Willy Girard heads to NCAA Nationals: BU wrestler will represent Huskies in Pittsburgh


Matt Rushforth, Sports Editor

Junior Willy Girard of the Bloomsburg University wrestling team will head to Pittsburgh, PA to represent BU at the 2019 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, which will be held at PPG Paints Arena. Girard enters the 125-pound bracket as the  number 32 seed and will face number 33-seeded Trey Chalifoux of Army on Thursday morning.

The two will face off in the “pigtail” match with the winner getting the right to wrestle number one-seeded Sebastian Rivera of Northwestern University in the opening round.

Girard enjoyed a fantastic junior year campaign as he heads into the NCAA Division 1 Championships with a 23-11 overall record. Girard also became the Huskies’ first Eastern Wrestling League (EWL) Champion since 2014, after he defeated Lock Haven University’s Luke Werner, 9-8, in the second tiebreaker.

Bloomsburg as a team finished the 2018-19 season with a 3-13 (1-5 EWL) overall record and a fifth-place finish at the EWL championships that were held March 9 in Fairfax, Virginia.

Girard was the first EWL Champion from BU since 2014 when Huskies great Rich Perry won the 197-pound bracket. Perry was also the last wrestler from Bloomsburg to clinch a position at the Division 1 NCAA Championships.

Girard is no stranger to his opponent in the opening round. Girard is 0-3 in his collegiate career against Chalifoux, the last meeting being back on Nov. 18 at the Army Black Knight Invitational, where Chalifoux walked away with a major 18-6 decision victory.

The winner of Chalifoux and Girard will go on to face the number one-seeded Rivera later on Thursday morning, and the loser will fall to the 125-pound consolation bracket.