FARGO, N.D. – The North Dakota State wrestling team travels to Tulsa, Oklahoma this weekend for the 2023 NCAA Wrestling Championships. The event will take place Thursday, March 16 through Saturday, March 18 at the BOK Center.
Franek Headlines Six NDSU Qualifiers
No. 4 seed Jared Franek (157, 22-1) is one of six NCAA qualifiers for the Bison, tied for the most in the NCAA Division I era with 2015 and 2020 (not competed due to COVID-19 pandemic). Franek’s No. 4 seed matches the highest seed for a Bison in the Division I era (2004-05), matching Steven Monk (165, 2014), who went on to finish third.
Franek is joined by No. 7 seed Michael Caliendo (165, 24-3), No. 13 seed Kellyn March (149, 24-7), No. 16 seed Owen Pentz (197, 17-7), No. 29 seed DJ Parker (184, 18-10) and No. 32 seed McGwire Midkiff (133, 15-11).
Franek is a four-time national qualifier for the Bison, while Pentz is making his third trip. Caliendo, March, Midkiff and Parker are making their first trips to the national championships.
Thursday, March 17
Session 1 – Pigtails and First-Round – 11 a.m. (ESPNU)
Session 2 – Second Round, Wrestle-Back Prelims, Wrestle-Back First Round – 6 p.m. (ESPN)
Friday, March 18
Session 3 – Quarterfinals, Wrestle-Back Second and Third Rounds – 11 a.m. (ESPNU)
Session 4 – Semifinals, Blood Round, Consolation Fourth Round – 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Saturday, March 19
Session 5 – Medal Rounds – 10 a.m. (ESPNU)
Session 6 – Championships – 6 p.m. (ESPN)
All-session tickets are available through TicketMaster. Seats start as low as $5 for the first three sessions, with prices going up for the semifinal, medal round and championship sessions. To view all ticket options and availability, visit ticketmaster.com A link to purchase tickets can be found on the wrestling schedule page at gobison.com.
All matches from each of the six sessions will be available on the ESPN family of networks. The day sessions will all be televised live on ESPNU, with the evening sessions, including the championship matches, televised on ESPN. The ESPN app will also contain live links to individual mat feeds, as well as mat cast and command center feeds throughout the entire tournament.
Statistics of all matches will be available through TrackWrestling. Statistics will also be available on the NCAA mobile app, which is available at: www.ncaatickets.com/championship/wrestling/champinfo
March Nearly Matches Own NDSU Pin Record, Reaches Personal Best In Pins
In a dual against Buffalo, Kellyn March pinned Kaleb Burgess in 13 seconds, one second shy of March’s fastest pin and the NDSU Division I record pin of 12 seconds, set last season in a dual against Edinboro’s Clayton Bashor. At the Big 12 Championships, March recorded four victories, with three coming by fall, bringing his season total to six, one more than his previous season best of five last year.
NCAA D1 Qualifiers
The Bison have had 64 NCAA Div. I qualifiers in 15 years of postseason eligibility, including 21 over the last four seasons. Rich in wrestling history, the Bison sent 26 to NCAA Div. I Championships from 1971 to 1991, bringing the total to 90. The Bison have 10 All-Americans at the Div. I Championships, including a best finish of 3rd by Steven Monk at 165 in 2014. In 2015, Kurtis Julson and Hayden Zillmer both placed in the top 8.
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