Seven Chippewas head to New York for NCAA Championships

Seven members of the Central Michigan wrestling team will begin their quest for an NCAA Championship on St. Patrick's Day at New York's Madison Square Garden. 

The three-day long tournament will conclude on Saturday with a National Champion being crowned in each of the 10 weight classes and 80 wrestlers total earning All-American honors. 

The 10 weight classes are split up into brackets made up of 33 wrestlers. The top 16 in each bracket are seeded. CMU's three seeded wrestlers are freshman Justin Oliver (149 pound-class) is a nine seed, senior Luke Smith (157) is an 11 seed and senior Mike Ottinger (174) is a 10 seed. 

The other four Chippewas competing are sophomore Brent Fleetwood (125), junior Corey Keener (133), senior Zach Horan (141) and sophomore Jordan Ellingwood (184). Ellingwood was the only Chippewa to win his weight class at the MAC Championships on March 6.

This is the first year the NCAA Championships will be at Madison Square Garden. Head Coach Tom Borrelli said the location adds to the history and tradition. 

"The Championships are the biggest part of our sport and competing at Madison Square Garden only intensifies that," Borrelli said. "There have been so many great events there and we can't wait for the challenge."

Coverage for Thursday and Friday's matches can be found on ESPNU and ESPN3. Saturdays' championship matches will be at 8 p.m. on ESPN.