Riley Lefever is the most dominant wrestler in Division III
INDIANAPOLIS -- The NCAA has released the updated standings for the 2017 NCAA Wrestling Awards that will be awarded in March at the respective Division I, II and III Wrestling Championships.
The inaugural NCAA Wrestling Awards were presented at the 2012 wrestling championships. The three awards, given in each division, honor the Most Dominant Wrestler as well as the student-athletes that have accumulated the most falls and the most technical falls throughout the course of the regular and postseasons.
For falls and tech falls to be counted they must come against opponents in the same division. Ties in the two categories are broken based on the aggregate time.
In Division I, Penn State 149-pounder Zain Retherford raised his top average to 5.61 team points per match in the race for the Most Dominant Wrestler. Three other wrestlers are also averaging over 5.25 team points per match with Nittany Lions' Jason Nolf (5.44) and Bo Nickal (5.29), along with the national leader in falls, Gabe Dean, of Cornell (5.43).
Francis Mizia, of Mercyhurst, the 2015 champion for most technical falls, leads the Division II Most Dominant Wrestler standings with an average of 4.89 points at 165 pounds for a sliver of a lead of .01 over Wisconsin-Parkside 184-pounder Montrail Johnson.
Three-time national champion and the 2016 Division III Most Dominant Wrestler Riley Lefever, of Wabash, is in position to win the award again with an average of 5.81 points. Wartburg heavyweight Lance Evans is second with an average of 5.28.
The Most Dominant Wrestler standings are calculated by adding the total number of points awarded through match results and dividing that number by the total number of matches wrestled. Points per match are awarded as follows.
This week's Most Dominant Wrestler standings are calculated with a 16-match minimum against wrestlers from the same division.
Dean has 15 falls this season to lead Division I, while Retherford and Rider 165-pounder Chad Walsh have each tallied 13 falls.
Western State 125-pounder Ronald Wardleigh has taken the lead in Division II with 13 falls to lead Tiffin heavyweight Garrett Gray with 12.
Hunter Harris, of Messiah, has pulled ahead in Division III with 26 falls this season at 141 pounds, four more than his nearest competitor.
True freshman Jack Mueller, of Virginia, leads Division I in tech falls with 10 this season at 125 pounds, but is only holding off two-time national champion Isaiah Martinez, of Illinois, by aggregate time. Mueller's 10 tech falls have come in 38:47, while Martinez has 10 in 53:24.
Nic Goebel, of Findlay, has surged to the lead in Division II tech falls with 10 at 157 pounds, three ahead of Martin Ramirez, of Adams State, and Nicholas Fiegener, of California Baptist.
Stephen Jarrell, of Johnson & Wales (Rhode Island), has 17 tech falls at 174 pounds to hold a lead of five over three wrestlers with 12.