unattached at 157 pounds for the first half of the season, the Rome, Ga., native owns a team-high 15 wins and has placed in three tournaments, including winning the Ashland Open. Kerr-Brown is 9-1 in his previous 10 matches heading into the second part of the campaign.
Double Digit Victories Four Blue Devils have amassed at least 10 victories on the year. Immanuel Kerr-Brown, Brandon Gambucci, Brian Dorsey and Conner Hartmann all have surpassed the 10-win mark so far this season. Kerr-Brown and Dorsey both wrestled unattached during the fall portion of the schedule, while Hartmann is tops among attached wrestlers with 14 wins.
Up After the New Year Duke resumes its schedule with the prestigious Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Blue Devils open their ACC schedule Jan. 6 at Virginia Tech and make their debut at home Jan. 23 against Appalachian State.
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