The Gophers travel to Las Vegas for the Cliff Keen Invitational Tournament which will begin on Friday and close out Saturday afternoon. The first day will feature the first few championship rounds as well as the first two consolation rounds before the final matches are fought on Saturday to determine the winner and subsequent placements.
The Cliff Keen Invitational is a renowned tournament known for its compilation of elite talent from across the nation. This year’s tournament features top-10 programs such as Ohio State and Cornell and includes nearly half of the ranked wrestlers across all weight classes.
Cliff Keen himself was a 20th-century wrestler and eventual head coach of the University of Michigan from 1925 to 1970. This will be the 36th annual Cliff Keen Invitational.
Schedule of Events (All times central)
Friday, November 30
11:00 am: Round 1 Pig Tail Championship, Round 2 of (32) Championship, Round 3 Consolation of (32), Round 4 Championship of (16), Consolation 1st of (16) Round 5 Consolation 2nd of (16)
8:00 pm: Round 6 Championship Quarter Finals & Consolation Round 1st of (8)
Saturday, December 1
11:00 am: Round 7 Consolation 2nd of (8)
12:00 am: Round 8 Championship Semi-Finals, Round 9 Consolation Semifinals, Consolation Finals 5th & 6th, 7th & 8th Places
5:00 pm: CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS 1st & 2nd, 3rd & 4th Places
Last Time Out
In their last dual on Sunda,y November 25, 201,8 the Gopher wrestling team took down the South Dakota State Jackrabbits 35-6. The Gophers scored four technical falls and one pin for five bonus point victories among the eight total victories.
The first four Gopher wrestlers won for the team to take a 19-0 lead and then they closed out the dual with two wins to secure the 35-6 victory. Now No. 15 Tommy Thorn took down then-No. 17 Henry Pohlmeyer, the lone ranked wrestler for the Jackrabbits, in a revenge match after Thorn lost to him in the finals of the Daktronics Open.
Elsewhere in the country
Four Gophers who aren’t traveling to Las Vegas with the team will be headed to the Buena Vista Open. 165-pound Jake Allar and 174-pound Bailee O’Reillly will be joining 197-pounders Bobby Steveson and Brandon Krone at the tournament to get some competition in over the weekend.
Climbing the ladder
Several Gophers are nearing career milestones that could arrive before the end of the year. Nearing the century mark is No. 7 Ethan Lizak who currently holds 93 wins so far as a Gopher. No. 5 Mitch McKee sits only two wins away from 50 on his career. Tommy Thorn has 79 after defeating Pohlmeyer last weekend. Elsewhere 165-pound Carson Brolsma needs only one win to reach 30 on his career.
Next week the Gophers travel even further west to California in order to dual Fresno State. The Gophers defeated them 38-7 last season at Maturi Pavilion. Afterwards, the Gophers get a week off before traveling to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida for the South Beach Duals.
The team returns home to open their Big Ten slate on January 6 against Rutgers.