MARSHALL, Minn. – The Southwest Minnesota State wrestling team (0-3, 0-2 NSIC) prepares to host the first conference dual of the 2019-20 season on Friday versus Northern State at 7 p.m. in the PE Gym.
SMSU splits weekend play after hosting Northern State on Friday, the Mustangs travel to Moorhead to face the Dragons of MSU Moorhead on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Nemzek Hall.
CATCHING UP WITH THE MUSTANGS — The Mustangs dropped a conference and a nonconference dual in last outings on Dec. 12 and 13. SMSU earned two bout victories over the then-ranked No. 6 Upper Iowa squad, who claimed a 28-6 victory over the Mustangs. Justin Sampson (141) and Robert Shields (149) were the two lone Mustangs to both earn a decision victory in the dual.
Against the division III defending national champion, Augsburg, the Mustangs claimed four-bout victories at 141, 157, 197, and rounded-out with a victory at 285. All Mustangs earned decision victories with Justin Sampson (141) kicking it off with a 5-4 final over Adam Mickelson, Nathan Moore (157) earned a 6-1 final over Jack Vaselaar, Jackson Ryan (197) earned a 7-2 final over Jonathan Zarnke, and Andrew Petersen (285) closed out the night with a 5-3 final over Tyler Kim.
REGIONAL RANKINGS – Four Mustang wrestlers made the cut in the Super Five Region Rankings, released on Dec. 31. Robert Shields ranks fifth at 149, Cole Hennen ranks fifth at 184, Jackson Ryan ranks fourth at 197, and Andrew Petersen ranks sixth at 285.
NORTHERN STATE— Northern State, 5-2 overall and 1-1 in NSIC play, is ranked No. 17 in the latest NWCA poll. The Wolves come into the match with four nationally-ranked wrestlers as Dayne Morton (133) is ranked fifth, Caden Moore (149) is ranked eighth, James Burks (157) is ranked ninth, and Marcus Placide (184) is ranked 11th. The wolves will face Augustana on Thursday before traveling to Marshall to face the Mustangs.
NORTHERN STATE HISTORY — SMSU leads the all-time history 27-10-3 after breaking an eight-dual winning streak a season ago. SMSU fell 22-16 to NSU in Aberdeen on Jan. 10. SMSU has only ever lost two consecutive matches to NSU which occurred in 2007 and 2008. SMSU has a 11-4-2 advantage of games played in Marshall.
MSU MOORHEAD— MSU Moorhead is 0-2 overall and 0-1 in the NSIC. The Dragons fell in their solo conference dual, 29-7 to Northern State. The Dragon roster includes two seniors, nine juniors, seven sophomores, two redshirt freshmen, and five true freshmen.
MSU MOORHEAD HISTORY —MSU Moorhead holds a 27-21-1 edge over SMSU in the all-time series, dating back to 1983. SMSU snapped a two-match losing streak a season ago with a 24-16 victory, the lone victory for the Mustangs last season, on Feb. 1, in Marshall. The Dragons also are 18-12-1 in matches played in Moorhead.
MUSTANG HEAD COACH — Jesse Nelson is in his 13th season as head coach at SMSU in 2019-20. Nelson was named the fourth coach in the program history on Aug. 22, 2007. Nelson, the 2013-14 NSIC Coach of the Year, Nelson has a career dual record of 82-98-1, including 31-59 in conference matches. During his tenure, Nelson has groomed 21 national qualifiers–including four two-time qualifiers and three three-time qualifiers–along with 12 All-NSIC honorees.
Probable SMSU Lineup
125 Hunter Pfantz
133 Jackson Stauffacher
141 Justin Sampson
149 Robert Shields
157 Nathan Moore
165 Jacob Backlund
174 Hayden Voxland
184 Cole Hennen
197 Jackson Ryan
285 Andrew Petersen
Northern State Probable Lineup
125: Landen Fischer/ Dane Christopherson
133: Dayne Morton/Robert Coyle
141: Kenny Jones/Nate Rodriguez
149: Caden Moore/Garret Thompson
157: James Burks/Bryan Burnett
165: Billy Holtan
174: Tanner Wiese/Jake Flakus
184: Marcus Placide/Riley Lura
197: Diego Gallegos
HWT: Caleb Lefferdink
MSUM Probable Lineup