MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota Wrestling program fell 22-13 to the Ohio State Buckeyes on Sunday night in Dinkytown. The Gophers got their hand raised in four bouts on the evening, including a pair of times against ranked opponents.
Ryan Thomas got the Gophers on the board to start the dual at 157-pounds in his Maturi Pavilion debut. Thomas needed only one takedown of Ohio State’s Elijah Cleary to get Minnesota on the board with an early three team points.
In a battle of ranked wrestlers, No.18 Owen Webster took care of No.23 Rocky Jordan by 5-4 decision. Webster got on the board first with a takedown and turn for the early 4-0 lead. The Shakopee native’s escape to begin the second period proved to be the difference as he earned team points for the Gophers.
Heavyweight Gable Steveson got the Gophers going straight out of the intermission with a dominant 13-2 major decision victory over No.23 Gary Traub. Steveson got a takedown less than ten seconds into the dual before pouring it on with takedowns and turns towards a bonus-point victory.
Pat McKee followed Steveson’s victory with another of his own as he defeated Malik Heinselman 5-1 to give the Gophers their first lead since Thomas’ bout.
In the penultimate match of the night, No.1 Luke Pletcher and No.5 Mitch McKee put on a show for the fans. While McKee got the first takedown of the night, Pletcher stormed back with five more to confirm his top-ranking.
Of McKee’s three losses this season, two have come to Pletcher.
The final match of the evening featured No.4 Brayton Lee and No.6 Sammy Sasso meeting for the sixth time in the calendar year. With a late takedown, Sasso snapped Lee’s three-bout winning streak and took home the 4-2 victory.
“It was a great dual, and one where we came up just short a few too many times,” head coach Brandon Eggum said. “We had a lot of great chances against a great team but couldn’t get it done tonight.”
Minnesota hits the road next weekend to the Hoosier state where they will take on Purdue before preparing for a dual against the Indiana Hoosiers.
The Maroon and Gold return home for a February 9 dual against the Penn State Nittany Lions.
Ohio State 22 Minnesota 13
157: #21 Ryan Thomas (Minnesota) dec. Elijah Cleary (Ohio State) 3-2
165: #12 Ethan Smith (Ohio State) maj. dec. Bailee O’Reilly (Minnesota) 12-4
174: #8 Kaleb Romero (Ohio State) dec. #7 Devin Skatzka (Minnesota) 2-1
184: #18 Owen Webster (Minnesota) dec. #23 Rocky Jordan (Ohio State) 5-4
197: #1 Kollin Moore (Ohio State) tech fall Hunter Ritter (Minnesota) 20-3, 4:29
285: #1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota) maj. dec. #23 Gary Traub (Ohio State) 13-2
125: #13 Patrick McKee (Minnesota) dec. Malik Heinselman (Ohio State) 5-1
133: #20 Jordan Decatur (Ohio State) maj. dec. Jake Gliva (Minnesota) 16-6
141: #1 Luke Pletcher (Ohio State) dec. #5 Mitch McKee (Minnesota) 12-6
149: #6 Sammy Sasso (Ohio State) dec.#4 Brayton Lee (Minnesota) 4-2
Golden Gopher Wrestling Tickets
Check out Gopher Wrestling at gophersports.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.