TIFFIN, Ohio—The Heidelberg University wrestling team was picked to finish in third place in the Ohio Athletic Conference regular season dual standings and in a tie for third at the 2011 OAC Tournament in a vote by the league coaches, announced today by the OAC office. The Berg received 16 of a possible 25 points in the dual season poll and 15 of 25 points in the tournament poll, tying John Carroll University.
The University of Mount Union was unanimously selected in both polls, totaling 25 points and five first-place votes. Ohio Northern University was selected second in both polls, receiving 20 points in the dual season poll and 21 in the tournament poll, and one first-place vote in each. Coaches could not vote for their own team.
Following the Berg in the dual season poll were JCU (15) and Muskingum University and Baldwin-Wallace College (seven) in a tie for fifth.
In the tournament poll, B-W (eight) edged Muskingum (six) for fifth place.
The Berg returns five starters from last season’s team that placed second at the 2011 OAC Tournament, including individual champions and national qualifiers in senior 133-pounder Tom D’Alessandro (Mayfield/Mayfield Heights) and junior 149-pounder Andrew Johnson (Weston/Ostego). Senior Jerry Knapp (Columbia Station/Olmsted Falls), who advanced to the championship match in the 285-pound weight class last season, also returns, along with sophomore 141-pounder Chris Osborne (McComb) and sophomore 184-pounder Jason Russell (Columbus/West).
First-year head coach Ned Shuck welcomes the addition of incoming 117-pounder Dylan Norwood (Euclid), 133-pounder Brendan Walsh (Amelia/Cincinnati Moeller), 141-pounder J.C. Giffin (Painesville/Fairport Harding), 165-pounder Brendan Kelly (Clinton Township/De La Salle) and 285-pounder Tyler Smith (Calhoun/Sonoraville). Each are expected to provide depth to a squad that features just 10 juniors and seniors.
Heidelberg’s season begins Saturday, Nov. 5 at the Eastern Michigan Open in Ypsilanti at 9 a.m. The Student Princes open their 2011-12 home slate with Olivet (Mich.) College on Tuesday, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m.