#18 Terps Compete at Midlands This Weekend
Dec. 28, 2012
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The 18th-ranked Maryland wrestling team (6-3) closes 2012 this weekend at the 50th Annual Ken Kraft Midlands Championships on the campus of Northwestern University.
Competition will begin Saturday at 9:30 a.m. (CT) at Welsh-Ryan Arena and run through Sunday evening with the final session beginning at 7 p.m. (CT) on Sunday.
More than 30 Division I wrestling teams, along with a number of Division II and III teams and post-graduate competitors, will be in Evanston, Ill., this weekend.
"I am looking forward to our guys competing in the 50th Annual Midlands [Championships]," said head coach Kerry McCoy. "It's such a great event and to be there for the 50th anniversary is going to make it even better. It's going to a very competitive tournament and I expect our guys to do well."
Schedule (All Times CT):
Updates will be posted on the Maryland Wrestling Twitter feed and on the Maryland Wrestling Facebook page, so "Follow" and "Like" to get updates sent straight to you. Be sure to use the #Midlands50 hashtag on Twitter.
Sunday's finals will be broadcasted live on the Big Ten Network at 7 p.m. CT. Check your local listings for availability.
Brackets will be updated throughout the tournament at nusports.com.
Last Time Out
The Terps split a pair of duals at the inaugural Grapple at the Garden against fourth-ranked Ohio State and 17th-ranked Nebraska.
After falling to the Buckeyes, the Terps won the final three matches of the day including a 3-2 overtime decision for Carl Buchholz to defeat the Cornhuskers, 18-17.
The Terps open 2013 at Bloomsburg on Saturday, Jan. 5. The dual is scheduled to start at 5 p.m.
Follow Maryland Wrestling on Twitter
Be sure to use the #Midlands50 hashtag this weekend to follow all of the action in Evanston.
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Scouting The Field
The Midlands Tournament Committee released the Tournament Contenders list for this year's event. Four Terrapins that are expected to compete this weekend made the cut: Geoffrey Alexander (133), Christian Boley (197), Shane Gentry (125) and Jimmy Sheptock (184).
A complete list of this year's contenders is available here.
Rewind: 2011 Midlands Championships
Three Terps earned a spot on the podium at the 2011 Ken Kraft Midlands Championships led by Christian Boley. Boley won four matches on the final day of the tournament to take third place.
As a team, the Terps finished ninth, which tied for the third-best finish all-time for a Terrapin squad. Maryland's best finish came in 2009 when the team placed sixth.
Sheptock Named ACC Wrestler of the Week
Jimmy Sheptock was selected as the Atlantic Coast Conference Wrestler of the Week for the second time this season on Dec. 18.
Sheptock won two matches in the Grapple at the Garden on Sunday, Dec. 16 including a 6-4 sudden victory over then-sixth ranked Josh Ihnen of Nebraska to key a Maryland comeback against the 17th-ranked Huskers. The 18th-ranked Terps won the final three matches of the dual to win 18-17.
It marked the third straight week a Terrapin wrestler earned ACC Wrestler of the Week honors and fourth time this season. Sheptock shared the award for the week of Dec. 4, while Geoffrey Alexanderwon the award for the week of Nov. 6 and Dec. 11.
Alexander is 3-1, while Sheptock is 6-1. Sheptock knocked off seventh-ranked John Ihnen of Nebraska at the Grapple at the Garden.
Top Of The Table
Following the Grapple at the Garden, 184-pound Jimmy Sheptock leads the team or is tied for the team lead in eight dual-meet categories.
Sheptock leads the Terps in: dual points scored (38), technical falls (1), takedowns (29), two-point near falls (5), three-point near falls (3) and bonus points scored (19).
He is tied for the team lead in major decisions (2) and reversals (2).
For Asper, it was his third consecutive title at Brockport with his first two coming at 165 pounds. Boley has won the 197-pound title the past two years.
Hudson Taylor Award
After each home dual meet this season, the Maryland coaching staff will select one wrestler as the recipient of the Hudson Taylor Award. The award is given to the most outstanding Terrapin wrestler in the meet.
Geoffrey Alexander received the award following Terrapin victories over Johns Hopkins and West Virginia to open the season.
Welcome To 174
Josh Asper made his debut at 174 pounds Saturday, Nov. 3 at the NWCA All-Star Classic. The Parkton, Md., native was pitted against two-time All-American Jordan Blanton of Illinois, who began the season ranked No. 2.
Asper made a statement. After three periods could not separate the two wrestlers, Asper scored a takedown in overtime to win 3-1.
With the win, Asper remained undefeated in the annual showcase. He is 3-0 and has appeared in this event more than any other Maryland wrestler in program history.
Schedule The Best
Maryland's 2012-13 schedule features several of the nation's elite. The Terps face 12 teams that were among the top 30 at the NCAA Championships including two top-10 programs in Ohio State and Illinois.
The Terps faced No. 6 Illinois at the Northeast Duals along with No.4 Ohio State and No. 17 Nebraska at the Grapple at the Garden. The Terps have also squared off against No. 13 Pittsburgh.
In addition, Maryland defeated No. 21 Purdue and will take on No. 11 Virginia Tech, No. 20 Virginia, and potentially faces No. 6 Missouri and/or No. 16 Wyoming at the NWCA National Duals.
Movin' On Up
During the offseason, several wrestlers made the move to a higher weight class.
Ben Dorsay, who started for the Terps last season at 149, makes the jump to 157 this season. Dorsay is expected to redshirt this year.
After placing sixth at the NCAA Championships for the second consecutive season in 2012, Josh Asper climbs to 174. Asper has compiled a record of 63-9 over the past two seasons.
At 184, Jimmy Sheptock slides up from 174 where he went 27-6 last season en route to his first ACC Championship.
In The Hunt
The Terps placed seven wrestlers in the finals of last season's ACC Championships. Six of the seven wrestlers return for Maryland including three conference champions.
Head Coach Kerry McCoy
-22 All-Atlantic Coast Conference honorees
Terps on the Web: For up-to-date game stories, statistics, schedules and results, and other Maryland athletic department information, please log-on to www.umterps.com on the Internet.