After celebrating Senior Day at the Sports Pavilion last Sunday, the Gophers close out the regular season as the visitors for Iowa State’s Senior Day this coming Sunday. In this week’s Coach’s Corner, Brandon Eggum looks back at his team’s performance in its last home dual and offers a preview of the regular season finale this weekend.
The Gophers split 10 matches against fourth-ranked Ohio State, but bonus points tipped the score in the Buckeyes’ favor. A pin from No. 8 Jake Short at 157 pounds and a tech fall for No. 8 Michael Kroells at heavyweight put extra points on the board for Minnesota, while ranked wins for No. 2 Brett Pfarr and No. 11 Tommy Thorn, at 197 and 141 pounds, respectively, and a decision for No. 18 Nick Wanzek rounded out the scoring. Four bonus wins for Ohio State proved too much to overcome in a tight, 24-20 loss. Eggum highlights those five winning performances and also discusses a tough loss at 125 pounds.
Looking ahead to this weekend, the Gophers will take a quick trip to Ames for a Sunday dual against the Cyclones. Eggum provides his thoughts on some of the key matches for the weekend, particularly the 133-pound contest pitting No. 17 Mitch McKee against No. 10 Earl Hall. In his true freshman season, McKee has seen plenty of ranked competition. Sunday’s match will be his 14th against a ranked opponent (tied with Michael Kroells for most on the team) and his ninth against a top-team wrestler, the most of anyone in the lineup.