Randy Baker named Minnesota West Head Wrestling Coach

Few can even imagine, let alone replicate, all the accolades that Randy Baker has compiled both as a wrestler and as a wrestling coach.

Now Baker brings all that knowledge and experience to the Minnesota West Bluejay Wrestling room.

On Thursday (5/23) Randy Baker was introduced as the new head coach of the Bluejay wrestling program.

A long-time high school wrestling coach in Southwest Minnesota, Baker helped lead the wrestling programs of the Lakefield Panthers, Heron Lake-Okabena-Lakefield Silver Bullets, Heron Lake-Okabena-Lakefield/Jackson Jaguars and the Jackson County Central Huskies to 510 dual meet victories in 34 years as head coach (1984 to 2018) He has coached 39 individual state champion wrestlers (2nd all-time in Minnesota), 93 state place winners (3rd all-time in Minnesota) and has lead his teams to 7 State team championships and 14 won region/section team championships. Continue reading at www.kwoa.com

Brayton Lee Finishes Redshirt Season With Junior World Team

Brayton Lee just won’t give up. Whether he’s down in a match or facing a foe he’s lost to several times, Lee faces the challenge with confidence.

This past weekend at the 2019 UWW Junior Team Trials, Lee displayed that grit for the whole wrestling world to see. In his final three bouts in the bracket, Lee rallied in the second period. Against Sammy Sasso in a best-of-three series, who he had lost to earlier this May, Lee rallied to take down the Buckeye and show off his amazing conditioning.

“I just kept pressuring and keeping good position like the coaches were telling me,” Lee said. “Something Coach Eggum always talks about is wrestling every position, making them work, and staying aggressive the whole time.”

Lee finished his redshirt campaign in the Maroon and Gold with a 26-7 record with eight technical falls. The Brownsburg, Indiana, native won the National Collegiate Open and was runner-up at the Edinboro Open as well as the recent UWW Junior Nationals in Las Vegas. Both times against Sasso.

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Gophers Announce Addition of Nathan Fuller

Nathan Fuller, a 2019 Wisconsin State Champion at 152-pounds, has signed his National Letter of Intent and is the latest part of the Gophers incoming 2019 recruiting class.

Fuller, named Outstanding Wrestler of the tournament, was the first state champion from River Falls High School since Gophers assistant coach Trevor Brandvold won it all in 2006.

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Gophers Excel At 2019 World Team Trials

The Gophers finished the 2019 World Team Trials with four qualifiers for spots on the USA Wrestling World Teams: Gable Steveson, Tony Nelson, Brayton Lee, and Pat Smith.

In senior men’s freestyle, Gable Steveson and for Gophers heavyweight Tony Nelson finished first and second respectively to be at least alternates on the team.

Steveson advances to a best-of-three series against Nick Gwiazdowski at Final X:Rutgers on June 8 with the 125kg starting spot at stake. Dustin Schlatter was the last Gophers grappler to represent the USA in Freestyle when he made the 2009 team while still in college.

The 18-year old was the youngest competitor in the field but ran through the weight class outscoring opponents 43-8 in five matches. Steveson defeated Nelson in the bracket finals before avenging a 2018 US Open loss to Adam Coon with two consecutive dominant victories.

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Sloan earns spot on world team

RALEIGH, N.C. – South Dakota State University wrestler Tanner Sloan will represent the United States in international competition later this summer after winning the 97-kilogram division at the UWW Junior Freestyle World Team Trials over the weekend.

A native of Alburnett, Iowa, and a member of the Jackrabbit Wrestling Club, Sloan posted a 4-0 record over two days. Seeded first in the bracketed portion of the event, Sloan received a first-round bye before defeating Jake Boyd, 13-2, in the semifinals and Kyle Lightner of the Scarlet Knights Wrestling Club, 11-0, in Friday’s championship bout. Boyd competed unattached.

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