SJU Wrestling Set for Two Road Duals This Week

The Johnnie wrestling team hits the road for two duals this week, beginning with a 7 p.m. meeting at Ridgewater on Thursday, Jan. 19, in Willmar. SJU then travels to face No. 2 Augsburg for a 2 p.m. dual on Sunday, Jan. 22, at Si Melby Hall in Minneapolis.

No. 23 (Division II) MSU-Mankato won the dual’s first eight matches in a 38-3 win over Saint John’s (5-1 dual record) last Wednesday (Jan. 11) in Collegeville’s Guild Hall (Old Gym). The Mavericks won three matches by two points or less and recorded six bonus-point victories. Senior Robert Tait (Faribault, Minn./Bethlehem Academy) improved to 6-1 on the year for SJU (5-1 dual record) with the Johnnies’ lone win at 197 pounds, 6-4. SJU started the dual with a pair of close losses by freshmen. Anthony Hennen (Cologne, Minn./Norwood-Young America) suffered a 4-3 defeat, with the deciding point recorded due to riding time in the third period, at 125 pounds and Noah Becker (Browerville, Minn.) scored a late reversal but could not get back points in a 7-5 defeat at 133. Senior Colin Fisher (Eagan, Minn.) lost his first match of the season (4-1 record), a 3-1 decision, at heavyweight.

sjulogoSATURDAY AT RIDGEWATER: Five Johnnies competed at the Ridgewater Open last Saturday (Jan. 14). Freshmen Anthony Hennen (Cologne, Minn./Norwood-Young America) and Jake Fernholz (Sartell, Minn./Sartell-St. Stephen) finished fifth at 125 (3-2 record) and 149 pounds (2-2), respectively. Freshman Jerod Novak (Aitkin, Minn.) took sixth at 157 pounds with a 2-2 record. None of the six losses between the three wrestlers were to Division III opponents: two Division I (South Dakota State), two Division II (Northern State, Southwest Minnesota State) and two NAIA (Morningside, Iowa).

THURSDAY’S LINEUP (at Ridgewater): The Johnnies are expected to field the following lineup Thursday night in Willmar:
125: Anthony Hennen (8-15)
133: Noah Becker (17-7)
141: Graham Evavold (1-11)
149: Jake Fernholz (2-6)
157: Dan Gainer (0-15)
165: Jack Barsody (6-9)
174: Mike Wagner (0-0)
184: Luke Dodd (8-6)
197: Nick Pegelow (3-9)
285: Dominic Skawiniak (0-2) or Quincy Spiering (0-3)

SUNDAY’S LINEUP (at Augsburg): SJU’s projected lineup for Sunday’s showdown with nationally-ranked Augsburg is below.
125: Riley Drew (2-4) or Anthony Hennen (8-15)
133: Noah Becker (17-7)
141: Andrew Smith (5-13)
149: Branden Schorr (8-8)
157: Jerod Novak (11-10)
165: Jack Barsody (6-9) or Mike Wagner (0-0)
174: Teddy Erickson (10-7)
184: Glenn Castro (3-7) or Luke Dodd (8-6)
197: Robert Tait (6-1)
285: Colin Fisher (4-1)

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TWO YEARS AGO: The Johnnies recorded a 31-9 win over Ridgewater the last time these two programs met for a dual on Jan. 28, 2015, in Collegeville. Following a double forfeit at 125 pounds, SJU built a 15-0 lead thanks to a forfeit at 133, a 7-3 decision from junior Chris Ortman (Pierz, Minn.) at 141 and a pin in 2:28 by senior Branden Schorr (Mantorville, Minn./Kasson-Mantorville) at 149. Chris Schmidt erased a 5-0 deficit with 14 consecutive points before pinning Ochirbat Bayanjargal ’15 in 5:36 at 157 pounds for Ridgewater. The Johnnies responded with four straight wins to earn the dual victory. Senior Brian McCann (Deerfield, Ill.) collected a pin at 165 pounds, followed by decisions from senior Glenn Castro (Thousand Oaks, Calif./Westlake) and junior Nick Hoff (Rushford, Minn./Rushford-Peterson) at 174 (11-6) and 184 (7-3) pounds, respectively. Tait tallied a 16-3 major decision at 197 pounds.

A LOOK AT THE AUGGIES: No. 2 Augsburg (8-1 dual record) won five weight classes and recorded 12 placewinners to claim the team title at the Cornell (Iowa) Matman Open last Saturday (Jan. 14). Freshman No. 5/10 Victor Gliva (125, 20-4 record); freshman David Flynn (141, 19-5 record), a mid-season transfer from Division I North Dakota State; freshman No. 6 Ryan Epps (149, 18-3 record); junior Gable Frandsen (165, 16-9 record) and senior No. 3 Donny Longendyke (285, 11-1 record) all won their respective weight classes. Freshman Owen Webster, who is ranked No. 2/4 nationally and is 19-1 on the year, did not compete at 184 pounds. The Auggies host No. 22 Concordia-Moorhead Friday night (Jan. 20) prior to Sunday’s dual with SJU.

A YEAR AGO: Then-No. 8 Augsburg recorded six bonus-point wins in a 37-4 victory over SJU back on Jan. 24 in Collegeville. Augsburg jumped out to a 7-0 lead and won the final seven matches to earn the dual victory. Ben Henle ’16 accrued 3:08 of riding time and recorded a takedown with two seconds remaining to put SJU on the scoreboard with an 11-3 major decision at 141 pounds. All five major decisions in the dual were recorded by the exact eight-point margin. Senior Teddy Erickson (Annandale, Minn.) scored a takedown with 30 seconds remaining to close within two (8-6), but lost by a 9-6 score at 165 pounds.

SERIES HISTORY: The Johnnies have won two out of the last eight duals against the Auggies, with their last win occurring on Jan. 26, 2013 (23-10). The other win (18-13), on Nov. 26, 2008, snapped a 22-match losing streak to Augsburg, as well as the Auggies’ 70-match winning streak over Minnesota Division II and III opponents (since 1996) and their streak of 92 consecutive wins over Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference foes (since the 1986-87 season).

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