NDSU Challenges No. 1 Minnesota, Posts 1-2 Record at Bison Quad

FARGO, N.D. – The No. 24-ranked North Dakota State wrestling team posted a 1-2 record in three duals at the Bison Quad on Saturday, Nov. 24. The Bison recorded a 56-0 victory over Itasca Community College before falling to No. 1 Minnesota, 22-12, and Eastern Michigan, 18-17.

NDSU BisonSenior Trent Sprenkle (125) and junior Steven Monk (165) both notched perfect 3-0 records on the day.

NDSU (2-2) tallied seven falls, one technical fall, one decision and one forfeit in the 56-0 shutout of Itasca. Sprenkle, Josh Rodriguez, Hayden Zillmer, Monk, Kurtis Julson, Mac Stoll and Kody Sorenson each pinned their opponents, with five of those falls coming in the first period.

In a battle of ranked teams, North Dakota State raced out to a 6-0 lead – and later a 12-7 lead – against No. 1 Minnesota. Sprenkle, ranked No. 6 in the country at 125 pounds, defeated No. 5 David Thorn of Minnesota by 4-3 decision to open the dual.

Freshman Josh Rodriguez recorded a 3-1 decision over Corey Hodowanic at 133 pounds to give the Bison a 6-0 lead over the Golden Gophers. After a major decision by No. 9 Nick Dardanes over NDSU senior Mark Erickson and a decision by Minnesota’s Seth Lange over Joe Garner at 149 pounds, the Bison found themselves in a 7-6 hole.

NDSU redshirt freshman Hayden Zillmer turned things around at 157 pounds, defeating Brad Dolezal 6-4 in sudden victory to put the Bison up 9-7. Monk, ranked No. 8 in the country at 165 pounds, beat No. 10 Cody Yohn of Minnesota, 1-0, to give the Bison a 12-7 lead with four matches remaining.

Minnesota won three straight major decisions at 174, 184 and 197 pounds to seal the victory, and No. 1 Tony Nelson won by decision over Evan Knutson 5-1 at heavyweight to set the final margin at 22-12.

In the final dual of the day, Eastern Michigan built an early 15-3 lead that the Bison could not quite overcome. Despite major decisions from Monk and Julson at 165 and 174 pounds, respectively, and an overtime victory for Mac Stoll at 184 to pull within one at 15-14, Eastern Michigan was able to hold on for the win with a 3-0 decision by Anthony Abro at 197 pounds.

Knutson rallied for a 10-7 win at heavyweight, but was unable to earn the bonus points needed for the Bison to win the dual.

Bison Quad Results

North Dakota State travels to the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1.