Washington, DC - Four American University wrestlers – Gage Curry, Brett Dempsey, Michael Sprague and Josh Terao – earned at-large bids to compete in next week's NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, the NCAA announced Tuesday.
Those four will join Jeric Kasunic at nationals, as Kasunic got his ticket with a fourth-place finish at last weekend's Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association Championships.
The 2018 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships will be held in Cleveland from March 15 to 17.
The five wrestlers heading to NCAAs are the most for AU since five went in 2012.
The four at-large bids given to American were among the 47 offered nationally by the NCAA Wrestling Committee. At-large selections were made based on head-to-head competition, quality wins, results against common opponents, winning percentage, rating percentage index, coaches ranking and qualifying event placement.
"I'm very appreciative that the committee could see the season that our team had, as opposed to the conference tournament that we had," said AU head coach Teague Moore. "It goes to show that the total body of work is valued.
"We are very happy for Gage, Josh, Michael and Brett. These men have worked extremely hard to put themselves in the right situation for this opportunity. Now it's time to prepare for Cleveland and let our best wrestling shine."
Brackets and seeds will be announced on Wednesday at 6 p.m. on NCAA.com on the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championship selection show.
• Curry, a redshirt freshman, is 22-14 this season at 125 pounds and placed fourth at the EIWA Championships.
• Dempsey, a fifth-year senior heavyweight at AU, is 18-11 this season, 64-59 in his career and was sixth at EIWAs.
• Kasunic, a senior 197-pounder, leads the Eagles with a 34-5 record and became only the eighth AU wrestler to reach the 100-win plateau in his career during his run to a fourth-place finish at EIWAs. He is 101-39 in his career and will be making his second NCAA Championships appearance.
• Sprague, a redshirt junior, is 23-13 at 149 pounds this year, 60-48 in his career and also placed sixth at the EIWA meet.
• Terao, also a redshirt junior, matched his win total from last year with a 29-8 mark, is 79-32 in his career and was fourth at 133 pounds at the EIWAs. He also will be making his second straight NCAA appearance.