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IHSA changes state tournament

Posted Wednesday, September 14, 2011 by Steve Amy

IHSA changes state tournament

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

 

By Kevin Chlum
sports@newstrib.com

In June, the IHSA announced it was making major changes to its classification system.

Those changes included altering the percentage of schools in each class for each sport.

In wrestling, the IHSA put 33 percent of schools in each of the three classes where in the past 40 percent of wrestling schools were in Class 3A with 30 percent in each of the smaller classes.

That decision has led to further changes for wrestling.

The IHSA announced Tuesday that it approved changes to the state wrestling tournament.


In Class 1A and Class 2A, the number of state qualifiers has moved from 12 to 16 and the format has changed to include additional wrestleback matches. The Class 1A and Class 2A state tournaments now match the Class 3A tournament.

The IHSA also announced that the state wrestling tournament has been expanded to three days for all classes.

“I think it’s great,” L-P coach Matt Fletcher said. “I know they moved the cutoff of classes to make it more equal between 1A, 2A and 3A. I think it’s only fair they went ahead and allocated four more spots for qualifiers (in Class 1A and Class 2A) and expanded the tournament. I think it’s good for the sport in general.”

Princeton coach Steve Amy likes that all three classes will have the same format, and he feels the changes will improve the state tournament.

“I think it’s great,” Amy said. “There’s more kids down there involved and you get more spectators. It’s great for the sport.”

To get the additional four state qualifiers in Class 1A and Class 2A, the fourth-place finisher in each class at each of the four sectionals now advances. In the past, only the top three sectional finishers qualified for state.

At state, the new format will feature consolation wrestlebacks beginning after the quarterfinal rounds.

In the past, if a wrestler lost in the first round, he only got into the wrestlebacks if his opponent reached the semifinals. He now gets back in if his opponent reaches the quarterfinals.

“It’s nice because you don’t have to wait for your guy to get to the semis anymore,” Fletcher said. “As long as your guy makes it out to the quarterfinals, you get to wrestle back. I think every year there’s that upset in the first round where a returning state place winner is knocked out of the tournament, and it’s going to curb that a little bit and allow kids to actually wrestle it out to see who the top six in each weight class are.”

The format change also increases the number of medalists from four to six.

The changes take affect for the 2012 state tournament, which will be held Feb. 16-18 at Assembly Hall on the campus of the University of Illinois in Champaign.

Kevin Chlum can be reached at 223-3200, ext. 139, or at sports@newstrib.com

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