SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – The ninth-ranked Gophers completed a perfect first half of the season on Sunday afternoon after sweeping their triangular meet with Lindenwood and Cal Poly.
The Gophers dominated throughout the day, winning 16 of their 20 bouts in the afternoon to cap off a 3-0 weekend road trip.
Action kicked off at 1:30 p.m CST, as the Maroon & Gold first took on the Lindenwood Lions, where they would roll to a 48-6 victory on the back of nine bonus-point victories from the Gopher competitors.
Action kicked off at 125 pounds, where Patrick McKee would earn a quick first-period fall over Lindenwood’s Austin Kegley, followed up by an 18-3 technical fall from Aaron Nagao at 133 pounds.
Following a loss at 141 pounds, Michael Blockhus got the Gophers back on track with an 18-3 technical fall of his own over Ben Bohr, while Brayton Lee would receive a forfeit at 157 pounds to push the Gopher lead to 22-3 at the halfway point.
Minnesota would then string together four more technical falls to start the back half, as Andrew Sparks, Bailee O’Reilly, Isaiah Salazar, and Michial Foy would all put up five team points a piece on the scoreboard.
Heavyweight Keaton Kluever would cap off the dual with a second-period fall over David Hernandez, cementing Minnesota’s first 40-point performance since 2021, where they routed Maryland by a score of 48-0.
The Gophers would then compete against host school Cal Poly to close out the afternoon, as the “U” would win seven of the ten bouts en route to a 22-12 victory over the Mustangs.
Once again starting at 125 pounds, Patrick McKee earned a 5-3 sudden victory decision over No. 14 Antonio Lorenzo, as he earned a match-winning takedown in overtime after trapping Lorenzo on his back in a scramble to earn the exposure takedown.
Aaron Nagao followed up that performance with a dominant 10-0 major decision over Ethan Rotundo, earning a trio of takedowns and over five minutes of riding time in the match.
Jake Bergeland would continue the hot start for Minnesota with a 7-6 decision over Lawrence Saenz, with takedowns in both the first and second periods proving to be the difference for the Hugo, Minn., native.
After Michael Blockhus dropped a close 5-2 decision against the 11th-ranked Dom Demas, Brayton Lee would get the Gophers back on track with a 7-5 decision at 157 pounds over Luka Wick.
Then, Andrew Sparks capped off a perfect day in his home state with a solid showing against No. 30 Legend Lamer, earning a second-period takedown and putting on a tough ride throughout the match to help earn himself a 4-0 decision win.
Bailee O’Reilly earned a 4-2 decision of his own at 174 pounds before Isaiah Salazar dominated ranked foe Adam Kemp by a score of 6-2 to help Minnesota clinch the dual.
The Gophers would drop the final two bouts of the dual, closing out the contest with a 22-12 final score.
With the victory, the Gophers jump out to a 7-0 start to the season to match their best start to a season since the 2014-15 campaign. Lindenwood falls to 1-5 on the year after being swept in both duals of the triangular, while Cal Poly will settle for a 2-1 mark after splitting Sunday’s duals.
#9 MINNESOTA (48), LINDENWOOD (6)
125: Patrick McKee (MINN) pinned Austin Kegler (LIND), 1:22
133: Aaron Nagao (MINN) tech. fall Ben Lindley (LIND), 18-3
141: Jake Bergeland (MINN) pinned Kelen Napier (LIND) 0:34
149: Michael Blockus (MINN) tech. fall Ben Bohr (LIND) 18-3
157: Brayton Lee (MINN) won by forfeit
165: Andrew Sparks (MINN) tech. fall Kaden Charboneau (LIND) 16-1
174: Bailee O’Reilly (MINN) tech. fall Drew Gvillo (LIND) 19-4
184: Isaiah Salazar (MINN) tech. fall Austin Raynor (LIND) 16-0
197: Michial Foy (MINN) tech. fall Ryan Golnick (LIND) 15-0
285: Keaton Kluever (MINN) pinned David Hernandez (LIND) 4:19
#9 MINNESOTA (22), #28 CAL POLY (12)
125: #4 Patrick McKee (MINN) dec. #14 Antonio Lorenzo (CP), 5-3 SV1
133: #20 Aaron Nagao (MINN) maj. dec. Ethan Rotundo (CP), 10-0
141: #4 Jake Bergeland (MINN) dec. Lawrence Saenz (CP), 8-6
149: #11 Dom Demas (CP) dec. #16 Michael Blockhus (MINN), 5-2
157: #4 Brayton Lee (MINN) dec. Luka Wick (CP), 7-5
165: #16 Andrew Sparks (MINN) dec. #30 Legend Lamer (CP), 4-0
174: #17 Bailee O’Reilly (MINN) dec. Jarad Priest (CP), 4-2
184: #15 Isaiah Salazar (MINN) dec. #19 Adam Kemp (CP), 6-2
197: #7 Bernie Truax (CP) pinned #20 Michial Foy (MINN), 0:24
HWT: Trevor Tinker (CP) dec. #24 Garrett Joles (MINN), 9-7 SV1