Mustangs set for two conference duals

MARSHALL, Minn. – The Southwest Minnesota State University wrestling team returns Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference action on Friday, Jan. 27, hosting Northern State University (2-3, 0-2 NSIC). SMSU (6-3, 0-1 NSIC) will then travel to Canby, Minn. to take on the No. 1-ranked team in the country, St. Cloud State University (16-0, 3-0 NSIC), at Canby High School.

About the Mustangs: Southwest Minnesota State is coming off a 28-9 loss at No. 3 Upper Iowa University last Sunday. Upper Iowa grabbed an early 6-0 lead when the Mustangs forfeited the 125-pound weight class. SMSU’s highlights of the match were Jacob Begin improving to 15-4 on the season with a 9-7 decision over Blake Sorensen and Andrew Rodas earning a 10-3 decision over Mitch Schultz, who is currently ranked fourth in the nation. Ethan Hildebrandt improved to 12-6 on the season with a 12-6 decision over Blake Hilmer at 141 pounds.

About the Wolves: Northern State University enters the dual with a record of 2-3 on the season, including 0-2 in the NSIC. Northern State’s last victory came on Dec. 3 in a 19-18 dual victory over Chadron State. The Wolves opened NSIC action last weekend, taking on No. 1 St. Cloud State and No. 3 Upper Iowa at home. NSU lost 23-19 against the Huskies and 41-4 against Upper Iowa. Matt Meuleners enters the dual as the No. 2 ranked heavyweight in the nation with a record of 18-2 on the season.

About the Huskies: St. Cloud State University enters the dual with a record of 16-0 on the season, 3-0 in conference duals. The Huskies are coming off a 37-9 dual victory over MSU Moorhead last Sunday. SCSU has five wrestlers ranked in the top eight in the nation in their respective weight classes. Jacob Kahnke (285), and Tad Merritt (165) are both ranked first in the country in their weight classes. Jacob D. Horn is ranked fifth at 157 pounds, Shamus O’Grady is ranked third at 174 pounds and Derek Skala is ranked third at 184 pounds.

The series: Southwest Minnesota State and Northern State will match-up for the 33rd time in a series that began during the 1979-80 season. The Mustangs are 21-9-2 all-time against the Wolves. SMSU earned a 23-15 victory over the Northern State last season in Aberdeen, S.D.

SMSU and St. Cloud State will meet on the mat for the 40th time in school history on Saturday. The Mustangs and the Huskies first matched up during the 1969-70 season. SCSU leads the all-time series 26-13-1 and has won five straight duals over the Mustangs. The Huskies earned a 32-8 victory over SMSU last season in Marshall.

In the ranks: Southwest Minnesota State came in ranked 10th in the latest edition of the Super Region 3 Rankings and sixth in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference rankings.

Super Region 3 Rankings

156St. Cloud State
342Upper Iowa
423Wisconsin Parkside
614Minnesota State
89University of Mary
97MSU Moorhead
97Northern State
106Southwest Minnesota State

NSIC Rankings

167St. Cloud State
349Upper Iowa
422Minnesota State
515University of Mary
613Southwest Minnesota State
79Northern State
87MSU Moorhead

SMSU Individuals in Regional Rankings

12510Travis Borchert
1336Justin Reinsma
1416Ethan Hildebrandt
1497Codie Lane
15712Josh Anderson
1653Jacob Begin
1747Trent Molacek
18410Micah Larson
1977Martin Hagen
2854Brian Rodas

SMSU Individuals in NSIC Rankings

1257Travis Borchert
1335Justin Reinsma
1415Ethan Hildebrandt
1495Codie Lane
1578Josh Anderson
1652Jacob Begin
1746Trent Molacek
1846Micah Larson
1975Martin Hagen
2854Brian Rodas

Probable lineups:

125 – Travis Borchert (8-6)
133 – Justin Reinsma (12-10)
141 – Ethan Hildebrandt (12-6)
149 – Codie Lane (7-9)
157 – Josh Anderson (2-10)
165 – Jacob Begin (15-4)
174 – Trent Molacek (5-8)
184 – Andrew Rodas (8-7) or Micah Larson (6-7)
197 – Martin Hagen (12-6)
285 – Cole Wilson (16-1)

125 – Anthony Bruno (15-12)
133 – Ian Muirhead (11-10)
141 -Terrence Fox (1-10) or Benton Crow (2-4)
149 – Beau Voegeli (5-9) or Gavin Larsen (9-8)
157 – Neil Sell (8-11)
165 – Blake Lundgren (11-7)
174 – Donnie Bowden (11-6)
184 – Chad Gibson (5-4)
197 – Baker Haar (3-11)
285 – Matt Meuleners (18-2)

125 – Eric Forde (7-2) or Dylan Wright (12-9)
133 – Andy Pokorny (13-4) or Zach Stewart (18-8)
141 – Jay Hildreth (17-10) or Matt Leibforth (16-11)
149 – Josh Howk (20-11)
157 – Jacob R. Horn (14-12)
165 – Tad Meritt (25-2)
174 – Shamus O’Grady (5-0) or Kurt Salmen (16-10) or Jack Barnes (18-9)
184 – Derek Skala (18-2)
197 – Lucas Munkelwitz (21-4) or Mic Berg (13-7) or Chris Brassell (13-4)
285 – Jacob Kahnke (24-1)

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