St. Cloud State wins final three bouts to earn 19-13 win in Bismarck
BISMARCK, N.D. – No. 5 St. Cloud State Wrestling won their final three matches to seal a 19-13 win over No. 14 Mary at the McDowell Center in Bismarck on Friday evening. Down 6-3 and 13-9 at separate moments in the dual, the Huskies made a statement by winning four of the last five bouts to complete the comeback.
165-pounder Anthony Herrera opened the dual with a match against Riley Noble, grinding out his patented style of wrestling to earn a 6-1 decision while adding plenty of riding time. Bryce Dagel followed with a terrific effort at 174 against No. 2 Max Bruss, wrestling tough in neutral to keep it scoreless after five minutes. Bruss earned his escape in the third before Dagel could clinch riding time, handing the Huskies’ redshirt freshman a 1-0 loss.
After Bryce FitzPatrick dropped an 8-5 decision at 184 to Wyatt Lidberg, No. 10 Dominic Murphy drew Matt Kaylor at 197. Murphy opened up the scoring with a pair of third-period takedowns to clinch an 8-2 decision and bring the dual even at six a piece.
Mary added a 3-1 decision at heavyweight as Elijah Novak gave up a last-second takedown to Luke Tweeton after a shot missed, sending the dual to intermission with Mary holding a 9-6 advantage. No. 7 Paxton Creese brought the Huskies right back with an 11-5 decision at 125, using three reversals and a four-point tilt to earn a high-scoring win over Jaden VerHagen.
Caleb Meekins dropped a 14-1 major decision to No. 3 Reece Barnhardt in a rematch at 133. No. 11 Alyeus Craig quieted the crowd with a dominant 8-2 decision over Laken Boese at 141, reversing him twice with a pair of takedowns to draw SCSU within one team point. No. 8 Joey Bianchini followed at 149, winning a scrappy 9-6 decision over Leo Mushinsky.
With the dual coming down to the final bout at 157, No. 2 Nick Novak made his return to the mat and cruised to an 8-0 major decision over Anthony Velasquez – riding him out in the second and third while adding three takedowns for the bonus-point win.
The Huskies added two wins in extra matches, as Tyson Meyer earned a 4-3 decision over Sam Bruss at 184 and Kaleb Haase shut out Levi Malcolm 5-0 at heavyweight.
No. 5 St. Cloud State 19, No. 14 Mary 13
Feb. 10, 2023 | McDowell Activity Center | Bismarck, N.D.
165: Anthony Herrera (SCSU) dec. Riley Noble (MARY), 6-1
174: No. 2 Max Bruss (MARY) dec. Bryce Dagel (SCSU), 1-0
184: Wyatt Lidberg (MARY) dec. Bryce FitzPatrick (SCSU), 8-5
197: No. 10 Dominic Murphy (SCSU) dec. Matt Kaylor (MARY), 8-2
HWT: Luke Tweeton (MARY) dec. Elijah Novak (SCSU), 3-1
125: No. 7 Paxton Creese (SCSU) dec. Jaden VerHagen (MARY), 11-5
133: No. 3 Reece Barnhardt (MARY) MD Caleb Meekins (SCSU), 14-1
141: No. 11 Alyeus Craig (SCSU) dec. Laken Boese (MARY), 8-2
149: No. 8 Joey Bianchini (SCSU) dec. Leo Mushinsky (MARY), 9-6
157: No. 2 Nick Novak (SCSU) MD Anthony Velazquez (MARY), 8-0
Quotables – St. Cloud State head coach Steve Costanzo
On entering the final three bouts down 13-9… “All three guys knew what was on the line. We talked about it during the intermission. They’re veterans, and they understand the circumstances. I felt like we were in really good shape heading into that last stretch with our last three guys. Those are some of the strongest wrestlers on our team – 141, 149 and 157 – so I was very confident with them stepping up and wrestling.”
On individuals who impressed during the dual… “Nick Novak coming out and performing the way that he did – I was very pleased with that. Paxton stepped in and went through some adversity earlier in the day, he stepped up for his team and his teammates. Another nice performance from Dominic Murphy at 197. It takes a team effort at these duals. A lot of things have happened, and fortunately we were able to pull it out.”
On whether the team grew as a group with the effort in Bismarck… “Oh yeah. You know it’s hostile – probably the most hostile environment we’ve wrestled in this year – our guys embraced it and got the job done. It’s good preparation for what’s left to come, and it showed them they can handle adversity, handle the atmosphere that they’re dealt with. We’re proud of the way they handled their situation tonight.”
The Huskies close out their road dual schedule with a 2:00 p.m. CT start at (RV) Minot State on Saturday.
Information regarding single dual and season tickets can be found at scsutickets.com. For all the latest on St. Cloud State Wrestling, stay tuned to SCSUHuskies.com and follow the team on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.