Notes from the weekend

An interesting question for area wrestling fans is this: If Canon-McMillan, with its five champions and six qualifiers to the state tournament, happens to win the team tournament title in Hershey this weekend, which team is the true team champion? Canon-Mac or Central Dauphin, which captured the first team title in last month's tournament.
Just askin'.

Possibly, the best thing that happened to Cody Wiercioch's chances of repeating as a PIAA champion was his overtime loss to Burrell's Travis McKillop in the 160-pound finals in Johnstown. Wiercioch, a sophomore from Charleroi, will be furious about the loss just as McKillop was when he fell to Wiercioch in the WPIAL finals. That motivation is more than anything the coaching staff at Charleroi could think up to prepare Wiercioch this week had he beaten McKillop Saturday in Johnstown.
I think McKillop put it best when he said if the two wrestlers were on the same team, one at 152 and the other at 160, they would both be state champions.

I always appreciate a wrestler who has the maturity and composure to rally from a bad start to a tournament. This week's award goes to Zach Swarrow of Beth-Center, who was upended in the first round of the regional tournament in Johnstown and won five straight bouts to finish third at 103. That's impressive.

There is absolutely no rational reason why the Southwest should not have at least one more qualifier to the state tournament in Class AAA. The number of qualifiers are determined on the percentage of schools. Because the City League left and a couple more schools dropped, Class AAA lost a fourth qualifier. Check out the number of fourth-place finishers in Class AAA on this blog and imagine how many would medal at states. I don't see one who wouldn't.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"There is absolutely no rational reason why the Southwest should not have at least one more qualifier to the state tournament in Class AAA."

How about the fact that the PIAA uses a ratio formula based on the number of schools in regions? That's pretty rational.

How about arrogance? The WPIAL wrestling gurus wanted/thought everything could/would stay as it always was. Then, when the City League was added, the leaders wanted to have their own tournament, then didn't want to have to do it all again with the City League kids. So, they threw a fit, the City League left and the PIAA said, "Fine. Now, based on the ratio, you get 3 state qualifiers."

It really doesn't matter how many 4th-place finishers would medal. And, without the actual matches, your supposition is based, in part, on the very arrogance that put the WPIAL in this situation to begin with.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 10:29:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the city league coming back next year? I was told they were joining the WPIAL and becoming part of the district.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 4:41:00 PM  
Anonymous J.Dami said...

I wrestled in that era when we had to do the WPIALS one weekend then the Southwest region another. I`m pretty sure the city league won literally 1 match in 3 or 4 years. At the time you basically had to do the same tournament twice.wpial foes beating the heck outta each other for two straight weeks didn`t really appeal to anyone of us. And anyone that wrestled at this one over the weekend especially the third place bouts that we`re some of the most thrilling matches anywhere anytime (Would you wanta have to do that match twice)Your parents would have heartattacks. If they bring the city league back take the fifth section qualifier out(4 is enough already),Give them 2 qualifiers and see if they can prove they belong on our WPIAL mats.Its a double edged sword Anonymous Typer.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 7:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The true team champion should be the team that wins head to head, not the one with the most individual champions, place winners etc.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 8:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Brian Krenzelak said...

College National Champions are determined at the NCAA's not national duals...Just Sayin'.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 9:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can't even choose which...you covered the CM chase for the Dual Meet title and you'll cover their run at the team points title at the individual tournament. Want your cake and eat it too...

Sunday, March 06, 2011 9:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

J.Dami, you are correct, historically. There were two alternatives to the dilemma--meet on consecutive weekends, or go from the AAA sections to the SW Regional (that's what the arrogants call it now anyway). It is, in fact, the WPIAL Tournament, not the SW regional--regionals include more than one district. More arrogance.

Sunday, March 06, 2011 9:50:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Tuscano said...

To Anon, if you believe that the ratio formula, which is simply based on the number of participating schools, is a fair way to determine qualifiers for the state tournament, well, that seems not only overly simplistic but irrational.

But that is the PIAA way.

