#8 Wrestling Looks for Best-Ever Finish at 107th EIWA Championships

2010 American University Wrestling
2010 American University Wrestling

Tournament Notes / Brackets

The No. 8 American University wrestling team is set to compete in the 107th EIWA Championships this Saturday and Sunday, March 5-6 at Sojka Pavilion in Lewisburg, Pa. The tournament will begin at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday and will conclude with the championship round at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday. Expectations are high for the Eagles at this year's tournament projected to finish in fourth place.

Team Rankings (Projected Team Points at EIWA Championships)
1. Cornell (121)
2. Lehigh (111)
3. Rutgers (79)
4. American (70)

5. Penn (66)
6. Navy (53)
7. Columbia (29)
8. Bucknell (25)

American Lineup
#7 Nick Arujau, Fr., 23-7
#10 Kevin Tao, So., 17-13
#3 Matt Mariacher, RS Jr., 27-7
#3 Ganbayar Sanjaa, Jr., 20-4
#1 Steve Fittery, Sr., 24-0
#6 Patrick Graham, RS So., 19-15
Tanner Shaffer, RS So., 10-14
Thomas Barreiro, RS So., 9-23
#3 Daniel Mitchell, So., 25-6
#2 Ryan Flores, Jr., 18-5
* Rankings are the EIWA pre-seeds and subject to change.

How to Watch
The 2011 EIWA Championships will be broadcast live via streaming video on BucknellBison.com free of charge, except for the championship matches which will require a subscription. Coverage of the tournament will begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday and will run throughout the duration of the competition. Live results will also be available through Bucknell's website by clicking here. Fans can also check AUeagles.com throughout the tournament for match-by-match updates or follow @AU_Wrestling on Twitter to receive live updates sent to your phone.

What to Watch For
American is currently projected to finish fourth at the tournament, which would give the Eagles their highest finish ever at the EIWAs. The team's previous best finish is fifth overall, which American accomplished last year. Senior Steve Fittery finished third in last year's event at 157 lbs. and is projected to take first this year. Fittery has been the No. 1 ranked wrestler in the country for 14-consecutive weeks and has a 24-0 record this season, with 12 falls. Junior Ryan Flores comes into the tournament as one of the favorites at heavyweight. He has an 18-5 overall record and has recorded victories over seven ranked opponents this season, including five ranked in the top-five. Ranked No. 8 in the country at 149 lbs., Ganbayar Sanjaa enters the tournament with an overall record of 20-4 and a 5-1 record against EIWA opponents. Junior Matt Mariacher will look to make a run for his first EIWA crown at 141 lbs. after finishing sixth in 2009. Mariacher enters the weekend with a 27-7 record and ranks first on the team in wins and major decisions with eight. Sophomore Daniel Mitchell also returns to the EIWAs after his fourth place finish last year at 197 lbs. Mitchell is 25-6 this season and has a 6-1 record against EIWA opponents.

NCAA Qualifying
The EIWA Championships will serve as American's qualifying tournament into the NCAA Championships. This year, a total of 45 automatic qualifiers have been allocated to the EIWA, which is the second most among all conferences behind only the Big Ten. Each weight class has been assigned a specific number of automatic qualifiers based upon each individual's Div. I winning percentage, RPI and the NCAA Coaches Panel Rankings. 48 at-large qualifiers will be chosen after all qualifying tournaments have been completed and will be announced on March 9. The NCAA Division I Wrestling Committee will meet in person to determine the 48 at-large qualifiers.

Automatic Bids by Weight Class
125 lbs. – 5
133 lbs. – 3
141 lbs. – 5
149 lbs. – 5
157 lbs. – 5
165 lbs. – 4
174 lbs. – 5
184 lbs. – 4
197 lbs. – 5
HWT – 4

Schedule of Events
The 2011 EIWA Championships will take place in four sessions. Session start times are as follows:
Sessions 1 and 2 - Saturday, March 5, 10:00 a.m. (Semifinals at approximately 3:30 p.m.)
Session 3 - Sunday, March 6, 10:00 a.m. (Consolation semis, place finals)
Session 4 - Sunday, March 6, 3:00 p.m. (Championship finals)