BOILING SPRINGS – Gardner-Webb announced its 2016-2017 wrestling schedule Tuesday, featuring six home matches. Three of those home dates will come against ACC programs.
The Runnin' Bulldogs earned a share of the 2016 Southern Conference regular season title and will attempt to repeat that feat against another tough slate of league opponents – with five of its seven SoCon matches on the road in 2017.
Gardner-Webb opens the season with three bouts on Saturday, November 5, in Philadelphia. The 'Dogs will take on Shippensburg (Noon), Sacred Heart (1:30 pm) and host Drexel (3:00 pm) that afternoon.
Gardner-Webb will host three members of the ACC during its six-match home slate, beginning with Virginia on December 2 (7:00 pm). GWU will also wrestle in Paul Porter Arena against Duke on February 1 (7:00 pm) and North Carolina on February 10 (7:00 pm).
The Runnin' Bulldogs will also host MAC powerhouse Ohio on February 12 (1:00 pm) as part of its non-conference home slate.
Gardner-Webb will host VMI (Feb. 9) and Chattanooga (Feb. 3) in Southern Conference action, while traveling to face Campbell (Jan. 20), The Citadel (Jan. 21), Appalachian State (Jan. 24), SIU Edwardsville (Jan. 28) and Davidson (Feb. 12) in key league matches.
GWU will participate in its traditionally challenging series of tournaments throughout the season, including the Wolfpack Open (Nov. 20), the Cleveland State Open (Dec. 17) and the Southern Scuffle (Jan. 1-2).
Road non-conference opponents include Kent State (Feb. 16), South Dakota State (Jan. 28), Cleveland State (Feb. 18) and Northern Illinois (Feb. 18).
The 2016 Arby's SoCon Wrestling Championships will be held in Charleston, S.C., on March 4. The 2016 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships will be hosted in St. Louis, Mo., from March 16-18.
Gardner-Webb had three men qualify for last season's NCAA Championships.