Minnesota State 26, Southwest Minnesota State 18

Minnesota State Downs #24 Southwest Minnesota State 26-18

Mankato, Minn. – The Mavericks went to work this afternoon in Bresnan Arena in their second conference dual against a ranked opponent, getting a 26-18 win over #24 Southwest Minnesota State.

With the win, MSU wrestling head coach Jim Makovsky also earned his 300th career win at Minnesota State, making him the all-time most-winningest coach in MSU wrestling history, passing the legendary former head coach Rummy Macias.

Freshman Kole Marko, at 165 lbs., started the afternoon off strong for MSU against SMSU’s Lucas Hodges. After a slow first period, Marko gained a substantial lead after a takedown and a five-point nearfall in the second period. Marko ended the match with an 11-1 major decision, putting the Mavericks on the board. Following in Marko’s footsteps was junior Mike Smith, of MSU, at 174 lbs., up against Elijah Sterner, of SMSU. Smith had a quick takedown at four seconds into the first period, followed by another takedown and two nearfalls. Winning by a 13-1 major decision, Smith brought the MSU team total to 8-0.

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Mustangs travel to Mankato for first NSIC road dual

MARSHALL, Minn. – The Southwest Minnesota State wrestling team hits the road, traveling for a dual meet at Minnesota State on Saturday, Jan. 14 at 4 p.m.

Mustangs In The Rankings: SMSU has one wrestler ranked in the NWCA rankings (Dec. 23). Caden Steffen ranks second at 184 pounds. Steffen is 15-1 on the season and 2-0 in duals. Steffen was named NSIC Wrestler of the Week for the second time this season after placing first at the Midwest Classic. Steffen picked up victories over three of the NWCA top 10 at the Midwest Classic, No. 9 Cole Houser, No. 6 Daniel Beemer and No.4 Anthony Des Vigne. His only loss this season was a 3-2 decision to Billy Higgins, who is currently ranked first at 184 pounds. … SMSU has also been recognized for its team success, as the NWCA ranks them at No. 24.

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NWCA NCAA DII Rankings – December 23, 2022

MANHEIM, PA – For the third time in as many rankings, there is a new team atop NCAA Division II wrestling. The Central Oklahoma Bronchos took the top spot in decisive fashion, jumping into the top spot with more than 30 points separating them from the No. 2 Nebraska-Kearney Lopers.

The Bronchos, who were last in the top spot in the rankings on Feb. 18, 2022, amassed 114 total team points behind ten ranked wrestlers. Six of those ten wrestlers are in the top five individually, led by returning National Champion Dalton Abney atop the 197 rankings, while three more from UCO are ranked No. 2: Dylan Lucas at 133, Gabe Johnson at 157, and Shawn Streck at 285.

Nebraska-Kearney held its second-place ranking with 83 points after opening the season at No. 1. Last ranking’s No. 1, St. Cloud State, came in third place this ranking with 75 points, while West Liberty (60 pts.) and Lander (51 points) round out the top five.

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Steffen named NSIC Wrestler of the Week

BURNSVILLE, Minn. — Southwest Minnesota State University’s Caden Steffen has been named Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Wrestler of the Week for the second time this season. The announcement came from the league office in Burnsville, Minn., on Monday morning.

Steffen, a native of Zumbrota, Minn., went 5-0 this weekend, placing first at the Midwest Classic at 184 pounds. Steffen started his weekend with a fall (6:34) victory in the first round. He followed that with a technical fall (6:55, 18-3). In the quarterfinals, Steffen was matched up against No. 13 Cole Houser, and he defeated Houser by a 5-2 decision. Then, in the semifinals, Steffen defeated No. 7 Daniel Beemer by an 8-4 decision. In the finals, Steffen faced 15-1 Anthony Des Vigne, who Steffen defeated by a 3-2 decision to place first. Steffen is currently ranked No. 2 in the NWCA rankings at 184 pounds.

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