Four Olympians, Nine 2021 World Team Members Reach Greco-Roman Semifinals At World Team Trials Challenge Tournament

Minnesota wrestlers Pat Smith, Ryan Epps, and Christian Dulaney are in the Greco semifinals

CORALVILLE, Iowa — The first session of the 2022 World Team Trials Challenge Tournament showcased on Saturday featured Greco-Roman wrestlers who are attempting to qualify for Final X New York or Final X Stillwater.

Past Olympians Ildar Hafizov (55 kg), Jesse Thielke (63 kg), Alejandro Sancho (67 kg), Ben Provisor (82 kg) advanced to the semifinals.

Hafizov pinned Phillip Moomey in 51 seconds in his quarterfinals match. Thielke also had a quarterfinal pin over Logan Savvy in 1:28. Sancho won by a 9-0 technical fall over We Rachel. Provisor had a bye this session.

Members of the 2021 World Team qualified for the semifinals also, including Max Nowry (55 kg), Dalton Roberts (60 kg), Sammy Jones (63 kg), Peyton Omania (67 kg), Patrick Smith (72 kg), Jesse Porter (77 kg), Provisor, Alan Vera (87 kg), and Cohlton Schultz (130 kg). Continue reading at →

Carlson, Franek, Bishop, Rathman, Turriff, Vos, and Shilson named to CoSIDA Academic All-District Team

Seven area wrestlers were named to the 2021-22 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District® Men’s At-Large Team, selected by College Sports Information Directors. CoSIDA Academic Teams recognize the nation’s top student-athletes for their combined performances in athletic competition and in the classroom.

Clay Carlson of South Dakota State, Jared Franek of North Dakota State, Daniel Bishop of Augustana, Kyle Rathman of Minnesota State, Trevor Turriff of Minnesota State
Garrett Vos of St. Cloud State, and Tyler Shilson of Augsburg have been selected as Academic All-District® honorees.

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Junior Schalles winner Rogotzke learned to pin at an early age

By Mike Finn

Ryder Rogotzke said he first saw himself as a pinner about the same time his father, Perry, first introduced the sport to this current high school junior from Stillwater Area High School in Minnesota.

“The one quote he built into my head was: ‘Send a message,’” said Rogotzke, who captured the 182-pound state championship this year by recording a state-record 44th pin in the state final. “Well, the best way to send a message for me has been to pin everyone.”

And that’s about what the future Naval Academy wrestler accomplished this past winter in a season that saw him also win a Super 32 championship last October and go 56-1. Ten of those victories came via a forfeit and only two of his victims lasted an entire match against Rogotzke, who learned to overcome any new defense used by his opponents, aware of his pinning reputation. Continue reading at →

Steffen earns No. 8 seed for World Team Trials Challenge

MARSHALL, Minn. – USA Wrestling has announced the seeds for this weekend’s freestyle competition at the World Team Trials Challenge with current Southwest Minnesota State University wrestler Caden Steffen earning the No. 8 seed at 86 kilograms.

The tournament will take place on Saturday and Sunday inside Xtream Arena in Coralville, Iowa, with FloWrestling hosting all tournament coverage throughout the weekend.

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As fans return to college wrestling venues, Iowa sets new Division I home average attendance record

New Brighton, Minnesota – The National Wrestling Media Association released its annual numbers for Division I wrestling dual meet attendance on Friday.

The COVID-19 global pandemic caused sports around the world to be forever impacted. For college wrestling in the United States, this created a system of uncertainty when it came time to return to campus to watch events in person. Even with each school seemingly having its own set of regulations and stipulations, the 2021-22 attendance numbers came back favorably as wrestling fans were in large, quick to return to their favorite venues. Attendance wasn’t tracked in 2020-21 due to most venues having no-spectator policies during that season.

The University of Iowa’s fanbase, leaders in Division I attendance since 2007, set a new record for home average of 14,905, selling out the entire season at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City. The Hawkeyes drew a total of 89,430, the second-highest home total since attendance figures started being tracked by members of the wrestling media in 2002. The numbers are based on home dual meet events, such as single duals, double duals, tri-meets or quad-meets.

In 2015-16, Iowa drew a record 97,325 fans, which was aided by the 42,287 at Kinnick Stadium in November of 2015 against Oklahoma State. Iowa has led the nation in home attendance in 19 of the 20 seasons it’s been tracked.

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Pair of Former Gophers Prepped for Greco World Team Trials

Pat Smith and Alec Ortiz receive their seeds as they look to punch their tickets to Final X

MINNEAPOLIS – Another round of pre-seeds has been released by USA Wrestling for this weekend’s World Team Trials Challenge, as a pair of former Gophers, Pat Smith and Alec Ortiz, have received their seeds for Greco-Roman competition this weekend.

The tournament will take place from May 21-22 inside Xtream Arena in Coralville, Iowa, as FloWrestling will host all tournament coverage throughout the weekend.

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Blockhus, Webster Earn Seeds for World Team Trials Challenge

MINNEAPOLIS – USA Wrestling has announced the seeds for freestyle competition at the World Team Trials challenge, as current Gopher wrestler Michael Blockhus and Minnesota alumni Owen Webster will both have a number next to their name when competition gets underway this weekend.

The tournament will take place from May 21-22 inside Xtream Arena in Coralville, Iowa, as FloWrestling will host all tournament coverage throughout the weekend.

Michael Blockhus will enter the tournament as the No. 6-seed at 70 kilograms following a solid performance at the U.S Open three weeks ago, which saw him place fourth in Las Vegas with a 6-2 record on the weekend. This weekend he will look to punch his ticket for one of the two vacant Final X spots as he competes among the likes of Alec Pantaleo, Ryan Deakin, Jordan Oliver, and Zain Retherford, among others.

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