2018 Mideast Region Preview

Top-ranked Troy Stanich is undefeated this season

Date – Saturday and Sunday, February 24-25, 2018

Location – Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY

Teams (17) – Brockport, Centenary, Cortland, Elizabethtown, Hunter, Ithaca, Keystone, Mount St. Vincent, Muhlenberg, Oneonta, Oswego, RIT, Scranton, Stevens, TCNJ, Ursinus, USMMA

Top Ten Ranked Individuals (2017 All-Americans in bold)
125 – Jonathan Haas (Brockport, 3)
133 – Troy Stanich (Stevens, 1), Austin Sisco (Oneonta, 10)
141 – Brett Kaliner (Stevens, 3), Ben Brisman (Ithaca, 4), Joe Ghione (Elizabethtown, 5), Max Nauta (Centenary, 8)
149 – Sean Peacock (Brockport, 10)
157 – Zach Wilhelm (Stevens, 4)
165 – Nick Velez (Ithaca, 3)
174 – Dan Kilroy (TCNJ, 7)
184 – Jake Ashcraft (Ithaca, 1)
197 – Triston Engle (Brockport, 6), Etinii Udott (Centenary, 9)
285 – Jake O’Brien (Ithaca, 2), James Bethel (Oneonta, 3)

Top 30 Teams (d3wrestle.com list)
3. Ithaca
6. Stevens
15. Brockport
23. Centenary
25. Oneonta
30. TCNJ

Ithaca was 2nd in the Northeast region last year and is the top team here. With four wrestlers ranked in the top four and a third place finish at the National Duals, the Bombers are a formidable team. Jake Ashcraft has ascended to the top spot at 184 lbs. and is supported by past All-Americans Nick Velez and Jake O’Brien. Stevens will give Ithaca a test here. The Ducks lineup is heavily slanted to the first six weights, but all six of them won the Centennial Conference two weekends ago. Top ranked Troy Stanich has just one loss in two years and will be a favorite to win the whole thing in Cleveland. All-American Zach Wilhelm, NCAA qualifier Dylan Van Sickell, and Centennial champ Thomas Poklikuha are all tough returners along with freshman start Brett Kaliner.

Brockport returns a pair of All-Americans in Jonathan Haas and Triston Engle. Haas was ranked #1 until a recent loss and finished 3rd in the NCAA last season. Engle has 24 pins and was 4th in the nation last year. Oneonta and TCNJ each return a 2017 All-American. Dan Kilroy placed 8th as a freshman for TCNJ and returns in his quest to move up the podium. James Bethel was an All-American in 2015 for Oneonta, took 2016 off, and then returned in 2017 to place again. He is ranked third but will have to deal with #2 O’Brien if he wants to win this weekend.

The 141 lbs. weight class is extremely tough here with four ranked wrestlers. #3 Brett Kaliner has given Stevens an outstanding freshman for the second straight year. #4 Ben Brisman of Ithaca spent most of last year at 149 but has settled in at 141 this year and been outstanding. Joe Ghione of Elizabethtown transferred in for his final season and a late drop to 141 has proven to be the right call as he has dominated at the weight. Max Nauta is the only returner at this weight of the four and he qualified for the NCAA Championships out of the East region. His only DIII loss this year is an 8-7 setback to Brisman last month. Someone very good will not get to go to Cleveland at 141 in the Mideast.