#1 SCSU Wrestling Headed to NCAA Finals on March 8-9

The number one ranked St. Cloud State University wrestling team (21-0, 8-0 NSIC) will be headed to the 2013 NCAA Division II championships on March 8-9. This year’s finals will take place at the CrossPlex in Birmingham, Ala. as part of the 2013 NCAA Division II Winter Championships Festival.

The Huskies will be bringing nine athletes to the championships this year and are fresh from a first place finish at the 2013 NCAA Division II Super 3 Regional tournament on Feb. 24 in Waterloo, Iowa. This marks the third consecutive season that SCSU has claimed the NCAA Division II Super 3 Regional title.

SCSU also claimed its second consecutive NSIC championship in 2012-13 with a perfect 8-0 record in league dual match competition.

SCSU Huskies

NCAA Qualifiers:

125 Pounds: Sophomore Eric Forde will be making his first trip to the NCAA finals in 2013. Forde is 25-7 this season and recently placed second at the NCAA regional. He is currently ranked #2 in the nation at 125-pounds in the latest DII polls. Of note, Forde also placed second at the Finn Grinaker Open on Nov. 17. His career record at SCSU is 37-14 heading into NCAA competiton.

133 Pounds: Redshirt senior Andy Pokorny will be making his second consecutive appearance at the NCAA DII finals for the Huskies. Pokorny gained All-America notice in 2012 with a second place finish at the NCAA championships in Pueblo, Colo. Pokorny is 21-2 this season for the Huskies and claimed the top spot at the NCAA Super Region 3 in the 133-pound bracket. A transfer from UN-Lincoln and UN-Omaha, Pokorny’s two-year record with the Huskies stands at 43-9. Pokorny is ranked #2 in the nation in the latest DII polls.

141 Pounds: SCSU redshirt freshman Matt Nelson will be making his first trip to the NCAA nationals in 2013. He earned his NCAA bid with a third place finish in the Regional’s 141-pound bracket. He is 19-7 for the Huskies in 2012-13.

149 Pounds: A four-year standout for the Huskies, Jacob D. Horn will be making his third consecutive trip to the NCAA finals for the Huskies in 2013. He gained All-America notice in 2011 with a fifth place finish at 149-pounds and was an NCAA qualifier in 2012. Horn is 15-7 in 2012-13 and finished second in the 149-pound bracket at this year’s NCAA regional. He is 76-32 during his career as a Husky. Horn is ranked #5 in the nation in the latest DII poll.

157 Pounds: SCSU redshirt freshman Clint Poster will also be making his first trip to the NCAA finals in 2013. This year’s champion in the 157-pound bracket at 157-pounds, Poster ranks second on the Husky roster with 32 wins (32-3). He leads the Huskies with 11 pins this winter and also won titles in Open competition at Iowa State and St. Cloud State this year. Poster is now ranked number two in the nation in the latest DII poll.

165 Pounds: Freshman Gabe Fogarty gained his trip to Alabama with a third place finish at this year’s NCAA Super 3 regional in action at 165-pounds. He is 24-10 this year with five falls to his credit.

174 Pounds: Another one of SCSU’s seniors, Kurt Salmen will complete his Husky career with a stop at the NCAA finals. Salmen is 16-9 for the Huskies this winter and gained his bid with a third place finish at 174-pounds at the NCAA regional. His career mark at SCSU is 45-23.

184 Pounds: #1 ranked redshirt senior Shamus O’Grady is returing to the nationals for the fourth consecutive season. He placed fourth at 174-pounds in 2012 and 2011 and was sixth in 2010. A three-time All-American, O’Grady earned Regional MVP honors in 2011 and 2013 and most recently won the Regional crown at 184-pounds in 2013. The nation’s #1 ranked 184-pounder this season, O’Grady paces the Huskies this year with 36 wins (36-1) and his only loss was in the finals of the Finn Grinaker Open on Nov. 17 against an opponent from Minnesota. He has 10 falls this year and has won Open titles at Iowa State and St Cloud State. He also gained the Outstanding Wrestler Award at this year’s Husky Open and the Regional. In his career, O’Grady owns an 104-28 career record.

