SJU Wrestling Ranked Seventh, Four Johnnies in Top 10

NWCA Team Rankings | NWCA Individual Rankings

COLLEGEVILLE, Minn. – The Saint John’s University wrestling team dropped one spot to No. 7 in the latest Brute-Adidas National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Division III team rankings released Feb. 8.

In the NCAA Great Lakes Region, Augsburg stayed at No. 3, Concordia-Moorhead moved up one spot to No. 6, North Central (Ill.) fell three spots to No. 22, and Elmhurst (Ill.) moved up one to No. 24.

Four of the Johnnies’ 10 starters remained ranked individually. Senior Matt Baarson (20-3 record; Brooklyn Park, Minn./Champlin Park) stayed at No. 1 in the 165-pound weight class. He has won five of his last six matches since the previous rankings (Jan. 25), with his lone loss to Steven Monk from Division I North Dakota State in the North Country Open championship last Saturday.

Senior Minga Batsukh (19-1 record; Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia/St. Benedict’s Prep, N.J.) moved up one spot to No. 3 at 149 after defeating then-No. 3 Tony Valek from Augsburg two weeks ago. Batsukh’s only loss this season was to No. 2 Blaine Woszczak of Ithaca (N.Y.). Last weekend, Batsukh won his weight class with four technical falls and a major decision. He collected a total of 50 takedowns in his five matches, including a school-record in his 35-19 win in the opening round. The 17 takedowns broke the old record of 15 set by Scot Doboszenski during the 1992-93 season.

Junior Matt Pfarr (19-5 record; Le Sueur, Minn./Le Sueur-Henderson)  stayed at No. 4, while junior Dustin Baxter (18-5 record; Fairbanks, Alaska/West Valley) held steady at No. 7 at 184. Baxter won his first match of the North Country before forfeiting the semifinal to teammateMitch Hagen. He then posted a major decision and won the third-place match via forfeit. Pfarr, meanwhile, won the 174-pound bracket with a 5-0 record and a 13-4 major decision in the championship match.

The Johnnies finish their regular season at the Wisconsin-Eau Claire Invitational this Saturday, Feb. 12. Teams scheduled to attend include No. 3 Augsburg, Jamestown (N.D.), Luther (Iowa), No. 22 North Central (Ill.), No. 3 St. Cloud State (Division II), Wisconsin-Eau Claire, No. 2 Wisconsin-La Crosse, Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Wisconsin-Parkside, No. 18 Wisconsin-Stevens Point (No. 18), No. 17 Wisconsin-Whitewater, No. 1 Wartburg (Iowa) and Winona State.

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