FARGO, N.D. – The North Dakota State wrestling team claimed its first Western Wrestling Conference win of the season with a 25-12 victory over Northern Colorado in front of 353 fans at the Bison Sports Arena Sunday, Jan. 23. The Bison improve to 7-2 overall and 1-1 in the WWC while Northern Colorado falls to 1-7 overall and 1-1 in the WWC.
Senior Kenny Moenkedick gave the Bison an early 6-0 lead at 184 pounds after UNC forfeited the weight class. The Bears won the next two bouts at 197 pounds and heavyweight by decision to tie the team score at 6-6. In the 197 match, Nick Bayer claimed a 12-5 win over junior Drew Ross. Sophomore Will Johnson made his season debut at heavyweight, but fell to UNC’s Eric Brennan, 8-7 after Brennan scored a takedown with 28 seconds remaining.
At 125 pounds, sophomore Trent Sprenkle shut out Sam Bauer, 12-0, for his sixth straight win. Sprenkle tallied three near falls in the major decision victory. UNC responded with a shutout of its own at 133 pounds as Casey Cruz claimed a 5-0 decision over Justin Solberg.
Redshirt freshman Trevor Johnson extended NDSU’s lead to 16-9 at 141 pounds after another UNC forfeit. At 149 pounds, sophomore Mark Erickson took on No. 10 Justin Gaethje. Erickson kept it close with Gaethje through the first two periods with the score tied at 5-5 going into the third. Gaethje clinched the 11-5 win with a takedown and three point near fall as time expired.
The Bison won the final three bouts of the day by decision. At 157 pounds, senior Vince Salminen tallied two takedowns and a two point near fall in an 8-2 decision over Tanner Weiks.
Junior Tyler Johnson’s 9-3 decision over Brandon Kammerzell at 165 pounds clinched the match victory for the Bison. Johnson earned three takedowns and a reversal in the first two periods and only allowed an escape in the final period to cement his win.
In the day’s final bout, sophomore Mac Stoll rejoined the starting lineup at 174 pounds after missing out on last week’s clash with UNI. Stoll wasted no time getting on the board as he tallied a takedown and two point near fall in the first period en route to a 7-1 win.
The Bison now travel west to take on Air Force Friday, Jan. 28 and No. 25 Wyoming on Sunday, Jan. 30 in conference action.
North Dakota State 25, Northern Colorado 12
184: Kenny Moenkedick (NDSU) wins by forfeit
197: Nick Bayer (UNC) dec. Drew Ross (NDSU), 12-5
Hwt: Eric Brennan (UNC) dec. Will Johnson (NDSU), 8-7
125: No. 17 Trent Sprenkle (NDSU) maj. dec. Sam Bauer (UNC), 12-0
133: Casey Cruz (UNC) dec. Justin Solberg (NDSU), 5-0
141: Trevor Johnson (NDSU) win by forfeit
149: No. 10 Justin Gaethje (UNC) dec. Mark Erickson (NDSU), 11-5
157: Vince Salminen (NDSU) dec. Tanner Weiks (UNC), 8-2
165: Tyler Johnson (NDSU) dec. Brandon Kammerzell (UNC), 9-3
174: Mac Stoll (NDSU) dec. Cody McAninch (UNC), 7-1