With a 9-9 dual meet record during the regular season, the Shippensburg University wrestling team posted its most wins since 2016-17 and its first .500 or better record in dual meets since 2015-16.
The progress the Raiders have made fusing a largely young roster along side a handful of key veterans has been significant, but that progress will carry an even greater impact if they can couple the improved dual meet success with individual glory, beginning this weekend at the 2023 NCAA Division II Super Region Championships, which begin 10 a.m. Saturday at East Stroudsburg University’s Koehler Fieldhouse.
“The drive that these kids have, which I wasn’t really sure about when they came with them being so young [is impressive]. They want to win, and that is the first step toward being successful. They want to accomplish something,” said Shippensburg University head coach Seth Bloomquist.
This is the fifth year that NCAA Division II operates with six Super Regions, meaning the Top 3 finishers at each weight class on Saturday will advance to the 2023 NCAA Division II National Championships on March 10-11 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
More information about the Super Region 1 Championships, including the projected schedule, can be accessed through the East Stroudsburg home page linked above.
Super Region 1 is comprised of 11 teams – the eight PSAC Division II wrestling programs (East Stroudsburg, Gannon, Kutztown, Mercyhurst, Millersville, Pitt-Johnstown, Seton Hill and Shippensburg) – along with independents American International, Alderson Broaddus and Fairmont State.
Shippensburg is looking to advance at least one wrestler to the NCAA Division II Championships for the 20th consecutive season that it has competed. Graduate Tyshawn White (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin (Clarion/Lock Haven/Glenville State)) was a 2022 national qualifier; placing second at regionals before a third-place finish – and All-American honors – at the national tournament.
This time around, redshirt-junior Danny Scheib (Hegin, Pa./Tri-Valley) is a contender to advance after placing sixth at the Super Region 1 Championships in 2022. Graduate transfers Avery Shay (New Fairfield, Ct./New Fairfield (Clarion)) and Al Miscovich (Mount Pleasant, Pa./Mount Pleasant Area (UPJ)) are both making their debut at the Super Regionals and are both likely to be tough outs.
The Raiders have had two weeks since their last competitive dual meet to prepare for the Super Region 1 Tournament. That has given the wrestlers some time to reset their bodies both mentally and physically.
“Right now I am trying to remember my goals and what they were when I set them at the beginning of the season,” Miscovich said. “It’s a super long season. When you come in you are fired up, but at the end of the season you get tired. Mentally and physically. It is really important to remind yourself everyday what your goals are. Mine is to become an All-American. I constantly remind myself of that.”
“You sort of have to erase the season,” Coach Bloomquist noted. “You only need to be good that day. It’s different than other sports. You can’t focus on the past, you have to look toward the future. You have to forget about the mistakes that you have made, build upon the season and most of believe that you can be in that top three. Believe that you can win and the rest will take care of itself. That has primarily been our focus.”
The final seeds and brackets will be determined Friday night in a coaches meeting.
Shippensburg’s Probable Lineup (subject to change):
125: No wrestler
133: No wrestler
141: Al Miscovich (Gr., 15-7, 3 pins, 2 TF, 1 MDs)
This will be Miscovich’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
149: Reese Polulak (Fr., 6-5, 1 pin, 0 TF, 2 MDs)
This will be Polulak’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
157: Avery Shay (Gr., 10-1, 5 pins, 1 TF, 1 MD)
This will be Shay’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
165: Kyler Everly (Fr., 11-11, 5 pins, 1 TFs, 2 MDs)
This will be Everly’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
174: Nyiem Flucas (R-So., 2-5, 0 pins, 0 TFs, 0 MDs)
Flucas has competed once at the Super Region 1 Championships (0-2 at 174 in 2022)
184: Owen Koch (Fr., 12-10, 2 pins, 1 TFs, 2 MDs)
This will be Koch’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
197: Trey Shoemaker (Fr., 17-7, 14 pins, 0 TFs, 1 MDs)
This will be Showmaker’s debut at the Super Region 1 Championships.
285: Danny Scheib (R-Jr., 13-3, 7 pins, 1 TF, 1 MDs)
Scheib has competed once at the Super Region 1 Championships (2-3 (sixth place) at 285 in 2022)