St. Cloud State Ranked #2 in the Nation

Jacob Kahnke Earns #1 Ranking at 285-pounds

The St. Cloud State University wrestling team (7-0) maintained its second place ranking in the latest NCAA Division II Coaches poll, which was released on Jan. 4.  The Huskies posted 153 points in the poll and also gained one first place vote in the poll.

Nebraska-Omaha stayed atop the poll with 159 points and also had eight first place votes.  Augustana (S.D.) remained third with 140 points, followed by Western State (Colo.) and Newberry (S.C.).  Rounding out the top 10 is Pittsburgh-Johnstown (Pa.), Minnesota State, Nebraska-Kearney, Central Oklahoma and Grand Canyon (Ariz.).

Individually, St. Cloud State sophomore Jacob Kahnke earned a first place ranking for the first time this season at 285-pounds.  In the previous poll, Kahnke was ranked #2 in the poll and this marks the first time this season that a Husky has gained top honors in the Division II poll.

At 141-pounds, senior Gabe Suarez was ranked 7th in the nation, while senior John Sundgren earned a #6 ranking at 157-pounds for the Huskies.  At 165-pounds, junior Tad Merritt remained at the #2 spot in the poll this week, while NSIC Wrestler of the Week sophomore Shamus O’Grady was ranked #6 in the poll at 174-pounds.  At 184-pounds, Mic Berg joined the poll for the first time this season with a 5th place ranking.

Sixteen teams (including SCSU) will compete in the NWCA Division II National Duals, which open Saturday morning and run through Sunday afternoon at the UNI Dome on the Northern Iowa campus.  Joining Nebraska-Omaha in the field  will be No. 2 St. Cloud, No. 3 Augustana, No. 4 Western State, No. 5 Newberry, No. 7 Minnesota State, No. 9 Central Oklahoma, No. 10 Grand Canyon, No. 11 Upper Iowa, No. 12 Wisconsin-Parkside, No. 13 North Carolina-Pembroke, No. 14 Findlay and No. 20 San Francisco State along with Central Missouri, Limestone (S.C.) and Minnesota State-Moorhead.

The top 20 poll, with points and the teams’ last ranking following by the top-eight rankings at each weight:

Rank        School (State)    Points      Last Rankin
1.    Nebraska-Omaha          159         1st
2.    St. Cloud State         153         2nd
3.    Augustana (S.D.)       140         3rd
4.    Western State (Colo.)   131         4th
5.    Newberry (S.C.)         129         5th
6.    Pittsburgh-Johnstown    106         9th
7.    Minnesota State         105         6th
8.    Nebraska-Kearney       100         8th
9.    Central Oklahoma       99          12th
10.   Grand Canyon (Ariz.)    97          11th
11.   Upper Iowa             88          10th
12.   Wisconsin-Parkside      70          13th
13.   North Carolina-Pembroke 64          20th
14.   Findlay (Ohio)          61          7th
T15.  West Liberty (W. Va.)   43          14th
T15.  Fort Hays State (Kan.) 43          15th
17.   Adams State (Colo.)     29          16th
18.   Ashland (Ohio)          27          17th
19.   East Stroudsburg (Pa.)  14          18th
20.   San Francisco State     10          19th

Others receiving votes: Belmont Abbey (N.C.), Colorado State-Pueblo, Gannon (Pa.), Minnesota State-Moorhead, Southwest Minnesota.

NCAA Division II Individual Rankings

125 Pounds
1.    Andy Forstner, Minnesota State
2.    Russell Weakley, North Carolina-Pembroke
3.    Trevor Franklin, Upper Iowa
4.    Alex Meger, Augustana (S.D.)
5.    Josh Smith, Nebraska-Kearney
6.    Connor McDonald, Newberry (S.C.)
7.    Alex Johns, Indianapolis (Ind.)
8.    Ben Sergent, Findlay (Ohio)

133 Pounds
1.    Kyle Pedretti, Upper Iowa
2.    Todd Wilcox, Grand Canyon (Ariz.)
3.    Ryan Link, Pittsburgh-Johnstown
4.    Aldon Isenberg, Fort Hays State (Kan.)
5.    B.J. Young, Newberry (S.C.)
6.    Michael Magaha, Limestone (S.C.)
7.    Cody Gillenwater, Central Missouri
8.    Trison Graham, Central Oklahoma

141 Pounds
1.    Jay Sherer, Augustana (S.D.)
2.    Mario Morgan, Nebraska-Omaha
3.    Andre Harrison, Fort Hays State (Kan.)
4.    Dalton Jensen, Nebraska-Kearney
5.    Naveed Bagheri, San Francisco State (Calif.)
6.    Jimmy Savala, Chadron State (Neb.)
7.    Gabe Suarez, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
8.    Deral Brown, Newberry (S.C.)

