No. 24 NDSU Hosts Bison Quad, No. 1 Minnesota Saturday

The No. 24-ranked North Dakota State wrestling team will host a quadrangular meet featuring No. 1 Minnesota, Eastern Michigan and Itasca Community College on Saturday, Nov. 24, in the Bison Sports Arena. The opening duals are scheduled for 1 p.m., with the second and third duals set for approximately 3 and 5 p.m.

Schedule

1 p.m.
North Dakota State vs. Itasca CC
Minnesota vs. Eastern Michigan

3 p.m. (approx.)
North Dakota State vs. Minnesota
Eastern Michigan vs. Itasca CC

5 p.m. (approx.)
North Dakota State vs. Eastern Michigan
Minnesota vs. Itasca CC

In the Polls

NDSU BisonNorth Dakota State is ranked in the Top 25 for the first time in the school’s Division I era. The Bison came in at No. 24 in the USA Today/NWCA/AWN Coaches Poll released on Nov. 20.

Minnesota is the No. 1-rated team in the coaches’ poll for the second straight week.

About Minnesota

Minnesota (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) is ranked No. 1 in the USA Today/NWCA/AWN Coaches Poll and No. 3 in the tournament strength rankings provided by Intermat. The Golden Gophers own dual wins over Hofstra, Nebraska and Boise State this season. Eight of Minnesota’s 10 probable starters for Saturday are ranked among the top 10 in the nation in their respective weight classes.

The Golden Gophers lead the all-time series with the Bison, 15-2. North Dakota State defeated Minnesota in the 1969-70 and 1970-71 seasons under legendary head coach Bucky Maughan.

About Eastern Michigan

Eastern Michigan (0-2, 0-0 MAC) returns three NCAA qualifiers from last season’s team that posted a record of 15-6 and finished third in the Mid-American Conference.

About Itasca

Itasca (1-0, 0-0 MCAC) finished the highest of any Minnesota junior college at last year’s NJCAA national tournament, taking sixth place. The Vikings have 2 returning NJCAA national qualifiers in 157-pounder David Booth and 133-pounder Justin Valhuerdi.

Dandy Debut

NDSU redshirt freshman 157-pounder Hayden Zillmer made his Bison debut on Nov. 16 against No. 24 Boise State, taking on the No. 20-ranked wrestler in the nation in George Ivanov. Zillmer won a thriller, forcing overtime with a takedown in the final seconds and winning 8-7 by riding time advantage in the second tiebreaker period.

Freshmen Update

Two Bison redshirts have each already racked up a dozen wins wrestling unattached in open tournaments this season. Hunter Weber (125) and Matthew Gray (157/165) each own 12-4 records after winning titles at the Finn Grinaker Cobber Open on Nov. 17. Both hail from the state of Wisconsin. Weber is from Marshall, Wis., while Gray is from Twin Lakes, Wis.

Sprenkle Scores No. 80

Senior Trent Sprenkle recorded his 80th career win with his pin of Rami Haddadin of Boise State on Nov. 16. Sprenkle entered this season with 75 career victories. Only seven wrestlers in North Dakota State history have topped 100 career wins.

Tough Road Ahead

No. 24 North Dakota State has four more ranked opponents scheduled for duals this season, including No. 1 Minnesota, No. 7 Missouri, No. 5 Oregon State and No. 19 Wyoming. Two future opponents – Iowa State and Northern Iowa – are receiving votes in the latest Top 25 poll.

Home for the Holidays

NDSU is 6-3 in home duals since the beginning of the 2010-11 season.

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