Mustangs prepare for NCAA Super Regional set for Sunday

After posting a 13-6 overall record and a 3-5 record in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference, the Southwest Minnesota State wrestling team will be back in action at the NCAA Super Regionals that will be held this Sunday, Feb. 24, at 10 a.m. in Waterloo, Iowa. The Mustangs will be one of 13 teams to wrestle in the tournament that will determine qualifiers for the NCAA Championships held in Birmingham, Ala., March 8-9. SMSU finished 12th last year, while qualifying one wrestler (Justin Reinsma, 133) for the NCAA Championships.

NCAA SUPER REGIONAL TOURNAMENT PAGE SMSU NOTES

SUPER REGION THREE
Sunday’s regional tournament is one of four that will take place prior to the NCAA Championships, which will be held March 8-9 in Birmingham, Ala. To advance to the NCAA Championships, a wrestler must finish in the top four of their respective weight class.

LAST YEAR AT THE REGIONALS
Southwest Minnesota accumulated 44 total team points to finish 12th out of 12 region teams last season at the NCAA Super Region Three Tournament hosted by St. Cloud State. Justin Reinsma placed fourth-place at 133 pounds going 2-2 on the day, losing to Andy Pokorny (St. Cloud State) and eventual National Champion, Trevor Franklin  (Upper Iowa). Jacob Begin, who entered the tournament ranked No. 7 at 165 in the NCAA and No. 2 at 165 in the region, took a 13 match winning streak in the tournament but failed to win a bout, going 0-2, dropping consecutive decisions to Matt Morris (Augustana) and Taylor Nagel (U-Mary).

SMSU MustangsMartin Hagen finished in sixth-place at 197 pounds going 1-3 on the day. After a first-round bye, Hagen pinned Steven Cooksley (Newman) in 24 seconds. Hagen was pinned in the semifinals before dropping two straight decisions and landing a sixth-place finish.

Senior Heavyweight, Brian Rodas, picked up a fifth-place finish at the regional tournament. Rodas went 3-2 in the tournament, losing to Jake Kahnke (SCSU) and Zach rosol (Upper Iowa) but defeating Evan Wooding (Indianapolis), Nate Haynes (Minnesota State) and Martin Patron (U-Mary).

LAST WEEK RECAP
The Southwest Minnesota State wrestling team concluded the 2012-13 regular season on a high-note by defeating Minnesota State University Moorhead, 20-15, in the final Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference dual of the year.

The bout started from the 165 pound weight class, with Jacob Begin defeating Kerron Williams by decision. Following Begin’s opening bout victory, the Mustangs reeled off three consecutive bout victories as Kyle Begin (174), Travis Peralta (184) and Micah Larson (197) all contributed to the team point score. MSU Moorhead would mount a comeback to make things interesting as the Dragons claimed the 285, 125, 133 and 157 pound bouts.

Beau Buysse secured SMSU’s 13th dual win of the season when he defeated Casey Williams by major decision to bump SMSU’s team score to 20.

Jacob Begin (165), Kyle Begin (174), Travis Peralta (184), Micah Larson (197), Devin Terry (141) and Beau Buysse  (149) all recorded victories for the Mustangs.

RANKED MUSTANGS
Justin Reinsma (133) and Jacob Begin (165) enter the NCAA Super Regional Tournament as ranked wrestlers in the NCAA, Reinsma holds the No. 8 ranking, while Begin is ranked No. 5.

BEGIN BROTHERS
In their first season wrestling together since high school, Jacob and Kyle Begin carry an identical 14-2 record going into the NCAA Super Regional Tournament. Big brother Jacob, is ranked No. 5 in the NCAA and No. 1 in the Region, while little brother, Kyle, has posted an impressive 14-2 record in his freshman campaign. After flirting with a stint at 157 pounds, head coach Jesse Nelson bumped Kyle up not one, but two weight classes — up from 157 to 174. Begin has responded well, posting nine pins, two major decisions and a technical fall. Kyle enters the postseason ranked No. 7 in the region and will look to qualify for the NCAA Championships in his first season as a Mustang.

CLAIMING THREE
Southwest Minnesota State has claimed three Northern Sun Intercollegiate dual wins for the third consecutive season.  After recording just three wins in his first three seasons as head coach, Jesse Nelson has guided his team to three NSIC victories in as many years.

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