Following completion of the winter sports season, IUP continues to pace all competitors in an effort to claim the 2012-13 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Dixon Trophy.
The trophy is awarded at the end of each academic year to the league’s most successful program based on conference playoff and/or regular-season finish.
For 2012-13, the league has adopted a new scoring format to calculate the Dixon Trophy standings. In previous years only an institution’s top 12 finishes — six men’s and six women’s — were used to calculate a point total. Beginning this season the standings are based on an average score for every PSAC championship sport that an institution sponsors. The point values for each sport will remain the same: 16 points to each conference champion and descending point values for respective placement. The second- through last-place values vary depending on the number of teams that sponsor the sport.
IUP, which also led after the fall season, has accumulated an average score of 11.19 and is one of five schools sporting an average over the 10-point mark. Edinboro (fourth to second), West Chester (sixth to third) and Slippery Rock (fifth to fourth) made leaps toward the top spot during the winter. Edinboro (11.18) trails by just 0.01, followed by West Chester (10.67) and Slippery Rock (10.50). Shippensburg, which has won a league-best seven Dixon Trophy titles, dropped from second to fifth but remains within striking distance with a 10.25 average.
The Crimson Hawks’ lead was bolstered primarily behind a league championship in men’s basketball, marking the third of the year for the school (football, men’s golf). IUP also had strong showings with a fourth place in women’s swimming and an advancement to the quarterfinals in women’s basketball.
Over the winter, Edinboro added a PSAC crown in wrestling and was runner-up in women’s indoor track and field. The Fighting Scots also registered double-digit numbers with a semifinal appearance in women’s basketball and a fifth in women’s swimming.
West Chester’s three-spot jump was the best among league schools. The Golden Rams won PSAC titles in men’s and women’s swimming and advanced to the final four in men’s basketball. Slippery Rock was the league runner-up in men’s basketball and finished third and fourth, respectively, in men’s and women’s indoor track and field.
IUP, Edinboro and West Chester are on a quest for their first Dixon Trophy, while Slippery Rock earned a lone title after the 2007-08 year. The Crimson Hawks sponsor six of the league’s seven championship sports in the spring. They will need strong showings in men’s and women’s outdoor track and field, baseball, softball, women’s tennis and lacrosse in order to claim a wire-to-wire lead at the top of the standings. Men’s tennis is the other PSAC championship to be contested in the spring.