149 Pounds
1.    Esai Dominguez, Nebraska-Omaha
2.    T.J. Hepburn, Nebraska-Kearney
3.    Nate Herda, Augustana (S.D.)
4.    Jeremy Espinoza, Findlay (Ohio)
5.    Dale Debacco, Newberry (S.C.)
6.    Josh Hensley, Adams State (Colo.)
7.    Mitchell Means, Fort Hays State (Kan.)
8.    Jesse Snider, Colorado Mines

157 Pounds
1.    George Ivanov, Nebraska-Omaha
2.    Marcus Edgington, Augustana (S.D.)
3.    Dillon Bera, Wisconsin-Parkside
4.    Seth Phalen, West Liberty (W.Va.)
5.    Sean Byrnes, Newberry (S.C.)
6.    John Sundgren, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
7.    Cory Dauphin, Central Oklahoma
8.    Justin Morris, Western State (Colo.)

165 Pounds
1.    Josh Shields, Mercyhurst (Pa.)
2.    Tad Merritt, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
3.    Jake Varilek, Belmont Abbey (N.C.)
4.    Derrick Adkins, Central Oklahoma
5.    Joey Wilson, Nebraska-Kearney
6.    Matt Gille, Wisconsin-Parkside
7.    Gavin Nelson, Augustana (S.D.)
8.    Justin Grant, Colorado State-Pueblo

174 Pounds
1.    Luke Rynish, Wisconsin-Parkside
2.    Anthony Petrella, Gannon (Pa.)
3.    Ryan Pankoke, Nebraska-Omaha
4.    Victor Carazo, Grand Canyon (Ariz.)
5.    Tim Darling, Kutztown (Pa.)
6.    Shamus O’Grady, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
7.    Ben Becker, Minnesota State
8.    Mason True, Findlay (Ohio)

184 Pounds
1.    Bryant Blanton, Newberry (S.C.)
2.    Charlie Pipher, Western State (Colo.)
3.    Aaron Norgren, Minnesota State
4.    Aaron Denson, Nebraska-Omaha
5.    Mic Berg, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
6.    Brady Anderson, Mary (N.D.)
7.    Ryan Becerra, Grand Canyon (Ariz.)
8.    Tanner Keck, Central Oklahoma

197 Pounds
1.    Donovan McMahill, Western State (Colo.)
2.    Ty Copsey, Augustana (S.D.)
3.    Mitch Knapp, West Liberty (W.Va.)
4.    Luke McPeek, Adams State (Colo.)
5.    Jarrett Edison, Central Oklahoma
6.    Carl Broghammer, Upper Iowa
7.    Frank Morgan, King (Tenn.)
8.    Daniel Stevenson, Findlay (Ohio)

285 Pounds
1.    Jacob Kahnke, St. Cloud State (Minn.)
2.    Charlie Alexander, Western State (Colo.)
3.    Ben Hohensee, Nebraska-Kearney
4.    Matt Meuleners, Northern State (S.D.)
5.    Taylor Escamilla, Nebraska-Omaha
6.    J.D. Ramsey, West Liberty (W.Va.)
7.    Chris Dempsey, Pittsburgh-Johnstown (Pa.)
8.    Brian Rodas, Southwest Minnesota

#2 St. Cloud State Headed to 2011 NWCA Dual Tournament on Jan. 8-9

O’Grady Named NSIC W.O.W./Kahnke Ranked #1 in Nation!

