EDMOND, Okla. — The Newberry Wolves’ wrestling team will enter the NCAA Division II National Tournament as the fifth-ranked team in the country after winning its sixth consecutive regional title in dominant fashion last weekend. Three Wolves are ranked in the top eight of their weight class.
Super Region III champion St. Cloud State enters nationals at No. 1, followed by Super Region II champion Notre Dame (Ohio). Super Region IV champion Nebraska-Kearney is third and Super Region II runner-up Central Oklahoma is fourth, followed by Super Region I champion Newberry in fifth.
The four teams ahead of Newberry are slated to send nine wrestlers each to the National Tournament on March 8-9 in Birmingham, Ala., while Newberry is scheduled to send eight wrestlers to nationals.
Blake Ridenour is the highest ranked individual for Newberry, coming in at sixth at 165 lbs. with a 30-7 record on the year. The junior went 4-0 to claim the Super Region I championship with three wins by pinfall.
Deral Brown is ranked seventh at 149 lbs. with a 36-5 record after claiming the Super Region I championship. Brown is on a 13-match winning streak entering the tournament.
Two-time national runner-up B.J. Young is ranked eighth nationally at 141 lbs. with a 34-9 record after a third place finish at the Super Region tournament. His first round opponent — Ryan Fillingame of Adams State — is ranked fourth nationally.