Levi Ventura

Hokies receive seeds for 2023 NCAA Championships

NCAA Championship Central Full Brackets

BLACKSBURG, VA – The Virginia Tech wrestling team made program history at the 2023 ACC Championships by automatically qualifying all ten weight classes for the first time in Hokies wrestling history. Tech is one of three schools – Missouri and Iowa – to auto qualify all ten weight classes and one of four programs – Missouri, Iowa, and Oklahoma State (via wildcard selection) – to send all ten starters to Tulsa for the season finale. The 2023 NCAA Wrestling Championships seeds and brackets were announced on Wednesday night with Virginia Tech garnering a program record five top-7 seeds in their respective weight classes.
Hokies Nab Five Top-7 Seeds
The most accomplished wrestler in program history, redshirt senior Mekhi Lewis claimed the highest seed among the Hokies with a No. 3 seed at 174-pounds. Lewis enters with a 18-1 season record and his third ACC title just this past weekend. The returning finalist and 2019 national champion will look to make history yet again and return atop of the podium in what could be his final season.

A budding star in his first season of collegiate competition, freshman phenom Caleb Henson will enter the 2023 NCAA Championships as the No. 4 seed at 149-pounds. The first true freshman ACC champion for the Hokies since Devin Carter in 2011, Henson stands at 22-3 with impressive victories over four All-Americans – No. 2 Sammy Sasso (Ohio State), No. 9 Jonathan Millner (App State), No. 12 Jaden Abas (Stanford), and Zach Sherman (North Carolina).

Redshirt junior Sam Latona enters his third NCAA Championship – his first two seasons at 125-pounds – as the No. 6 seed in his first year at 133-pounds. Latona posts a 24-6 season record and a third-place finish at the ACC Championships. Latona owns seven ranked victories on the season including a decision over No. 3 seed Vito Arujau as the Hokie looks to return to the podium after an All-American finish in 2021.

Another Hokie claiming a top-ten seed is Bryce Andonian at 157-pounds with an 8-2 record on the season and an ACC runner-up finish. The Tech senior is up a weight from 149-pounds where he claimed third at the 2022 NCAA Championships. Despite battling injuries early in the year, the NCAA's most exciting wrestler is poised to make another deep championship run as the No. 7 seed.

Rounding out top-10 seeds for the Hokies is graduate Hunter Bolen at No. 7. Bolen made history by becoming the first five-time national qualifier for the Hokies at the 2023 ACC Championships. The two-time All-American will look to improve upon his performances in his last national championship for the Hokies after an illustrious career in Blacksburg.

Where the Other Hokies Stand
Another freshman joining the party is Tampa, Florida native Tom Crook entering his first national championship as the No. 15 seed. Crook posts a 16-9 record and secured his trip to Tulsa with a fourth-place finish at the 2023 ACC Championships. With Crook qualifying, the Hokies are the only team to boast two true freshmen with automatic qualification to this year's national championship.

Andy Smith qualifies for the first time after two years being the starter for the Hokies at 197-pounds. Entering with a third-place finish at the ACC Championships, Smith will take the mat as the No. 21 seed.

Redshirt sophomore Hunter Catka snags the No. 22 seed holding a season record of 19-6 and a third-place conference championship finish at 285-pounds to qualify for his second NCAA Championship in as many attempts.

Making his third trip to the national tournament is Connor Brady. After a convincing second-place outing at the ACC Championships, Brady qualified for his third season finale in as many years as a starter and will take the mat in Tulsa as the No. 23 seed in a loaded 165-pound weight class.

Entering his first championships is redshirt freshman Eddie Ventresca. Ventresca is an automatic qualifier after a runner-up finish at the ACC Championships and holds a 16-7 record in his first year as a starter for the Hokies. The first-time qualifier will take to the mat in his first post-season appearance as the No. 27 seed to round out the Hokies' qualifiers.

The 2023 NCAA Championships will take place March 16-18, 2023 at the Bank of Oklahoma Center in Tulsa Oklahoma. Follow Virginia Tech Wrestling on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for all information and updates.
2023 NCAA Wrestling Championships
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Virginia Tech Seeds
125 – No. 27 Eddie Ventresca, r-Fr

  • Roxbury, New Jersey
  • 1x NCAA Qualifier
  • 16-7; 7 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 6 Stevo Poulin (University of Northern Colorado), 28-5

133 – No. 7 Sam Latona, r-Jr

  • Alabaster, Alabama
  • 3x NCAA Qualifier
  • 23-6; 9 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: Connor Brown (Mizzou), 11-9

141 – No. 15 Tom Crook, Fr

  • Tampa, Florida
  • 1x NCAA Qualifier
  • 16-9; 5 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 18 Frankie Tal-Shahar (Northwestern), 12-7

149 – No. 4 Caleb Henson, Fr

  • Cartersville, Georgia
  • 1x NCAA Qualifier
  • 21-3; 10 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 29 Alec Hagan (Ohio), 20-14

157 – No. 7 Bryce Andonian, Sr

  • Kirtland, Ohio
  • 4x NCAA Qualifier
  • 8-2; 6 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 26 Peyten Kellar (Ohio), 23-7

165 – No. 23 Connor Brady, r-So

  • Powell, Ohio
  • 3x NCAA Qualifier
  • 14-9; 3 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 10 Carson Kharchla (Ohio St), 13-4

174 – No. 3 Mekhi Lewis, r-Sr

  • Somerset, New Jersey
  • 4x NCAA Qualifier
  • 18-1; 8 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 30 Jackson Turley (Rutgers), 10-12

184 – No. 7 Hunter Bolen, Gr

  • Floyd, Virginia
  • 5x NCAA Qualifier
  • 19-5; 10 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 26 David Key (Navy), 21-9

197 – No. 21 Andy Smith, r-Jr

  • Christiansburg, Virginia
  • 1x NCAA Qualifier
  • 15-7; 8 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 12 Zac Braunagel (Illinois), 21-7

285 – No. 22 Hunter Catka, r-So

  • Brookhaven, Pennsylvania
  • 2x NCAA Qualifier
  • 19-6; 12 bonus point victories
  • First Round Opponent: No. 11 Trent Hillger (Wisconsin), 16-8