SCSU Update

  • #2 St. Cloud State University (7-0) will travel to the 2011 NWCA Division II Duals in Cedar Falls, Iowa on Jan. 8-9. The tournament will be hosted by the University of Northern Iowa and it will feature the nation’s top DII wrestling programs, including: Augustana, Central Oklahoma, Central Missouri, Findlay, Grand Canyon Univ, Limestone, MSU- Mankato, MSU-Moorhead, Newberry, San Francisco St, St. Could State, UNC – Pembroke, Nebraska Omaha, UW – Parkside, Upper Iowa and Western State.
  • The Huskies were ranked #2 in the latest DII Coaches’ Poll behind Nebraska Omaha. Here is a rundown of SCSU’s nationally ranked wrestlers in 2010-11: Gabe Suarez (#7 at 141-pounds), John Sundgren (#6 at 157-pounds), Tad Merritt (#2 at 165-pounds), Shamus O’Grady (#6 at 174-pounds), Mic Berg (#5 at 184-pounds) and Jake Kahnke (#1 at 285-pounds). The poll was released on Jan. 4.
  • Shamus O’Grady became the 3rd SCSU wrestler to earn NSIC Wrestler of the Week notice in 2010-11. On Jan. 3, O’Grady was named the NSIC Wrestler of the Week for his 4-0 record at the Grand Canyon Duals. O’Grady had two falls, a technical fall and a forfeit win at the tournament. He now owns a 15-2 record and is ranked #5 in the latest DII poll at 174.
  • #2 ranked Tad Merritt went 4-0 at the GC Duals. A highlight for Merritt was a 6-4 win over #4 ranked Joey Wilson of UN-Kearney. In the same dual match, #2 Jake Kahnke added a 6-1 win over #4 ranked Ben Hohnesee of UNK. Kahnke was 3-0 at the GC Duals this year. Kahnke is now 12-1 on the season, while Merritt owns a 19-2 record this winter.
  • At 125-pounds, Zach Stewart was 4-0 in action at the GC Duals. Stewart is 11-2 this season for the Huskies. #6 John Sundgren was 2-0 at 157-pounds at the GC Duals, while Jacob D. Horn added a pair of wins at 157-pounds for SCSU in Phoenix. Of note, these were the first two matches of the season for Sundgren.
  • At the GC Duals, the Huskies were impressive with a 34-9 win over Chadron State, a 37-6 win over Mesa State and a 52-0 win over Kutztown. SCSU also gained a 26-9 win over #8 Nebraska-Kearney. The 52 points scored vs. Kutztown is just two points off of the team record of 54 points in a dual, which was set in a 54-0 win over Southwest Minnesota State in 1976-77.
  • The St. Cloud State University wrestling team (14-7, 5-2 NSIC/3rd) captured 7th place at the 2010 NCAA Division II wrestling championships on March 12-13, in Omaha, Neb. This marks the Huskies best NCAA finish since capturing 7th place in 1983. This also marked the best finish for the Huskies at the NCAA tournament since Steve Costanzo took over as head coach in 2006-07. This marked the 8th time since 1975 that SCSU has charted a top-10 place at the NCAA championships. The 7th place finish is the best ever for the Huskies at the NCAA DII level. SCSU placed eighth at the nationals in 2009, 1986 and 1976. SCSU also placed third at nationals during the 1963 and 1965 seasons as an NAIA affiliate.
  • The Huskies qualified 8 wrestlers for the NCAA championships in 2010. SCSU wrestlers earning All-America status at the meet were Jacob Kahnke (4th place at 285), Tad Merritt (5th place at 165), Shamus O’Grady (6th place at 174) and Gabe Suarez (8th place at 141). This marked the first All-America finish for Kahnke, O’Grady and Suarez, while Merritt is now a two-time All-America award winner for the Huskies. The four All-Americans ties a team record for the Huskies, as SCSU also brought home four NCAA All-America honors in 1983 and 1975.
  • The Huskies will have two major targets on the wrestling room wall this season. First up is the 2011 NCAA Regional championships on Feb. 27 in Sioux Falls, S.D. This tournament serves as a qualifier for the other big date – March 11-12, which is the 2011 NCAA DII championships in Kearney, Neb.

St. Cloud State’s O’Grady Earns NSIC Wrestler of the Week Award

St. Cloud State University sophomore Shamus O’Grady (Coon Rapids) was named as the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference wrestler of the week on Jan. 3.  O’Grady earned the award thanks to his 4-0 record at the Grand Canyon Duals on Jan. 1 in Phoenix, Ariz.

Shamus O'GradyO’Grady helped guide the #2 ranked Huskies to a perfect 4-0 record at the Grand Canyon Duals, which included wins over Chadron State, Mesa State, #8 Nebraska-Kearney and Kutztown.

O’Grady was 4-0 on the day, which included two pins, one win by a technical fall and one win by a forfeit. O’Grady now owns a 15-2 record this winter. O’Grady pinned Trent Zempel of Chadron State at 4:55; he then won by tech fall over Zak Slotten of Mesa State 20-3; he followed that up with a pin over Drew Comito of #8 Nebraska-Kearney at 1:49 and then won by forfeit in the dual against Kutztown.

This marks the third time this season that a St. Cloud State University wrestler has gained NSIC Wrestler of the Week honors.