Monday, March 07, 2011 10:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, Joe, you'd be okay with a bunch of folks sitting around in a room determining how many qualifiers each District/Region should get based simply on a Jethro Gibbs-type "gut" feeling on who would win how many medals?

If so, you also have to be willing for other bunches of folks sitting around determining, by their gut, how many football, soccer, basketball, volleyball, baeball, softball, track/field, golf and every other sport qualifiers from each District/region there should be.

Distributing PIAA qualifiers based on the number of schools by region is not only rational, it is equitable, fair, reasonable and, yes, simple.

Your, now, repeated desire to use some innocuous "gut" instinct to determine qualification to the PIAA Tournament is the irrational position advanced in this forum.

Monday, March 07, 2011 11:01:00 AM  
Blogger Joe Tuscano said...

No, not sitting around going by their gut, but actually doing the job a wrestling steering committee is supposed to do: give the most talented wrestlers a good chance to make the state tournament

Start this way: give each region two qualifiers and base the others on the past performances of the region. You can adjust it every two or three years.

The WPIAL seeds its team tournament and they do a pretty good job. Why? Because they are wrestling people who know the sport and the strong teams. That's the least we can ask of the PIAA's steering committee.

The PIAA would never do what I propose because they would not want to deal with admitting some areas are stronger in wrestling than others.

If the PIAA system was used to determine the NCAA basketball playoff teams, the Big East would get five, maybe six teams, into the tournament based on that percentage system. It gets more because the selection committee does some work determining the strength of the conferences.

If you use the PIAA percentage system, you would have a basketball tournament that was equally distributed throughout the membership.

But it would not be fair.

Monday, March 07, 2011 7:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The NCAA actually uses percentages all the time in football, basketball, baseball, softball, hockey, volleyball, soccer, lacross, etc. Conference champions get berths. Independents get berths based on the ratio of independents as compared to the total body. Remaining teams then are eligible for the remaining spots.

You will never see what you propose because it is not rational. The PIAA divides the berths proportionally by the ratio of teams. There is NO other reasonable, rational, defensible way for PIAA to allocate berths.

Monday, March 07, 2011 9:09:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Tuscano said...

In basketball, the NCAA uses percentages but doesn't restrict qualifiers to be from certain areas.

Anyway, the key word is defensible. I understand the PIAA needs to use this system because it would end up in court if it didn't.

And I am not advocating the system be slanted toward helping SW wrestlers. In fact, if I had that type of control, I would not allow 7 qualifiers from the WPIAL to the region in Class AA. It ruins that tournament because it saps the drama. You can tell by the dwindling crowds over the years.

Success over a long period of time should be factored into the equation. In wrestling, and many other sports, it isn't even in the thought process of the PIAA. I will never be asked to serve on one of their committees.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011 8:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The PIAA thought process is, correctly, based on access, just like the NCAA's thought process is based on access. Is there equitable access to the championship events?

There have been times when 4 of the top 6 wrestlers (believed to be) in a particular weight were in one district. But only 2, or 3, got to advance to the state tournament. That's the way it goes.

Here's the only other defensible position for PIAA: They award medals to the top 8 placefinishers. Take the top 8 out of sections, the top 8 out of WPIAL, the top 8 out of each region to the PIAA tournament. That way, the argument would be about what some particular district's 9th place finisher WOULD do at Hershey....

How's that work for you? No less outrageous than your proposal to have it "seeded" by a bunch of old men in a smoke-filled, dimly-lit back room. That's really what you're lobbying for, whether you want to describe it that way or not.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011 1:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about taking the district champions only? That would solve all of the problems. Can't win your district, you don't deserve to go - period.
But that would make too much sense and wouldn't generate enough - no, not interest - revenue.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011 10:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon at 10:54 pm--Amen, brother. Love it when the word is preached straight and true. Win your section and advance. Win you district and advance. Won't need "regionals" then. Win state and bring home a medal. Okay, give 'em to 2-3-4 as well. But that's it.

Your congregation won't have many in it, but it would be on the straight and narrow path. PTL.

Thursday, March 10, 2011 6:52:00 AM  

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