Mankato, Minn. — Head coach Jim Makovsky has announced that eight student-athletes have joined the Maverick wrestling program.
This group is represented by seven incoming freshmen and one transfer.
“We welcome a large and talented class to our program, all seven incoming freshmen placed in the top-three of their respective State Tournaments during their senior year. These are the type of young men that you want to build a program around. We’re very excited to see what they can do,” assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Ty Eustice said.
Biographies of this year’s recruiting class appear below.
Kyler Rieck (Spirit Lake, Iowa/Spirit Lake H.S.)
Rieck was a 2019 Iowa 2A state champion at 152 lbs. He was also a 2018 2A state runner-up at 152 lbs.
Eustice on Kyler Rieck: “Kyler signed during the early signing period and then capped off his senior season with a State Title. Kyler has great passion for the sport, wrestling freestyle and greco in the off-season. We expect to have another mature, talented leader when we start team activities.”
Kyle Cavanaugh (Caledonia, Minn./Caledonia H.S.)
Cavanaugh joins the Mavericks after becoming the 2019 Minnesota state champion (1A) at 145 lbs. He was also a 2018 Bi-State Classic Champion and a 2018 Minnesota State Champion at 138 lbs.
Eustice on Kyle Cavanaugh: “Kyle brings a winning mentality to the program after winning back to back state titles. Our construction management program will be a great fit for him and we can’t wait to see him push our 141- and 149-pound national qualifiers when we get him in the wrestling room.”
Shane Gibson (Livingston, Mont./Park H.S.)
Gibson was a 2019 Montana State Champion at 205 lbs. He also placed sixth at 182 lbs., in the 2018 state tournament and placed second at 182 lbs., in the 2017 state tournament.
Eustice on Shane Gibson: “Shane came recommended from our last NCAA Champion Jason Rhoten, who coaches a different high school in Montana. Shane has also wrestled a lot of freestyle/greco in the off-season and is a talented big guy—great feel for the sport. We are excited to have a tough Montana wrestler in the room.”
Mike Smith (Amery, Wis./Amery H.S.)
Smith joins the Mavericks after becoming 2019 Wisconsin State runner-up (D2) at 152 lbs. He placed sixth at 132 pounds in the 2018 state tournament.
Eustice on Mike Smith: “Mike has been on our radar for a couple years now and is a great fit for our program. He made a big jump in weight between his junior and senior years and handled it very well, finishing as a state runner-up. Mike has a big upside, is very hungry to improve and will only keep getting better.”
Cole Gille (Pulaski, Wis./Pulaski H.S.)
Gille was the 2019 state runner-up in D1 at 120 lbs. He also placed third at 120 lbs., in 2018 and fifth in 2017 at 113 lbs.
Eustice on Cole Gille: “Cole is a great competitor, explosive and really smart on the mat. We are very happy to get a talented Wisconsin lightweight in the program. Cole has the ability and attitude to push all of the guys in our room.”
Nic Leo (Ankeny, Iowa/Ankeny Centennial H.S.)
Leo joins the program after placing third in the 2019 Iowa 3A State Tournament at 182 lbs. He was also a state qualifier at 170 lbs., in 2018.
Eustice on Nic Leo: “Nic has a unique story. He did not get involved in the sport until eighth-grade. He was junior varsity his freshman year, varsity as a sophomore, state qualifier as junior, and then went 42-4 as a senior on his way to a third-place finish in the large class of Iowa. Nic’s best days of wrestling are ahead of him and we are excited to watch him grow in our program.”
Julian Purney (Galesville, Wis./Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau H.S.)
Purney was a runner-up in the 2019 Wisconsin State Tournament (D2) at 126 lbs. He finished in sixth place in the 2018 state tournament at 126 lbs., and finished in second place at 120 lbs., in 2017.
Eustice on Julian Purney: “Julian is another tough lightweight that we are very excited to have in our room. He has had a lot of success, but is very focused and determined to succeed at this level. Julian has all the characteristics you look for in a recruit. Julian will redshirt his first season at MSU.”
Sam Nordquist (Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa H.S,/North Dakota)
Nordquist joins the Mavericks as the lone transfer student in the class after one year absent from wrestling. He was a back-to-back Minnesota State team champion in 2017 and 2018 in Class A. He was also a 2017 state qualifier in 1A at 152 lbs.
Eustice on Sam Nordquist: “Sam went to the University of North Dakota for one year out of high school but missed the sport of wrestling. He transferred to MSU to pursue a degree in Aviation and is motivated to build himself back into a high-caliber wrestler and contribute to this program. He comes highly recommended from Coach Steffen of the very respected Zumbrota-Mazeppa wrestling program; Sam was integral in their 2017 and 2018 State Team Titles, going 5-1 in dual meets at the two state tournaments.”
Under the guidance of Makovsky, who is entering his 27th season with the Mavericks, Minnesota State finished the 2018-19 season with a 9-2 overall record.