WWC announces West Regional Pre-Seeds for Saturday

FARGO, N.D. – The Western Wrestling Conference announced on Wednesday the pre-seed rankings for the 2015 NCAA West Regional/WWC Championship, which will be hosted by North Dakota State at the Bentson Bunker Fieldhouse in Fargo on Saturday, March 7.

Winners of the NCAA West Regional weight classes earn bids to the NCAA Championships. The event also serves as the conference championship. The WWC is comprised of six schools including the Air Force Academy, North Dakota State, Northern Colorado, South Dakota State, Utah Valley and Wyoming.

NDSU won its first West Regional/WWC Championship team title in school history last year after edging out the former four-time champion Wyoming Cowboys by eight points (74-66). The Bison also earned their second regular-season WWC dual championship in the past three seasons this year by going a perfect 5-0 in conference dual meets in 2014-15.

The pre-seeds were voted on by the conference coaches and ranked the top six wrestlers for each weight class. Final seeds for bracketing will be determined Friday evening at the coaches’ seeding meeting.

The NCAA recently released all the allocations for the 2015 Division I Wrestling Championships and the West Regional/WWC has been awarded 19 automatic qualifier spots. The breakdown of the 19 automatic bids per weight class are as follows: 125 (5), 133 (1), 141 (1), 149 (1), 157 (1), 165 (2), 174 (2), 184 (2), 197 (2) and 285 (2).

After all the qualifying events have concluded, the NCAA DI Wrestling Committee will meet in-person to select the remaining 70 at-large qualifiers, which will be announced on March 11. All weight classes will consist of 33 wrestlers. Last year the WWC had four of its wrestlers receive at-large selections.

Qualifiers from this weekend’s NCAA West Regional will compete at the 2015 NCAA Championships, which will be held March 19-21 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

NCAA West Regional/Western Wrestling Conference Championships

2015 NCAA WEST REGIONAL/WWC CHAMPIONSHIP PRE-SEEDS

125 pounds (top five placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Josh Rodriguez (NDSU)
2. Tyler Cox (WYO)
3. Josh Martinez (AFA)
4. Chasen Tolbert (UVU)
5. Trey Andrews (UNC)
6. Isaac Andrade (SDSU)

133 pounds (winner receives NCAA automatic bid)
1. Jade Rauser (UVU)
2. Drew Templeman (WYO)
3. Brance Simms (SDSU)
4. Anthony McHugh (AFA)
5. Kyle Gilva (NDSU)
6. Michael Espinoza (UNC)

141 pounds (winner receives NCAA automatic bid)
1. Mitch Bengtson (NDSU)
2. Luke Zilverberg (SDSU)
3. Carter McElhany (AFA)
4. Ben Polkowske (UNC)
5. Cole Mendenhall (WYO)
6. Matthew Ontiveros (UVU)

149 pounds (winner receives NCAA automatic bid)
1. Clay Ream (NDSU)
2. Alex Kocer (SDSU)
3. Jake Elliott (WYO)
4. Gerald McGinty (AFA)
5. Trevor Willson (UVU)
6. Nick Adams (UNC)

157 pounds (winner receives NCAA automatic bid)
1. Cody Pack (SDSU)
2. Archie Colgan (WYO)
3. Beau Roberts (UNC)
4. Grant Nehring (NDSU)
5. Sam Kreimier (AFA)
6. Logan Addis (UVU)

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165 pounds (top two placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Dakota Friesth (WYO)
1. Jesse Stafford (AFA)
3. Mitchell Polkowske (UNC)
4. John Nething II (SDSU)
5. Steven Keogh (NDSU)
6. Dalton Harmon (UVU)

174 pounds (top two placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Andy McCulley (WYO)
2. Kurtis Julson (NDSU)
3. David Kocer (SDSU)
4. Ethan Smith (UVU)
5. Scott Reilly (AFA)
6. Josh VanTine (UNC)

184 pounds (top two placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Hayden Zillmer (NDSU)
2. Ben Stroh (WYO)
3. Brady Ayers (SDSU)
4. Ross Taylor (UVU)
5. Zen Ikehara (AFA)
6. Keith Johnson (UNC)

197 pounds (top two placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Shane Woods (WYO)
2. Trent Noon (UNC)
3. Nate Rotert (SDSU)
4. Derek Thomas (UVU)
5. Jack Carda (AFA)
6. Tommy Petersen (NDSU)

285 pounds (top two placers receive NCAA automatic bids)
1. Evan Knutson (NDSU)
2. Tanner Harms (WYO)
3. J.J. Everard (SDSU)
4. Brian Macchione (UNC)
5. Marcus Malecek (AFA)
6. Jordan Karst (UVU)

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