The York College wrestling team will welcome 13 teams to the M&T Bank Field House on Saturday for the annual New Standard Corporation Invitational in York.
This year's tournament features four ranked teams and 13 nationally ranked wrestlers. Ithaca is the top-ranked team at the tournament. The Bombers are eighth in the most recent National Wrestling Coaches Association Adidas Brute Coaches Poll. The host Spartans are ranked 20th, while The College of New Jersey checks in at No. 21 and Johnson & Wales is No. 30.
Ithaca is the defending champion. The Bombers outdistanced second-place Brockport State by 19.5 points a year ago. York and College of New Jersey finished tied for third with 85.5 points, while Johnson & Wales rounded out the top five with 71 points. Ithaca has won the tournament three times.
The lower weights are loaded with highly-ranked wrestlers. Johns Hopkins' Paul Bewak is ranked first in the nation at 125 pounds, while Ithaca's Ricardo Gomez is fifth. The 133-pound weight class features a trio of ranked competitors as TCNJ's Dan Herr is third, Ithaca's Alex Gomez is fourth and United States Coast Guard Academy's (USCGA) Nate Giorgio is seventh. Giorgio was the 125-pound champion at last year's tournament.
The 149-pound bracket has Delaware Valley's Emmanuel Ajagbe, who is ranked third, while York's Vinny Pisani is seventh. Pisani is 8-1 and has won seven straight decisions after suffering his only loss of the year in his second match of 2012-13.
At 157-pounds, Ithaca's Derek Brennon is ranked third, while TCNJ's John Darling is the fourth-ranked wrestler at 165-pounds. Ithaca's Jules Doliscar is second at 174 pounds. TCNJ's Brian Broderick is third at 184 pounds.
The heavyweight division features two young stars. York freshman Mike Spencer is eighth and Elizabethtown sophomore Jeremy Reith is 10th.
The 141-pound class and the 197-pound class are the only two weight classes that don't feature a nationally ranked wrestler in the tournament.
Spartan head coach Tom Kessler believes this is one of the best tournaments on the East Coast.
"We have consistently had one of the biggest and toughest fields for an in-season tournament in the country," he said. "I don't think people in this area realize how lucky they are to have such a nationally recognized tournament in their own back yard. We are excited to have another great field for the tournament."
In addition to Giorgio, other returning champions from last year's tournament include Elizabethtown's Colin Sheridan (149 pounds), Darling (157 pounds) and Doliscar (174 pounds).
The New Standard Corporation took over as the title sponsor for the former Spartan Invitational three years ago. This year's tournament will be the fourth New Standard Corporation Invitational in the M&T Bank Field House.
The action kicks off at 9:30 a.m., with semifinals and third-round consolations set for 3:30 p.m. The finals are tentatively slated for a 7:30 p.m. start.