photo courtesy of Mercyhurst athletics
In 19 years as a program and in NCAA Division II, the Mercyhurst Lakers have put 42 wrestlers on the podium at the NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships, with one of those student-athletes taking national championship honors. Josh Shields took the 165 title in 2009, in Head Coach Mike Wehler’s second year at the helm of the Mercyhurst program. Wehler just closed out his 13th season leading the Lakers, who have placed in the top 10 at the NCAA meet five times in his tenure.
“At Mercyhurst, we try to focus on developing well rounded men who are motivated to be successful in all areas of their life,” Wehler said. “We’ve been able to achieve a high level of success both on the mat and in the classroom.”
Six Lakers qualified for the 2020 NCAA Division II National Championships, with four of those wrestlers earning NWCA All-American status. Three of those 2020 All-Americans, along with 2019 All-American and 2020 National Qualifier Alexis Soriano, return to the Laker lineup for 2020-21. Jacob Robb, the three-seed at heavyweight a season ago, highlights the returning lineup that has experience at every weight. Eric Bartos (133) and Luke McGonigal (197) also earned NWCA All-American honors last season and return for Wehler.