SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Cal Poly officially opens its 2009-10 wrestling Saturday afternoon with a 1 p.m. Pacific-10 Conference dual meet at Cal State Fullerton.
John Azevedo, entering his seventh season as head coach of the Mustangs, will utilize three NCAA qualifiers and six returning Pac-10 Conference Championship placewinners in the season-opening dual meet against the Titans.
Senior Chase Pami heads the list of returning Mustangs. The Cimarron Memorial High School (Las Vegas, NV) graduate placed seventh at the NCAA finals following his second Pac-10 title at 157 pounds. He was 27-9 as a junior, including a 9-1 mark in duals.
Junior Filip Novachkov also qualified for the NCAA finals and posted a 1-2 mark at 133 pounds. He placed third at the Pac-10 finals and finished with a 23-9 overall record.
His younger brother, Boris Novachkov, redshirted the 2008-09 season after compiling a 15-6 mark as a freshman, placing third in the Pac-10 finals and qualifying for the NCAA Championships.
Other returning Pac-10 placewinners are sophomore Ryan DesRoches, senior Eric Maldonado and sophomore Bo Lukehart.
DesRoches placed fourth at 174 pounds and finished the year 16-13 while Maldonado claimed fifth place at 149 pounds and was 12-13 for the season. Lukehart was 7-18 overall and placed seventh at 197 pounds.
Cal Poly has produced nine champions in three preseason open tournaments.
DesRoches won the 174-pound title in the Cuesta and Menlo opens and sports a 6-0 mark. All six wins are by fall.
Lenny Romero at 285 won the Menlo Open title last weekend while Steven Vasquez claimed the 174-pound title at Cuesta two weeks ago.
Cal State Fullerton will send five Pac-10 placewinners and one NCAA qualifier against the Mustangs on Saturday.
Adin Duenas was third in the Pac-10 finals a year ago, qualified for the NCAA finals and finished 16-9 on the year at 141. He will compete in the 44th NWCA All-Star Classic on Nov. 22 in Titan Gym.
Also selected to compete in the All-Star Classic is Titan 197-pounder John Drake, who was 16-10 a year ago and placed sixth in the Pac-10 finals.
Other Titan standouts include 125-pounder Andre Gonzalez, 17-14 a year ago and seventh in the Pac-10 finals; 285-pounder Kurt Klimek, 18-14 overall and fifth in the Pac-10 finals a year ago; and 174-pounder Todd Noel, a Righetti High School graduate who was 20-19 as a freshman and 15-17 as a sophomore at Cal State Fullerton, placing sixth in last year's Pac-10 finals.
Gonzalez, Noel and 149-pounder Matt Lopez earned titles at the Embry-Riddle Open last weekend while Klimek finished first at 285 in the Cal Baptist Open two weeks ago.
The Mustangs have 12 dual meets on the schedule, six at home in January and February, and also will compete in the Missouri Open, Las Vegas Invitational, the Reno Tournament of Champions and the All-California Open.
The 2010 Pac-10 finals are slated for Feb. 26-27 at UC Davis and the NCAA Championships will be held March 18-20 in Omaha, Neb.
Cal Poly at Cal State Fullerton
125 -- Micah Ferguson (CP) vs. Andre Gonzalez (CSF)
133 -- Boris Novachkov (CP) vs. Eddie Garcia (CSF)
141 -- Filip Novachkov (CP) vs. Adin Duenas (CSF)
149 -- Eric Maldonado (CP) vs. Matt Lopez (CSF) or Nick Jordan (CSF)
157 -- Chase Pami (CP) vs. Matt Lopez (CSF) or Nick Jordan (CSF)
165 -- Steven Vasquez (CP) vs. Clayton Schulke (CSF)
174 -- Ryan DesRoches (CP) vs. Todd Noel (CSF)
184 -- Tyler Holt (CP) vs. Dylan Klink (CSF) or Mark Savalle (CSF)
197 -- Ryan Smith (CP) vs. John Drake (CSF)
285 -- Lenny Romero (CP) vs. Kurt Klimek (CSF)