Kacie Albert – ELSM Staff Writer
MANHEIM, PA – With all collegiate events scheduled for the 2012 portion of the season nearly completed, teams from the Division II and III, NAIA, NJCAA and Women’s division are now looking to 2013 and the NWCA/Cliff Keen Multi-National Duals.
The 2013 NWCA/Cliff Keen Multi-National Duals Presented by Hibiclens and the Marines will occur from January 12-13, 2012 at the Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield, Illinois. The top 16 teams from Division II, Division III and the NAIA division have been invited to compete in addition to the top 8 teams from the NJCAA and Women’s divisions.
Augustana, Findlay, Fort Hays, Grand Canyon, Kutztown, Limestone, Minnesota State Mankato, Minot State, Newberry, Notre Dame, St. Could State, Nebraska Kearney, UNC Pembroke, Univ. of Central Oklahoma, Upper Iowa, and UW-Parkside have been invited to attend for the Division II competition.
Currently Nebraska-Kearney is atop the rankings for Division II programs and has maintained that position since the release of the NCAA pre-season rankings.
Individually, wrestlers from Nebraska Kearney rank within the top eight in five of the weight classes, with Raufeon Stotts ranked number one at 149 pounds.
Augsburg, Centenary, Coe, Cortland State, Dubuque, Elmhurst, Ithaca, John Hopkins, Johnson & Wales, Luther, Olivet, Springfield College, UW Lacrosse, UW Whitewater, Wartburg and Wesleyen have been invited to attend for the Division III competition.
“The National Duals is one of the highlight events of our season, “ said Wartburg Head Coach James Miller. “It is a unique opportunity to compete with the very best teams in the country. In Division III the top eight ranked teams are all attending.”
Wartburg enters the competition ranked number one according to NCAA polls, as they have been all season. Wartburg wrestling will enter the competition undefeated, with a current record of 6-0.
“We embrace being ranked number one. If others think we are worthy of that ranking we are honored by it, but we know it needs to be earned and the National Duals is the first big stage for that,” said Miller.
Wartburg University has wrestlers within the top eight for all ten weight classes with Kenny Anderson and Landon Williams atop the 133 and 165 weight classes respectively.
Baker, Campbellsville, Dickinson State, Grand View, Great Falls, Indiana Tech, Lindsey Wilson, Midland Lutheran, Missouri Baptist, Missouri Valley, Morningside, MSU Northern, Oklahoma City, Southern Oregon, Univ. of the Cumberlands and York have been invited to attend for the NAIA division.
The Multi-National Duals allow for NAIA teams to compete against multiple other NAIA teams. The matchups are often difficult feats to accomplish due to the geographical spread of the teams that are a part of the NAIA.
“The National Duals give us the opportunity wrestle the best teams in our division before the nationals,” said Oklahoma City Head Coach Archie Randall. “NAIA teams are so far apart in distance this is the only time we get to see some of the competition.”
Grand View enters the competition as the top ranked team in the NAIA division, a ranking that the team has maintained since preseason. Last year entering their fourth year as a program Grand View captured the National Duals Team Championship and went on to win the NAIA Championship in March.
Colby, Harper, Iowa Central, Iowa Lakes, Labette, Lincoln, Neosho and Niagra have been invited to attend for the NJCAA division.
Labette is currently the number two ranked team in the NJCAA division and has maintained that ranking since preseason. Labette has eight wrestlers ranked within the top 12 of their weight classes and are led by Trey Page who is currently ranked number one at 285 pounds.
Cumberlands, King, Lindenwood, Missouri Valley, Oklahoma City, Simon Fraser, Waldorf and Wayland Baptist have been invited to attend for the Women’s division.
Oklahoma City is currently the top ranked women’s team and has fifteen wrestlers ranked within the top eight of their respective weight class.
The Stars are led by top ranked wrestlers Emily Webster at 101 pounds, Michaela Hutchison at 123 pounds, Audrey Morehouse at 130 pounds, Jennifer Page at 143 pounds, Kristie Davis at 155 pounds and Brittany Delgado at 191 pounds.
Oklahoma City University is the only school attending who is competing in two different divisions. Randall will lead both a NAIA division men’s team and Women’s division team.
“It allows me to coach both teams at the event,” said Randall. “We have been competitive in both divisions which shows the strength of our program.”
Randall is excited for the duals and hopes that his women’s team will advance to the finals and the men’s team, who is currently ranked seventh in the NAIA, will reach the top four.
“Both teams want to win the tournament,” said Randall. “Their training and mental preparation is the same.”
Tickets to the event on sale and can be purchased via Ticketmaster. For additional pricing, seating and purchasing information, visit the Ticketmaster site. For more event information, go to the National Duals page at nwcaonline.com.
About the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA): The National Wrestling Coaches Association, established in 1928, is a non-profit organization for the advancement of all levels of the sport of wrestling with primary emphasis on developing coaches who work in academic environments. The membership embraces all people interested in amateur wrestling. The three core competencies of the NWCA are: coaching development, student-athlete welfare, and promotion of wrestling.
About Cliff Keen: Cliff Keen Athletic is a wrestling and officials wear company, dedicated to the advancement of athletics through innovative products and communications. Cliff Keen Athletic exemplifies the rich traditions of sport and the superior quality of athletic wear required for holding up to the rigors of competition.
About Hibiclens: Hibiclens is an antiseptic antimicrobial skin cleanser possessing bactericidal properties that can be part of an effective defense for preventing the spread of skin infections. Its active ingredient works in a unique way — it kills germs on contact and bonds to the skin to keep killing microorganisms up to 6 hours after washing. Hibiclens® has been proven to kill MRSA (in vitro) and other staph infections.
About the United States Marine Corps: On November 10, 1775, the Marine Corps was established by the Second Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Since then, the Marine Corps, through service on land, in air, and at sea, have acquitted themselves with the greatest distinction, winning new honors on each occasion until the term “Marine” has come to signify all that is highest in military efficiency and soldierly virtue. Whether facing our nation’s foes or conducting humanitarian relief and disaster recovery operations at home or abroad, today’s Marine Corps stands ready to continue in the same proud tradition of faithful service to the United States. For more information, visit http://www.Marines.com.