Johnnie Wrestlers Return to Action Thursday vs. St. Olaf at Cretin-Derham Hall

The Saint John’s wrestling team returns to competition with a 7 p.m. dual, its first of the season, with St. Olaf on Thursday, Jan. 5, at Cretin-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul.

Saint John’s wrapped up the 2016 portion of its wrestling schedule on Dec. 10 at the St. Cloud State Husky Open. Freshman Noah Becker (Browerville, Minn.) led the Johnnies with a second-place finish at 133 pounds. He won his first two matches of the day with narrow decisions, 3-1 and 3-2, before falling to Jarred Oftedahl of Division II SCSU via fall in the championship bout. Becker has a 12-6 record this season. Freshman Jerod Novak (Aitkin, Minn.) was the other Johnnie with two wins on the day. He dropped his first match of the day, 3-1 to Adam Knutson of Division II Southwest Minnesota State, but bounced back with a major decision and technical fall. Novak ended the tournament with a 6-3 loss to Nick Mergen of Division I North Dakota State. SJU went 2-9 against Division I and Division II competition on the day.

125 – Freshman Anthony Hennen
133 – Freshman Noah Becker
141 – Freshman Andrew Smith
149 – Senior Branden Schorr
157 – Freshman Jerod Novak
165 – Freshman Dan Gainer
174 – Senior Teddy Erickson
184 – Sophomore Luke Dodd
197 – Senior Robert Tait
285 – Senior Colin Fisher

MORE DUALS ON THE DOCKET: The Johnnies’ next five dates of competition are all duals, beginning with the three-bout Chicago Duals this Saturday, Jan. 7, in the Windy City. SJU hosts Division II MSU-Mankato Jan. 11 in the Old Gym (Guild Hall) before visiting Ridgewater (Jan. 19), No. 3 Augsburg (Jan. 22) and No. 1 (Division II) St. Cloud State (Jan. 26).

A LOOK AT THE OLES: St. Olaf (0-4 dual record) dropped a 34-15 dual at home to Buena Vista (Iowa) its last time on the mat back on Dec. 10 in Northfield. Led by sophomore heavyweight Troy Beaman (13-5 record), the Oles’ 2016-17 roster currently consists of 12 underclassmen (freshmen/sophomores) and two upperclassmen (junior/senior). Thursday’s lineup is expected to field seven freshmen, two sophomores and a forfeit at 141 pounds (see below).

125 – Freshman Lucas Womack (4-10)
133 – Freshman Luke Wallace (3-10)
141 – Open
149 – Freshman Collin LaBrosse (7-9)
157 – Freshman Mike Matheson (6-9)
165 – Sophomore Bryant Ridgway (3-9)
174 – Freshman Benji Keillor (4-9)
184 – Freshman Daniel Gehrz (4-9)
197 – Freshman Sebastian Hyta (8-7)
285 – Sophomore Troy Beaman (13-5)

LAST YEAR’S DUAL: SJU earned its first dual win of the season with a 38-12 victory at St. Olaf last Dec. 14 (2015) in Northfield. The Johnnies took advantage of three forfeits and three bonus-point wins in the victory. SJU won the first five weights, including pins from John Wells ’16 and senior Branden Schorr (Mantorville, Minn./Kasson-Mantorville) at 125 and 157 pounds, respectively. St. Olaf stopped the bleeding with back-to-back wins from Sameh Almousa (165) and Garrett Beaman (174). Senior Glenn Castro (Thousand Oaks, Calif./Westlake) added five more points to the team’s ledger with a technical fall at 184 pounds. The Oles’ Zack Gibson, who was ranked as high as sixth nationally by, ended the dual with a narrow 2-0 win over senior Colin Fisher (Eagan, Minn.) at heavyweight.

SERIES HISTORY: SJU is 24-0 against St. Olaf since the 1990-91 season and has outscored the Oles 909-214 during that span.

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