BOONE, N.C. — Appalachian State wrestling coach JohnMark Bentley on Thursday announced his team’s schedule for the 2018-19 season.
With two of its five Power Five conference opponents visiting Varsity Gym and the 2019 Southern Conference Championships coming to the Holmes Center on March 10, App State will attempt to win a fourth straight league title.
The dual-meet schedule includes home matches against North Carolina (Nov. 25) and Oklahoma (Dec. 16) as well as visits to Boone from SoCon rivals Campbell (Jan. 20) and Chattanooga (Feb. 3). Those two programs have placed in the top three behind the title-winning Mountaineers in the conference standings each of the last two seasons.
NC State, Duke and Rutgers are also on the 2018-19 schedule, meaning the Mountaineers will face three teams that were in the top 20 in the final NWCA/USA Today rankings from 2017-18.
“I am excited for the challenge ahead with this group,” said Bentley, who in the last three seasons has led App State to a 20-1 conference record that ranks fifth nationally. “Expectations are high, and we have put together a schedule that will challenge our team and help prepare them for the NCAA tournament. I am looking forward to the number of exciting home contests we will have in Varsity Gym this season, as well as the SoCon tournament in March!”
Season tickets for App State Wrestling are available for $35 (adults) and $15 (youth) by clicking HERE for an online purchase, contacting the ticket office at 828-262-2079 or going to the App State athletics ticket office located at the Holmes Center. It is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays.
Single-match tickets are $7 (adult) and $3 (youth), with the visits from UNC, Oklahoma and Chattanooga set as premium matches with a price of $10 for adults and $5 for youth.
App State will open the 2018-19 season with its Black & Gold exhibition in Varsity Gym on Oct. 30 before traveling to out-of-state tournaments in Virginia (Southeast Open), New York (Northeast Duals) and Pennsylvania (Keystone Classic) on consecutive weekends. The Northeast Duals will include head-to-head matchups with Sacred Heart and Rutgers.
After Thanksgiving, the Mountaineers will have back-to-back home matches against UNC (at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 25) and Ohio (at 7 p.m. on Nov. 30). The Mountaineers beat the Tar Heels in Boone two seasons ago, and Appalachian rallied to claim a dramatic 18-14 victory at Ohio last season.
App State will travel to Raleigh on Dec. 4 for a 7 p.m. road match against national power NC State, which tied for fourth place in the team standings at the 2018 NCAA Championships, and return to action 12 days later with a Sunday home match against Oklahoma at 3 p.m. in Boone. Last season, the Mountaineers turned a 9-0 deficit into a 13-9 lead before falling 19-13 against the 20th-ranked Sooners.
After beginning 2019 with the Southern Scuffle from Jan. 1-2 in Chattanooga, App State will open its SoCon schedule with a home match against Gardner-Webb on Jan. 8 at 7 p.m. The Mountaineers will compete at VMI on Jan. 13 and host Campbell for a Sunday showdown in Varsity Gym at 3 p.m. on Jan. 20.
The Appalachian Open in Boone will be held the following Saturday, and Chattanooga visits Varsity Gym for another big Sunday matchup at 3 p.m. on Feb. 3.
The Mountaineers step away from their league schedule to face Duke in Durham on Feb. 7, and will they travel to Davidson on Feb. 13 for the fifth of their six SoCon matches. Senior night at Varsity Gym will coincide with the regular-season home finale against The Citadel on Feb. 17 at 3 p.m.
Appalachian concludes the regular season with a Pennsylvania-based doubleheader on Feb. 23, as the Mountaineers will take on Bloomsburg at 1 p.m. and then travel 70 miles west to Lock Haven for a 7:30 p.m. nightcap.
On March 10, App State will be hosting the SoCon Wrestling Championships for the eighth time overall and the first time since 2011. The Holmes Center will also be home to the 2020 Championships.
The season-ending NCAA Championships will be held in Pittsburgh from March 21-23.
App State’s home matches against Ohio on Nov. 30 and Gardner-Webb on Jan. 8 will be doubleheaders that begin with high school duals at 5:30 p.m. Science Hill (Tenn.) will face Clover (S.C.) before the Ohio match, and Avery County will face Cave Spring (Va.) before the Gardner-Webb match.