PAINESVILLE, Ohio- After participating in five open meets to start the 2016-17 season, the Lake Erie College Storm wrestling team will kick off the duel portion of the schedule this weekend. The Storm will travel to face 8th-ranked University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown on Friday (Jan. 13) and will host Wheeling Jesuit University on Sunday (Jan. 15).
"This weekend will be a great opportunity for the team to compete against great competition," said Lake Erie head coach Kevin Hoogenboom. "Pitt-Johnstown is a storied NCAA D2 program and currently ranked #9. Wheeling Jesuit is coming off of a national duals runner up finish. They are very tough and have depth at each weight class. Both duals will be great challenges. We are only focusing on what is directly in front of us, so traveling to UPJ and competing hard is our first order of business."
Storm Report: The Storm is coming off of an extended holiday break after the team participated in the Midwest Classic in December. Lake Erie finished ninth as a team as four wrestlers placed in the top eight in their respective weight classes.
"We are excited to compete again after a month off. We took a longer than normal break for Christmas and had over two weeks to train and prepare. Our team is healthy and eager to wrestle again," said Hoogenboom about the holiday break.
Team Rankings: Lake Erie enters the duel schedule as the 15th ranked team in the Division II Wrestling Coaches Association Poll. The Storm jumped six spots in the latest version of the rankings released January 4th. The Storm are also ranked 3rd in the Super Region 2 Rankings.
Individual Rankings: The Storm has nine wrestlers ranked in the Super Region 2 Rankings and four wrestlers ranked in the National rankings. 149-pounder Nick Boggs (Concord, Ohio / Riverside) is ranked 2nd in the region and sixth in the national rankings. 165-pounder Nick Vandermeer (Clarkston, Mich. / Clarkston) is first in the region and ninth overall in the country. 184-pounder Tyler Hughes (Brunswick, Ohio / Brunswick) is second in the region and ranked eighth in the national polls. 197-pounder Evan Rosborough (Concord Township, Ohio / Riverside) is slotted fourth in the region and 12th in the latest national ranks.
Series History: The Storm hosted Pitt-Johnstown in a duel last January at home. The Mountain Cats won the duel by a final score of 27-13.
Storm Forecast: Lake Erie will play host to the second ranked Notre Dame College Falcons on January 20th.