FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – More than 2,700 wrestlers from across the country are competing at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum this weekend. The Mat Mayhem tournament is back in Northeast Indiana, drawing only the best wrestlers to defend their title.
The wrestlers will compete in multiple age categories through NCAA level, including the top 85 college teams in NCAA II, III, NAIA, NJCAA and women’s division.
“So, they’re each competing for a national dual meet championship within their respective division. It’s about 1,100 of our top college wrestlers from around the country,” Mike Moyer, Executive Director of the National Wrestling Coaches Association said, “One of the fastest growing high school sports in America is women’s wrestling and we have a women’s division here. We have 13 intercollegiate women’s teams competing.”
According to the event’s website, Mat Mayhem was created two years ago after the Great Lakes Championships in the same location. It was a tournament featuring only eight mats in a massive expo center. Quickly after getting the VIP tour of the Coliseum, officials decided it was a great place to draw the best wrestlers in the country.Now, the event features 34 mats. Organizers plan to return for more tournaments in the future.
“It starts with a great host city. Fort Wayne does it as good as anybody in America. They know how to put on a great event. We also have a lot of fantastic sponsors,” Moyer said, “We really encourage everybody for the whole region to come out and support these great athletes. It’s a great opportunity to really recognize our heroes and champions in our sport.”
The tournament runs through Sunday, Jan. 10. The official bracket’s can be found by clicking the link.