Four Jackrabbits move into Big 12 semis

TULSA, Okla. — Four South Dakota State wrestlers advanced to Saturday night’s semifinals during the opening session of the 2024 Big 12 Wrestling Championship at BOK Center.

Tanner Sloan, the top seed at 197 pounds, led the Jackrabbits with a pair of pins during the first two rounds Saturday. A senior from Alburnett, Iowa, Sloan stuck Northern Colorado’s Xavier Vasquez in 4 minutes and 40 seconds during opening-round action, then made quick work of Iowa State’s Julian Broderson in the quarterfinals with a win by fall in 1:47.

Sloan, who improved to 21-1 on the season, will face Wyatt Voelker of Northern Iowa in semifinal action that begins at 5 p.m.

Also seeded No. 1 for the Jackrabbits, 174-pounder Cade DeVos wrestled only once after receiving an opening-round bye. DeVos matched up against Brody Conley of West Virginia in the quarterfinals and posted a 4-1 decision to also improve to 21-1 this season.

DeVos will square off against Missouri’s Peyton Mocco, who is seeded fourth, in the semifinals.

Sophomore 157-pounder Cael Swensen also needed only one match to reach the semifinal round. After receiving a first-round bye, Swensen posted a 13-5 major decision over third-seeded Teague Travis of Oklahoma State. The match was tied at 5-all early in the third period before swinging the momentum firmly back in his favor with a takedown and four-point near-fall to build a 12-5 advantage.

Fellow sophomore Derrick Cardinal was the first Jackrabbit to qualify for the semifinals after two victories Saturday morning. The 133-pounder from Forest Lake, Minnesota, posted an 8-3 decision over Kase Mauger of Utah Valley in the opening round before outlasting fifth-seeded Julian Farber in overtime in the quarterfinals. Cardinal and Farber were tied at 1 through regulation before Cardinal came up with the lone takedown of the match in the extra session.

In all, nine of the 10 Jackrabbits entered in the championship event wrestled in the quarterfinal round.

Tanner Jordan (125), Alek Martin (149), Bennett Berge (184) and Luke Rasmussen (285) all won their opening-round matches, but fell in quarterfinal action. Jordan started the day for the Jackrabbits with a second-period pin of North Dakota State’s Ryan Henningson before dropping a 1-0 decision to fifth-seeded Jore Volk of Wyoming, with the lone point awarded to Volk for a two-minute riding-time advantage. Jordan nearly came up with a reversal as the final horn sounded, but the potential match-winning points were waved off and confirmed by video review.

Martin held off California Baptist’s Dayne Morton, 2-1, in a match that was decided in tiebreakers in the opening round. Martin successfully rode out the entire 30 seconds of the first tiebreaker before escaping with a couple seconds remaining in the back half. The sophomore from St. Paris, Ohio, found more offense in his quarterfinal matchup against Jordan Williams of Oklahoma State, but was sent to the wrestlebacks after a 13-8 defeat.

The third-seeded Berge posted a 9-6 decision over Nathan Haas of California Baptist in his first postseason match to set up a tough 184-pound rematch against sixth-seeded Sam Wolf of Air Force. Wolf was able to avenge his loss to Berge in dual action earlier this season, notching a 4-1 decision to place Berge into the consolation bracket.

Rasmussen rallied for 7-5 victory against eighth-seeded Kevin Zimmer of Wyoming in the first round. Trailing 5-2, Rasmussen came up with a takedown and two-point near-fall in the final 45 seconds to move on to face top-seeded Wyatt Hendrickson of Air Force. Hendrickson later pinned Rasmussen in the first period of their quarterfinal matchup.

Two-time All-American Clay Carlson received a first-round bye and faced fourth-seeded Jordan Titus of West Virginia in the quarterfinals. Carlson led for most of the match before Titus closed strong with a late takedown for a 6-5 victory. Carlson will wrestle again in Saturday night’s consolation rounds.

The lone Jackrabbit to be eliminated from contention was 165-pounder Tanner Cook. The senior from Ilion, New York, dropped a 6-3 decision to former teammate Jack Thomsen, who is currently wrestling at Northern Iowa. In consolation action, Cook suffered an injury about a minute into his match against Mateo De La Pena of California Baptist and was forced to withdraw, ending his tournament run.

Saturday’s evening session begins at 5 p.m.

125: #4 Tanner Jordan, Sr., St. Paris, Ohio (1-1 record)

  • def. Ryan Henningson, North Dakota State, by fall 5:26
  • lost to #5 Jore Volk, Wyoming, by dec., 1-0
  • vs. Yusief Lillie, Utah Valley

133: #4 Derrick Cardinal, So., Forest Lake, Minnesota (2-0 record)

  • def. Kase Mauger, Utah Valley, by dec., 8-3
  • def. #5 Julian Farber, Northern Iowa, by dec., 4-1 [SV-1]
  • vs. #1 Daton Fix, Oklahoma State

141: #5 Clay Carlson, Sr., Willmar, Minnesota (0-1 record)

  • First-round bye
  • lost to #4 Jordan Titus, West Virginia, by dec., 6-5
  • vs. Rudy Lopez, Northern Colorado

149: #5 Alek Martin, So., St. Paris, Ohio (1-1 record)

  • def. Dayne Morton, California Baptist, by dec., 2-1 [TB-1]
  • lost to #4 Jordan Williams, Oklahoma State, by dec., 13-8
  • vs. Joe Fernau, Air Force

157: #6 Cael Swensen, So., Plymouth, Minnesota (1-0 record)

  • First-round bye
  • def. #3 Teague Travis, Oklahoma State, by major dec., 13-5
  • vs. #2 Ryder Downey, Northern Iowa

165: #7 Tanner Cook, Sr., Ilion, New York (0-2 record)

  • lost to Jack Thomsen, Northern Iowa, by dec., 6-3
  • lost to Mateo De La Pena, California Baptist, by injury default 1:05
    Cook Eliminated

174: #1 Cade DeVos, Sr., Altoona, Iowa (1-0 record)

  • First-round bye
  • def. #8 Brody Conley, West Virginia, by dec., 4-1
  • vs. #4 Peyton Mocco, Missouri

184: #3 Bennett Berge, R-Fr., Mantorville, Minnesota (1-1 record)

  • def. Nathan Haas, California Baptist, by dec., 9-6
  • lost to #6 Sam Wolf, Air Force, by dec., 4-1
  • vs. Adam Cherne, North Dakota State

197: #1 Tanner Sloan, Sr., Alburnett, Iowa (2-0 record)

  • def. Xavier Vaszquez, Northern Colorado, by fall 4:40
  • def. Julian Broderson, Iowa State, by fall 1:47
  • vs. #5 Wyatt Voelker, Northern Iowa

285: Luke Rasmussen, R-Fr., Brookings, South Dakota (1-1 record)

  • def. #8 Kevin Zimmer, Wyoming, by dec., 7-5
  • lost to #1 Wyatt Hendrickson, Air Force, by fall 1:45
  • vs. Xavier Doolin, Northern Colorado


  1. Iowa State – 71.0
  2. Oklahoma State – 67.5
  3. Missouri – 58.0
  4. Northern Iowa – 45.0
  5. South Dakota State – 43.0
  6. West Virginia – 38.0
  7. Oklahoma – 29.0
  8. Wyoming – 23.0
  9. Air Force – 22.5
  10. North Dakota State – 17.5
  11. Northern Colorado – 11.5
  12. California Baptist – 4.5
  13. Utah Valley – 3.0

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