The Huskies (7-0) will return to action on Jan. 8-9 with a  trip to the NWCA Division II National Duals in Cedar Falls, Iowa.  This elite meet will pit the Huskies against the nation’s top NCAA Division II teams in a dual tournament format.  Teams slated to participate in the 2011 tournament are Augustana, Central Oklahoma, Central Missouri, Findlay, Grand Canyon Univ,  Limestone, MSU- Mankato, MSU-Moorhead, Newberry, San Fancisco St, St. Could State, UNC – Pembroke, Nebraska Omaha, UW – Parkside, Upper Iowa and Western State.

Huskies Collect Four Wins at GCU Duals

The #2 ranked St. Cloud State University wrestling team improved to 7-0 on the 2010-11 season with four victories at the Grand Canyon Duals on Jan. 1. The matches were hosted by Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Ariz.

SCSU opened the day with a 34-9 victory over Chadron State. At 125-pound Zach Stewart collected a forfeit win for the Huskies, before CSC stormed back with a pair of wins at 133-pounds and 141-pounds to tie the match at 6-6.

At 149-pounds, Jacob R. Horn racked up a pin at 1:20 to make it 12-6 and then Jake D. Horn charted an 8-1 decision win at 157-pounds. #2 Tad Merritt scored an injury forfeit win at 165-pounds and #5 Shamus O’Grady gained a fall at 174-pounds for the Huskies to make the tally 27-6. The Huskies iced the match with a win by #8 Lucas Munkelwitz at 197-pounds and a major decision by #2 Jake Kahnke at 285-pounds.

In the second match of the day, SCSU posted a 37-6 victory over Mesa State. The lone setback for the Huskies in the dual match was at 197-pounds. SCSU’s Stewart (125-pounds), Westy Hanson (133-pounds), #3 Gabe Suarez (141-pounds), Jacob D. Horn (149-pounds), O’Grady (174-pounds/wins by a tech fall), Mic Berg (184-pounds) and Chris Brassell (285-pounds) all earned decision victories in the match. #6 John Sundgren (157-pounds) and Merritt (165-pounds) each gained pins in the dual win for SCSU.

In the third match of the day for SCSU, the Huskies scored a big 26-9 victory over #8 ranked Nebraska Kearney. Stewart posted a decision win at 125-pounds, followed by a major decision victory by Eric Ellington at 133-pounds for the Huskies. At 157-pounds, Sundgren posted a 5-0 decision to give SCSU a 10-6 edge in the match.

At 165-pounds, Merritt posted a huge 6-4 decision over #4 ranked Joey Wilson of UNK. O’Grady helped the Huskies’ cause with a big pin fall at 174-pounds and Munkelwitz gained a major decision victory at 197-pounds. The match was completed by a 6-1 decision at 285-pounds by SCSU’s Kahnke over #4 ranked Ben Hohensee of UNK.

In the final match of the event, the Huskies scored a 52-0 shutout win over Kutztown State. SCSU took advantage of forfeits by Kutztown at 133-pounds, 174-pounds and 184-pounds to gain an 18-0 lead in the match. Suarez (141-pounds), Merritt (165-pounds), Munkelwitz (197-pounds) and Kahnke (285-pounds) all earned pins in the match, while Stewart (125), Jacob R. Horn (149) and Jacob D. Horn (157) all posted decision wins for SCSU.

Of note, the 52 points in a dual match for SCSU is just two points shy of the team record. The Huskies’ team record for most points in a dual match is 54, which was hit against Southwest Minnesota State in 1976-77.

On Jan. 8-9, the Huskies will return to action with a trip to the prestigious NWCA Division II National Duals in Cedar Falls, Iowa. SCSU will square off against the nation’s top DII programs in an exciting dual match tournament format.

Grand Canyon Duals – Complete Results –

St. Cloud State dual match results from the GCU Duals on Jan. 1:

St. Cloud State 34, Chadron State 9
125- Zach Stewart (SCSU) wins by forfeit
133- Dustin Stodola (CSC) def. Westy Hanson (SCSU) 3-2
141 – #5 Jimmy Savala (CSC) def. #3 Gabe Suarez (SCSU) 7-1
149 – Jacob R. Horn (SCSU) def. Jake Lords (CSC) fall 1:20
157 – Jacob D. Horn (SCSU) def. Mikah Kadera (CSC) 8-1
165 – #2 Tad Merritt (SCSU) def. Briston Benton (CSC) forfeit injury
174 – #5 Shamus O’Grady (SCSU) fall Trent Zempel (CSC) fall 4:55
184 – Jordan DeBus (CSC) def. Mic Berg (SCSU) 11-5
197- #8 Lucas Munkelwitz (SCSU) def. Chris Leak (CSC) 3-1
285 – #2 Jake Kahnke (SCSU) def. RJ Boylan (CSC) major dec.8-0

