No. 21 Johnnie Wrestling Travels to Iowa Sunday for Two Duals

No. 21 Saint John’s returns to dual competition with a pair of bouts on Sunday, Feb. 9, in Dubuque, Iowa. The Johnnies are scheduled to face Wisconsin-Platteville at 1 p.m., followed by a 3 p.m. match with No. 28 Loras (Iowa).

Saint John's JohnniesA LOOK AT THE JOHNNIES: Four Saint John’s wrestlers placed in a tough field at the 2014 North Country Open last Saturday (Feb. 1) in Collegeville. The 176-man tournament included wrestlers from Augsburg, Concordia-Moorhead, Dickinson State (N.D.), Iowa Lakes C.C., Division I Minnesota, Division II MSU-Mankato, Division I North Dakota State, Pacific (Ore.), Ridgewater, Division II St. Cloud State and Division II Southwest Minnesota State.

Sophomore Ben Henle (Spicer, Minn./New London-Spicer), who was ranked ninth nationally by D3wrestle.com, went 3-2 to lead SJU with a third-place finish at 141 pounds. Sophomore Josh Willaert (Le Sueur, Minn./Le Sueur-Henderson) posted a 4-2 record, including two pins and a technical fall, to take fifth at 184 pounds. Sophomore Matt Kadrlik (Inver Grove Heights, Minn./Simley) and senior John Scepaniak (Avon, Minn./Holdingford) both went 3-2 to finish fourth and fifth, respectively, at heavyweight. Senior Ryan Arne (Orono, Minn.), ranked No. 10 at 157 pounds by the National Wrestling Coaches’ Association (NWCA), did not compete due to illness.

JV IN ACTION TONIGHT: The Johnnies’ junior varsity is scheduled to face Ridgewater and Southwest Minnesota State’s J.V. in Willmar tonight, beginning at 5 p.m.

NATIONAL RANKINGS: Henle dropped out of the top 10 at 141 pounds in the latest D3wrestle.com rankings released Feb. 4. Arne, Willaert and junior Joe Hessing (149 pounds, Loretto, Minn./Delano) joined Henle as “Contenders,” just outside of the top 10. Junior Ryan Michaelis (197 pounds, Monticello, Minn.) and sophomore John Wells (125 pounds, Janesville, Minn./Milton) were honorable mention.

A LOOK AT THE PIONEERS: Wisconsin-Platteville (3-6 dual record) ended a four-dual skid with a pair of wins against the Milwaukee School of Engineering (Wis.) and Knox (Ill.) Jan. 24. Sophomore Cole Ferguson leads the way for Platteville with a 13-4 record at 125 pounds, while classmate Mason Bohm is 12-6 between 133 and 141.

A LOOK AT THE DUHAWKS: Loras (7-10 dual record), ranked No. 28 nationally, touts two nationally-ranked wrestlers, both of which will take on wrestlers ranked, or have been ranked, from SJU. Senior Matt Holmes (13-3 record) is ranked as high as fourth (D3wrestle.com) at 141 pounds (No. 9 by NWCA), while junior Steve DeWitt (24-3 record) has won 18 of his last 19 matches on the year at 157 pounds, including nine bonus-point victories. DeWitt is ranked third nationally by both sets of rankings.

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