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KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Grand View (Iowa) becomes the fourth different No. 1-ranked team for the 2011-12 season as the Vikings earned 119 team points in the fourth installment of the NAIA Wrestling Coaches' Top 20 poll, the national office announced Wednesday. Fresh off its first-ever victory at the NWCA / Cliff Keen National Duals in Springfield, Ill, from Jan. 7 - 8, Grand View boasts the top spot for the first time in school history. The Vikings started wrestling in the 2008 - 09 season and reached the No. 2 spot on multiple occasions with the last coming in the Dec. 21 edition.
Heavyweight Eric Thompson (16-0) is the lone Viking in the No. 1 position. He was named the National Duals Outstanding Wrestler, as he went 3-0 over ranked opponents, including a fall over previous-No. 1 Leviticus Roberson of Midland (Neb.). Grand View next hosts its first dual of the season on Saturday when former NAIA member Lindenwood (Mo.) visits.
Southern Oregon slides up one spot after losing, 19-18, in the championship bout in Springfield. With 114 team points, the Raiders land 125-pounder Mitchell Lofstedt in the top position. The 21-1 junior has been the No. 1-ranked wrestler in all five polls this year.
Previous No. 1 Great Falls (Ore.) falls to third with 86 points. Anthony Varnell at 141 pounds is listed in the No. 1 spot with a 16-2 record. Varnell is one of 11 Argonauts ranked individually.
Campbellsville (Ky.) checks in with 80 points and a No. 4 ranking. The Tigers are back in the top five after a No. 8 spot in the Dec. 21 edition. No. 5 Oklahoma City, who landed two No. 1 wrestlers, posted 76 points. Nikolas Turner at 157 pounds and Kevin Hardy at 165, are the Stars recognized in the No. 1 spot.
Five weight classes are filled by teams outside the top five: Adam Joseph at 133 (Concordia (Neb.)); Eric Burgey at 149 (William Penn (Iowa)); Joseph Sievert at 174 (Morningside (Iowa)); Brian Block at 184 (Morningside) and Nicholas Leither at 197 (Northwestern (Iowa)). Block moved up from the fourth spot in the previous ranking.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the Qualifying Groups. The next poll will be announced Jan. 25.
Notes: Grand View (Iowa) is the fourth different team to be ranked No. 1 this year in five total polls joining Southern Oregon, Campbellsville (Ky.) and Great Falls (Mont.)... Four weight classes have had the same top-ranked grappler in all five polls issued (125 pounds, 141, 149, 174)... Southern Oregon has held a top-three ranking in all polls this year.
|Rank||Prvs. Rank||School||Total Team Points|
|1||2||Grand View (Iowa)||119|
|3||1||Great Falls (Mont.)||86|
|6||5||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||57.5|
|15||16||Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.)||26.5|
|17||18||William Penn (Iowa)||22|
|20||RV||Dickinson State (N.D.)||13.5|
Others receiving votes: Menlo (Calif.) 12.5; Indiana Tech 7.5; Waldorf (Iowa) 6.5; York (Neb.) 4; Truett-McConnell (Ga.) 1.5; Hastings (Neb.) 1; Bacone (Okla.) 1.
Top-Ranked Individuals | Individual Rankings (PDF)
125 - Mitchell Lofstedt, Southern Oregon
133 - Adam Joseph, Concordia (Neb.)
141 - Anthony Varnell, Great Falls (Mont.)
149 - Eric Burgey, William Penn (Iowa)
157 - Nikolas Turner, Oklahoma City
165 - Kevin Hardy, Oklahoma City
174 - Joseph Sievert, Morningside (Iowa)
184 - Brian Block, Morningside (Iowa)
197 - Nicholas Leither, Northwestern (Iowa)
HWT - Eric Thompson, Grand View (Iowa)