St. Cloud State 37, Mesa State 6
125- Zach Stewart (SCSU) def. Clay Foyt (MSC) major dec. 9-0
133- Westy Hanson (SCSU) def. Tyler Nelson (MSC) 4-2
141 – #3 Gabe Suarez (SCSU) def. Rhett Breed (MSC) 13-9
149 – Jacob R. Horn (SCSU) def. Pat Lehnan (MSC) maj. dec.11-3
157 – #6 John Sundgren (SCSU) fall John Gappmaier (MSC) 3:29
165 – #2 Tad Merritt (SCSU) fall Dylan Grananrd (MSC) :45
174 – #5 Shamus O’Grady (SCSU) tech fall Zak Slotten (MSC) tech fall 20-3
184 – Mic Berg (SCSU) def. Kyle Brightman (MSC) 6-5
197- Shane Miller (MSC) fall #8 Lucas Munkelwitz (SCSU) 1:57
285 – Chris Brassell (SCSU) def. Trevor Stapp (MSC) 8-7

St. Cloud State 26, Nebraska Kearney 9
125- Zach Stewart (SCSU) def. Jordan White (UNK) 8-1
133- Eric Ellingston (SCSU) def. Alec Chanthapatheth (UNK) maj dec. 15-5
141 – Dalton Jensen (UNK) def. #3 Gabe Suarez (SCSU) 7-3
149 – TJ Hepburn (UNK) def. Jacob R. Horn (SCSU) 7-2
157 – #6 John Sundgren def. Islam Abitov (UNK) 5-0
165 – #2 Tad Merritt (SCSU) def. #4 Joey Wilson (UNK) 6-4
174 – #5 Shamus O’Grady (SCSU) fall Drew Comito (UNK) 1:49
184 – Ross Brunkhardt (UNK) def. Mic Berg (SCSU) 7-3
197- #8 Lucas Munkelwitz (SCSU) def. Mike Swanson (UNK) maj dec. 12-2
285 – #2 Jake Kahnke (SCSU) def. #4 Ben Hohnesee (UNK) 6-1

St. Cloud State 52, Kutztown 0
125- Zach Stewart (SCSU) def. Desmond Moore (KU) 7-1
133- Eric Ellingston (SCSU) wins by forfeit
141 – #3 Gabe Suarez (SCSU) fall Oliver Thayer (KU) 4:26
149 – Jacob R. Horn (SCSU) def. Tony Frost (KU) 4-2
157 – Jacob D. Horn (SCSU) def. Jay Sandt (KU) maj. dec. 19-6
165 – #2 Tad Merritt (SCSU) fall Eric Sergent (KU) 2:42
174 – #5 Shamus O’Grady (SCSU) wins by forfeit
184 – Mic Berg (SCSU) wins by forfeit
197- #8 Lucas Munkelwitz (SCSU) fall Victor Montanez (KU) 2:31
285 – #2 Jake Kahnke (SCSU) fall Greg Tate (KU) 2:20

Grand Canyon Duals

Round 1

St. Cloud State 34 Chadron State 9

Newberry 42 Mesa State -1

Nebraska Kearney 24 Kutztown 12

Round 2

Grand Canyon 28 Kutztown 9

St. Cloud State 37 Mesa State 6

Newberry 29 Chadron State 15

Round 3

Grand Canyon 29 Chadron State 12

Nebraska Kearney 20 Newberry 17

Mesa State 19 Kutztown 16

Round 4

Newberry 24 Grand Canyon 12

Kutztown 23 Chadron State 22

St. Cloud State 26 Nebraska Kearney 9

Round 5

Grand Canyon 27 Nebraska Kearney 20

St. Cloud State 52 Kutztown 0

Grand Canyon Duals Complete Results (PDF)

Auggie-Brute-Adidas Open

MINNEAPOLIS — The defending NCAA Division III national champion Augsburg College wrestling team opened its season with a strong performance at its Auggie-Brute-Adidas Open on Saturday at Si Melby Hall, with four individual champions and 23 individual placewinners in the event. The Auggie-Brute-Adidas Open featured more than 500 wrestlers from throughout the Midwest in competition.“Saturday’s tournament was a great test for every member of our wrestling team,” said Augsburg head coach Mark Matzek. “The coaching staff is very happy with the effort put forth. This competition revealed individual strengths as well as weaknesses, which is why we compete.”Defending 149-pound national runner-up Tony Valek (JR, Belle Plaine, Minn./Scott West) opened his season with an impressive championship in the 149 Gold division, winning four matches, including one pin, a major decision and a third-period technical fall in the championship match. Valek was rated second nationally at 149 in the preseason Division III national rankings.

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