285 Pounds: Thanks to his recent championship finish at the 2013 NCAA DII Super 3 regional, redshirt senior Jacob Kahnke will come into the NCAA finals as the nation’s top ranked Division II wrestler at 285. Kahnke’s record is unblemished this season at 18-0, which also includes seven falls this winter. A four-time NCAA qualifier, Kahnke has gained three All-America awards during his career and has finished as the DII runner-up at 285-pounds in 2011 and 2012. He also placed fourth for the Huskies at 285-pounds in 2010. Kahnke’s impressive career record at SCSU is 113-12.

Husky Notes and News:

  • The Huskies have finished as the runner-up at the NCAA Division II championships in 2011 and 2012…last year, SCSU charted 95.0 points at the NCAA finals, while Nebraska Kearney won the title with 107.0 points.
  • SCSU has crowned three individual champs in action at the NCAA Division II finals. In 2012, Derek Skala won first place at 184-pounds and John Sundgren was the DII champ in 2011 at 157-pounds. In 1995, SCSU’s Gene Hanemann gained the top spot…on the topic of national champs, SCSU athletes earned 10 NAIA individual titles from 1958 to 1967. This list includes Dick Anderson in 1958, Monte Sinner in 1961, Grant Nelson in 1963, Jim Hazewinkel in 1963, 1964, 1965 and 1967, Gary Smith in 1963 and 1964; and Mike Rybak in 1967.
  • The Huskies have enjoyed 10 top 10 finishes at the NCAA DII championships since 1975.
  • SCSU head coach Steve Costanzo won an NAIA national title at Dana College in 2006 before joining the staff at SCSU in 2006-07. Costanzo owns a 100-23 career record in seven seasons at SCSU.
  • The DII Coach of the Year in 2011 and the NSIC Coach of the Year in 2012 and 2011, Costanzo has seen his Husky squad finish among the top eight teams at the NCAA finals four times in the last four seasons. In 2009, SCSU placed eigth followed by a seventh place finish in 2010 and second place endings in 2011 and 2012.
  • SCSU has claimed first place finishes at the NWCA Division II National Duals in 2012 and 2013.
  • Under the leadership of Coach Costanzo, the Huskies have earned All-America honors 22 times at the NCAA DII championships since 2008.
  • SCSU’s returning All-Americans include Shamus O’Grady (3X), Jacob Kahnke (3X) and Jacob D. Horn (1X).
  • The Huskies have tied an NCAA Division II record with 47 consecutive dual match victories, which dates back to an 18-13 loss at Augustana on Jan. 30, 2011. Since that time, SCSU has posted consecutive 21-0 dual match records in 2011-12 and 2012-13.
  • At 36-1 this season, Shamus O’Grady leads the Huskies in wins. He needs to gain four wins at the NCAA finals to tie the team record of 40 wins set by Tad Merritt in 2010-11 (40-2). O’Grady has won 29 consecutive matches since a setback in the finals of the Finn Grinaker Open on Nov. 17 against Minnesota’s (DI) Brett Pfarr.
  • SCSU charted 140.5 points to win the regional title in 2013. The team record for most points scored at a regional tournament is 164 with the Huskies’ first place finish in 2012.
  • The most points SCSU has ever scored at the NCAA Division II finals was 95.0 points in 2012. The two second place finishes for the Huskies in 2011 and 2012 mark the highest team places for the Huskies at the national tournament in team history.
  • SCSU senior Jacob Kahnke has finished as the runner-up at 285-pounds in 2011 and 2012 with both his losses coming against Northern State’s Matt Meuleners. Kahnke earned the 2013 regional title at 285-pounds with a thrilling 3-1 win over Meuleners on Feb. 24.
  • SCSU has earned the nation’s nuber one ranking in the last four Division II national polls. SCSU wrestlers ranked nationally in the final poll for 2012-13 include 125 – #2 Eric Forde, 133 – #2 Andy Pokorny, 149 – #5 Jacob D. Horn, 157 – #2 Clint Poster, 184 – #1 Shamus O’Grady and 285 – #1 Jacob Kahnke.

NCAA Championship Information

NCAA Division II Championships Ticket Information: Please call 205-297-8291 (or purchase at box office)
Official 2013 NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships Website
2013 NCAA Winter Championships Festival Website

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