Gophers Roll to Dual Wins over Morgan State, George Mason

MINNEAPOLIS – The No. 14 Minnesota wrestling program improved its dual record to 3-0 after dominant victories over Morgan State (0-5) and George Mason (4-2) Saturday in Fairfax, Va. The Gophers shut out the Bears, 52-0, and followed that with a 37-6 victory over the host-Patriots.

The Golden Gophers had little trouble with Morgan State, a first-year HBCU program, as they won all nine contested matches by bonus points. Only one bout made it past the second period and no takedowns were recorded by the Bears. The shutout was the team’s first since a 48-0 win over Maryland in Jan. of 2021, and it was the Gophers’ largest win, and first time reaching 50 points, since a 53-0 victory over Duke in Jan. of 2019.

Seventh-ranked sixth-year senior Patrick McKee got the match started at 125 pounds with his second pin in as many matches this season. Redshirt sophomore Jager Eisch, making his season dual debut, and 31st-ranked redshirt sophomore Vance VomBaur followed with 18-0, tech fall victories at 133 and 141 pounds, respectively.

Fellow redshirt sophomore Drew Roberts, ranked 18th, tacked on a 15-0 tech fall win at 149 pounds, while eighth-ranked sixth-year senior Michael Blockhus scored the second pin of the day for Minnesota at 2:20 of his match at 157.

Redshirt sophomore Blaine Brenner secured a 9-1 major decision at 165 pounds, while the next three matches were all tech falls. Redshirt junior Sam Skillings prevailed 17-0 at 174, No. 6 senior Isaiah Salazar won 15-0 at 184 and No. 19 sixth-year senior Garrett Joles took 197 pounds by an 18-2 score. The last match was not contested as redshirt sophomore Bennett Tabor won via forfeit at heavyweight.

Like Morgan State, the dual against George Mason also began at 125 pounds. McKee recorded his first tech fall of the season with a 22-5 victory with 14 points alone coming in the second period. Eisch then notched his second 18-0 tech fall victory at 133.

VomBaur was in firm control through his dual at 141 and used a last-second escape to pick up an extra point in a 10-2 major decision. At 149, Roberts dominated the final two periods on his way to a 20-8 major decision.

After a decision loss at 157 pounds, the Gophers got back on track at 165 pounds with Brenner. He used 10 points of near fall after a throw-by takedown in the first and ended the 20-3, tech fall victory after just three minutes on the mat.

The wins continued to stack with Skillings picking up a 7-3 decision at 174 pounds followed by Salazar earning an injury default win at 184 pounds just 12 seconds into his match. At 197 pounds Joles once again cruised to a tech fall victory, this time against Ruben Karapetyan. Joles secured the tech fall victory in the second period by a score of 19-4.

The day ended with a narrow loss for Tabor at heavyweight against No. 31 Chad Nix. Each wrestler had an escape but the difference in the match was riding time for Nix, who held on for the 2-1 victory.

Members of the Minnesota wrestling team not on the dual trip are in action tomorrow at the Daktronics Open beginning at 10 a.m., while next Sunday is the team’s home opener against South Dakota State. The opener starts at 12 p.m. and airs on B1G+.

Nov. 18, 2023 | Fairfax, Va. | Recreation Athletic Complex

#14 Minnesota 52, Morgan State 0
125: #7 Patrick McKee pinned Julian Dawson (MSU), 4:10 | 6-0 MINN
133: Jager Eisch tech fall Shawn Ryncarz (MSU), 18-0 | 11-0 MINN
141: #31 Vance VomBaur tech fall Khalid Brinkley (MSU), 18-0 | 16-0 MINN
149: #18 Drew Roberts tech fall Aaron Turner (MSU), 15-0 | 21-0 MINN
157: #8 Michael Blockhus pinned Shay MacIntosh, 2:21 (MSU) | 27-0 MINN
165: Blaine Brenner maj. dec. Jake Marsh (MSU), 9-1 | 31-0 MINN
174: Sam Skillings tech fall Cort Vann (MSU), 17-0 | 36-0 MINN
184: #6 Isaiah Salazar tech fall Kingsley Menifee (MSU), 15-0 | 41-0 MINN
197: #19 Garrett Joles tech fall Cam Johnson (MSU), 18-2 | 46-0 MINN
285: Bennett Tabor win via forfeit | 52-0 MINN

Exhibition Match
141: Ben Lunn pinned Carter Nix (MSU), 1:46

#14 Minnesota 37, George Mason 6
125: #7 Patrick McKee tech fall Ben Monn (GMU), 22-5 | 5-0 MINN
133: Jager Eisch tech fall Patrick Schellpfeffer (GMU), 18-2 | 10-0 MINN
141: #31 Vance VomBaur maj. dec. Dom Hargrove (GMU), 10-2 | 14-0 MINN
149: #18 Drew Roberts maj. dec. Kaden Cassidy (GMI), 20-8 | 18-0 MINN
157: DJ McGee (GMU) dec. #8 Michael Blockhus, 4-2 | 18-3 MINN
165: Blaine Brenner tech fall Evan Maag (GMU), 20-3 | 23-3 MINN
174: Sam Skillings dec. Sean Coughlin (GMU), 7-3 | 26-3 MINN
184: #6 Isaiah Salazar inj. def. Malachi DuVall (GMU), 0:12 | 32-3
197: #19 Garrett Joles tech fall Ruben Karapetyan (GMU), 19-4 | 37-3
285: #31 Chad Nix (GMU) dec. Bennett Tabor, 2-1 | 37-6

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