Lock Haven’s upset over Rutgers vaults Bald Eagles into USA Today/NWCA Division I Top 25 for first time in 15 years

Manheim, Pennsylvania —  With a large portion of the nation’s ranked Division I teams competing at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational, dual meet action was limited, but a small school in central Pennsylvania returned to the rankings after a decade and a half as the USA Today/NWCA Division I Coaches Poll was released on Tuesday.

Lock Haven (1-0) upset Rutgers (3-1) 22-16 at a sold-out Thomas Fieldhouse in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania to push the Bald Eagles into the Top 25 for the first time since November 26, 2002. Four of the five Lock Haven wins in the dual were by bonus points. Heavyweight Thomas Haines provided the exclamation point with a fall to clinch the team victory.

The Top 10 teams remained the same from last week, but there were some close calls in a pair of duals featuring ranked teams.

No. 1 Penn State (4-0) survived a scare from fifth-ranked Lehigh (4-1) at the PPL Center in Allentown. The dual set a “home” attendance record for the Mountain Hawks as it drew 9,896 fans. Nittany Lion heavyweight Nick Nevills earned a 2-0 win over Jordan Wood to clinch the 23-19 dual win for Penn State, its 35th in a row. Lehigh opened up the weekend with a 25-13 win at Princeton in EIWA action.

Iowa improved to 5-0 with a come-from-behind 18-17 win over visiting Illinois (1-2) at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Friday. Iowa’s Sam Stoll proved to be the hero as his fall over Deuce Rachal at 285 pounds gave Iowa the six points it needed to avoid the upset from the 15th-ranked Fighting Illini. Iowa’s won eight straight over Illinois.

Fourth-ranked Missouri improved to 7-0 after opening up the Mid-American Conference schedule with a 36-3 win over visiting Old Dominion. North Carolina State (8-0) stayed unbeaten, topping Old Dominion 25-15 and Chattanooga 41-(-1). South Dakota State (3-2) won three duals over non-Division I programs in Spearfish, South Dakota at the Dakota Showcase. The Jackrabbits topped Dakota Wesleyan 51-4, Northern State 45-4 and Augustana (S.D.) 49-0.

No. 22 Rider improved to 2-1 with a 19-15 win over Penn on Friday. The Broncs remained at No. 22 this week, ahead of two other EWL schools, Edinboro and Lock Haven. Stanford fell out of the Top 25.

The USA Today/NWCA Division I Wrestling Coaches Poll is comprised of two voting coaches from each Division I wrestling conference. Points are 25 for each first-place vote, 24 for second, 23 for third all the way to a 25th-place vote is one point.

Future Poll Dates (Tuesdays unless otherwise noted): December 12, December 19, January 3 (Wednesday), January 9, January 16, January 23, January 30, February 6, February 13, February 20, February, 27.

Rank Team (First) Record Points Conference Previous
1 Penn State (13) 4-0 397 Big Ten 1
2 Ohio State (3) 3-0 386 Big Ten 2
3 Oklahoma State 3-0 368 Big 12 3
4 Missouri 7-0 349 MAC 4
5 Lehigh 4-1 337 EIWA 5
6 NC State 8-0 321 ACC 6
7 Iowa 5-0 290 Big Ten 7
8 Minnesota 2-1 288 Big Ten 8
9 Michigan 1-1 266 Big Ten 9
10 Virginia Tech 3-1 257 ACC 10
11 Arizona State 2-2 231 Pac-12 12
12 Nebraska 2-0 229 Big Ten 13
13 Cornell 1-0 206 EIWA 14
14 Illinois 1-2 183 Big Ten 15
15 Northern Iowa 1-1 177 Big 12 16
16 Rutgers 3-1 155 Big Ten 11
17 South Dakota State 3-2 140 Big 12 17
18 Central Michigan 1-1 133 MAC 19
19 Wisconsin 2-0 131 Big Ten 18
20 Purdue 3-0 92 Big Ten 20
21 Oklahoma 1-2 72 Big 12 21
22 Rider 2-1 54 EWL 22
23 Edinboro 2-1 47 EWL 23
24 Lock Haven 1-0 24 EWL NR
25 Pittsburgh 1-2 20 ACC 24

Others Receiving Votes: Wyoming 10, Utah Valley 5, American 4, Northwestern 4, Drexel 3, Kent State 3, North Carolina 2
Dropped out: No. 25 Stanford (2-2)

Questions about historical polls can be sent to Jason Bryant

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