This past Tuesday, the fifth and final member of the InterMat Top-100 recruits list from New York, Angelo Malvestuto officially came off of the market when he announced that he would be continuing his academic and athletic career in Blacksburg, VA for Head Coach Kevin Dresser and the Virginia Tech Hokies…The news broke exactly one week after fellow Empire State top-100 recruit, Nick Wilcox (#70) revealed that he had decided to do his collegiate wrestling at Bloomsburg University….LHW wishes to extend its sincerest congratulations to both talented young men, their families, and their coaches.
Malvestuto, who will enter his senior season at Niagara-Wheatfield High School (Section VI) still seeking his first NYS Division I title, has been on the national radar since 2007 when he won the NHSCA Freshmen National Title. He did so in incredibly impressive fashion, outscoring his three opponents by a margin of 32-6….In a return trip to Virginia Beach in 2008 the future Hokie was nearly as good, finishing third with his only loss suffered at the hands of National runner-up, Pennsylvania’s Andre Petroski ,(who himself recently made a college commitment—To the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill)..As a junior, Malvestuto would again return to the NHSCA finals. However, unlike his previous journey, 2009 would be a year of heartbreak as he dropped a hard fought 8-6 decision to teammate Tyler Beckwith (#11 rated recruit committed to Binghamton)…Should he succeed in making All-American again at the national tournament in 2010, Malvestuto will put himself into a select company, becoming one of the first scholastic wrestlers to be a place-winner in all four grade levels (the freshmen national tournament originated in 2007, making the current senior class the first that is eligible to earn this distinction).
While he does not yet have the NYS hardware in his trophy case, it would misleading if I failed to make mention of how accomplished Malvestuto has been on the state level….Already a three-time New York State placewinner heading into 2010, Malvestuto has never finished below fourth in Albany, including a pair of bronze medal performances the past two years.
Projected as a 184-pounder on the next level, Malvestuto appears to be the favorite to replace NCAA qualifier, Tommy Spellman after the latter graduates in 2011…The hiring of former Iowa State 2x All-American/2007 National runner-up Kurt Backes as an assistant coach should serve as a significant factor in making the transition from high school to college as smooth as possible.
By giving a verbal to VT, Malvestuto joined a recruiting class that is already showing signs that it would be among the top in the nation this season….Accompanying the pride of Niagara-Wheatfield will be a pair of fellow top-100 recruits in the persons of #13 Devin Carter and #34 Ty Mitch.
Carter is a 2x Virginia State Champion, the 2009 Junior Freestyle National runner-up, as well as a two-time Walsh Ironman runner-up…D1collegeWrestling.net projects him as a 133-pounder on the collegiate level…Also expected to make his impact as a career lightweight is Mitch, the 2x Ohio State Champion who this past Summer added a Junior National Freestyle title to his eye popping resume.
Another top 125/133 recruit that is Blacksburg bound is two-time Georgia State Champion, TJ Mitchell…A fourth place finisher at the 2009 NHSCA Junior National tournament, Mitchell will be called upon to act as competent workout partner for Carter and Mitch, as well as 2009 ACC Newcomer of the Year, Jarrod Garnett and top 2009 recruit Eric Spjut.
One thing is certain….With elite recruiting classes in each of his seasons at the helm of the Hokie wrestling program, Coach Dresser must feel confident that it will not be long until his team finds their way atop the conference standings.