By Kacie Albert, Elite Level Sports Marketing
WASHINGTON D.C. – The 133-pound bout at the 2012 NWCA All-Star Classic presented by the United States Marine Corps will feature Chris Dardanes of Minnesota wrestling against Aaron (A.J.) Schopp of Edinboro, rekindling a rivalry from the 2012 NCAA Championships between the redshirt sophomores.
Dardanes began his rookie season outside of the Gopher starting lineup. It was not until Dardanes won the Southern Scuffle that he earned the starting spot at 133 pounds. Following his placement as a starter, Dardanes mounted a successful season placing sixth at the Big Ten Championships and fourth at the NCAA Championships, earning himself All-American honors.
Dardanes was named Most Improved Wrestler of the Year by his teammates and received Big Ten All-Academic honors.
Dardanes finished the 2011-2012 season 25-12 overall, 7-4 in duals and 5-2 in Big Ten competition. Dardanes registered six pins, a technical fall and seven major decision wins during the 2011-2012 season.
Schopp began his rookie season with a title win at the Buffalo Open. Schopp finished his season winning three additional titles: MSU Open Champion, PSAC Champion, and EWL Champion. With his win at the EWL Championships, Schopp qualified for the NCAA Championships.
Schopp was named Freshman and Rookie of the Year by his teammates for the 2011-2012 season.
Schopp finished the 2011-2012 season 39-6 overall and 12-1 in duals. Schopp registered 19 falls, the third-most by any wrestler on his team, seven technical falls and two major decision wins during the 2011-2012 season.
It will be the pair’s seccond-ever meeting. In the second round of the NCAA Championships, Dardanes, the 10th-seed, defeated Schopp, the seventh-seed, in a 7-3 decision.
The NWCA Classic serves as a premier event to help grow the sport of wrestling. Proceeds from the event will go towards supporting the sport in the Washington DC area.
2012 NWCA ALL-STAR CLASSIC
AMERICAN UNIVERSITY, WASHINGTON, D.C.
NOVEMBER 3, 2012 – BENDER ARENA
125: #2 Nico Megaludis, So. Penn State vs. #3 Jesse Delgado, So. Illinois
133: #4 Chris Dardanes, So. Minnesota vs. #7 A.J. Schopp, So. Edinboro
141: #1 Kendric Maple, Jr. Oklahoma vs. #6 B.J. Futrell, Sr. Illinois
157: #3 Dylan Alton, So. Penn State vs. #4 Jason Welch, Sr. Northwestern
165: #1 (at 157) Kyle Dake, Sr. Cornell vs. #1 David Taylor, Jr. Penn State
174: #2 Jordan Blanton, Sr. Illinois vs. #4 (at 165) Josh Asper, Sr. Maryland
184: #3 Robert Hamlin, Sr. Lehigh vs. #4 Kevin Steinhaus, Jr. Minnesota
197: #2 Matt Wilps, Sr. Pittsburgh vs. #3 Quentin Wright, Sr. Penn State
285: #4 Mike McMullan, So. Northwestern vs. #5 Dom Bradley, Sr. Missouri