New wrestling overtime rules trying to eliminate coin flip from equation
Overtime in high school wrestling has taken on a new look this season, one that attempts to take random chance out of the equation. If two wrestlers were tied at the end of three 2-minute periods and a one-minute overtime, there would be a coin f...
Overtime in high school wrestling has taken on a new look this season, one that attempts to take random chance out of the equation.
If two wrestlers were tied at the end of three 2-minute periods and a one-minute overtime, there would be a coin flip and one wrestler would be in the top position, the other on the bottom. If the wrestler on the top didn't let his opponent escape, he was awarded the match.
This year, as stated in the National Federation of High Schools rules changes for 2006-07, "The Overtime shall consist of a one-minute Sudden Victory period; if no scoring occurs, two 30-second tiebreakers shall be utilized; and if the score remains tied, a 30-second Ultimate Tiebreaker will be utilized."
What the new rule tries to eliminate is random chance. Both wrestlers get 30-second periods to score an escape or ride an opponent, kind of like college football's overtime, where each team gets a chance to score. If the match still remains tied, then the riding rule can come into play.
"I think it's an attempt to let the wrestlers decide it," said Benson head coach Steve Ricard. "They're trying to not let the match be determined on the flip of a coin."
A recent match between A.J. Frederiksen of Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City and Tony Klosterboer of Montevideo, both state tournament entrants last season, tested the new overtime rule.
The two went the first one-minute Sudden Victory period without scoring. In the first 30-second tiebreaker, Klosterboer escaped for a one-point lead. In the second tiebreaker, Frederiksen scored a reversal in the last 10 seconds to win the match. Had he scored just an escape, the match would have went to the 30-second Ultimate Tiebreaker.
"You've got to give it a year to see (how well it will be received)," said Ricard. "Wrestling is a sport of endurance. It's giving the best conditioned wrestler a chance to win. I'm not opposed to that."
Another rule change that's sure to affect teams this season is the increase in the heavyweight standard from a maximum of 275 to 285. According to Ricard, the last time the heavyweight limit was changed was back in the mid 1980s, when it went from no limit to 275.
"I'm guessing that was done on national surveys," Ricard said of the weight rule. "I think it's a way to get the big, big kids in there."
Growth spurt: WCC expands to east
The West Central Conference continues to grow, prompted by the high school league.
The Minnesota State High School League has officially notified Milaca and Mora that they have been assigned to the WCC starting fall of 2008.
Foley joins the present 15-team alignment, divided into a North and South Division, in 2007.
With 18 teams spread from Mora to Montevideo, three divisions have been discussed.
Both Mora and Milaca had petitioned the high school league for placement after no conference proved willing to accept them. The letter from Dave Stead, executive director of the MSHSL, explained that the hearing committee assigned the schools based on ernollment, geography and comparable programs.
Both Mora and Milaca formerly belong to the Rum River Conference, a league expected to fold after this season.
Current members of the West Central South are Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City, Benson, BOLD (Olivia), Lac qui Parle Valley (Madison), Morris, Montevideo and Yellow Medicine East (Granite Falls).
The North division is comprised of Albany, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, Melrose, Minnewaska Area (Glenwood), New London-Spicer, Paynesville, Sauk Centre and St. Cloud Cathedral.
Camden counting both divisions
Unlike most high school conference with two divisions, the Camden Conference is counting games in both halves, while still maintaining two division races.
In boys and girls basketball, the North Division consists of Central Minnesota Christian, Dawson-Boyd, Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg, Lakeview, MACCRAY and Renville County West.
The South Division is made up of Canby, Lincoln HI, Minneota, Russell-Tyler-Ruthton and Tracy-Milroy-Balaton.
Each team plays division opponents twice and the team in the other division once.
In wrestling, the Camden Conference has just one division with Canby, Dawson-Boyd, KMS, MACRAY, Minneota, RCW, TMB and Ortonville.
- Scott Thoma