MOORHEAD, Minn. — The Minnesota State University Moorhead wrestling team will open their home schedule with an NSIC dual against Northern State on Friday and hosting the annual Dragon Open on Saturday at Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse. The Friday dual will also feature Moorhead High School facing Fargo Davies at the same time in a dual.
Last season, the Dragons beat the Wolves 36-9. The last time the two teams faced off in Moorhead was Jan. 27, 2017 when MSUM picked up a 23-15 win over the Wolves. The Dragons have won six straight meetings.
Davies is coached by former Dragon head coach Keenan Spiess while Moorhead is coached by former Dragon wrestler Gerad Fugleberg.
About the Dragons
The Dragons are 0-1 on their dual season after losing a tough dual to crosstown rival Concordia on Nov. 20. The Dragons picked up five wins, with three of those wins being major decisions. Sophomore Cole Jones started the night with a 12-1 major decision followed by major decisions from freshman Braydon Ortloff and senior Adam Blees. Redshirt junior Logan Rhode and Sam Erckenbrack both picked up decision wins to wrap up the night.
Jones is 8-2 at 125 for MSUM while redshirt freshman Evan Foster is 9-3 at 184. Erckenbrack is 7-4 at 285 while redshirt freshman Mason Schulz is 8-6 at 141. Ortloff is 5-4 at 157 pounds for the Dragons.
Scouting the Wolves
Northern State enters the dual with a 1-0 record after beating Concordia-Moorhead 23-14. Since then, they have competed in two open tournaments. Their last competition was Nov. 17 at the Finn Grinaker Open. Kenny Jones is the top wrestler for the Wolves, having gone 12-5 last season before suffering a season-ending injury. Head coach Rocky Burkett is in his fourth season as head coach.
The Dragons have two athletes ranked in the first NCAA Division II rankings put out by the NCAA Division II Wrestling Coaches Association. Jones is ranked 11th at 125 pounds while Schumacher picked up a ninth-place ranking in the nation at 149 pounds. As a team, the Dragons are receiving votes in the preseason poll. Dragons picked to finish sixth in NSIC In the preseason coaches’ poll, the Dragons were picked to finish sixth in the NSIC with Blees named MSUM’s wrestler to watch. Defending national champions St. Cloud State was chosen to finish first in the conference.
Meet the coaches
Head coach Kris Nelson is returning for his 10th season as MSUM head coach. He is assisted by former MSUM wrestler Blake Bosch (second season), Justin Solberg (fourth season) and Tyler Lehmann (second season).
After the Northern dual, the Dragons will host the Dragon Open on Saturday before hosting Division III power Augsburg (MN) on Dec. 6.