WRESTLING


2/23/2015, 12:00am

Gophers fall in NWCA quarterfinals

It was supposed to be a run for a fourth-consecutive NWCA title. But the No. 4 Gophers fell to No. 5 Cornell in the quarterfinal match. The 19-17 loss came after Minnesota won 11 consecutive matches at the NWCA National Duals. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said he knew Cornell would be tough going into the meet. “We figured that a couple matches could’ve been swing matches,” Eggum said. “If you win them, you could win [the meet] comfortably.”


2/19/2015, 12:00am

True freshman Lizak steps up

Injuries and weight management issues gave a freshman wrestler an opportunity to compete at the varsity level. Ethan Lizak, the Gophers’ 125-pounder, was thrust into competing against top-ranked opponents in just the 10th dual meet of the season — and his first of the kind.


2/16/2015, 12:00am

Gophers advance to quarterfinals in NWCA national duals

Another year, another spot in the quarterfinals. The Gophers officially advanced to the next round of the NWCA national duals, defeating No. 23 North Dakota State with a score of 26-9. Minnesota will look for its fourth title in as many years next weekend. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said he thought his teamed performed very well overall. “I thought we did a good job of scoring on the first takedown with most of our opportunities,” Eggum said. “We wanted to do that, and we talked about trying to score earlier.”


2/12/2015, 12:00am

Gophers head to NWCA National Duals

Winning any tournament three times in a row is hard enough. But taking the title at four in a row? The Gophers will attempt just that at the upcoming NWCA National Duals.


2/9/2015, 12:00am

Gophers split duals wins over weekend

The last weekend of the regular season might not have finished the way that it should have for the Gophers, but they ended it on a high note with a commanding victory. No. 5 Ohio State beat No. 2 Minnesota on the road 22-13 in an upset before the Gophers trampled on unranked Maryland 34-12. The Gophers looked like two different teams, winning only four matches in the first meet and seven in the second. In the Ohio State meet, the team came out with three consecutive losses and a 10-0 deficit.


2/5/2015, 12:00am

Pfarr embraces tradition

Tradition often starts when an individual wants to continue a passion and pass it on. In Brett Pfarr’s case, his father’s love for wrestling started a tradition for him and his brothers. So for the redshirt sophomore, it was just natural that he wrestled. “My dad wrestled in high school, and my older brother Matthew, who is four years older than me, wrestled at St. John’s [University],” Pfarr said. “I just went right into it, and it just took off.”


2/2/2015, 12:00am

Gophers end 17-meet win streak

With each Minnesota takedown Friday night, fans at Williams Arena stood up and cheered, creating an electric environment. But in front of 13,630 fans, No. 1 Minnesota was unable to extend its 17-match winning streak, losing to No. 2 Iowa 23-12. “We came here to wrestle, and some of our guys didn’t wrestle tonight,” head coach J Robinson said. “I thought that was pretty apparent.” Minnesota started the meet with three consecutive losses, including a pin in the very first match.


1/29/2015, 12:00am

Gophers, Hawkeyes set for marquee matchup

When a sporting event needs to relocate to a larger venue because its original facility won’t fit enough fans, the quality of competition is likely top-notch. That’ll be the case on Friday, when No. 1 Minnesota faces No. 2 Iowa in a marquee matchup at Williams Arena instead of the usual Sports Pavilion. The Sports Pavilion can seat only 5,840 fans, compared with 14,625 at Williams Arena. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said with each program’s history, fans know that it’s worth the drive to come watch.


1/26/2015, 12:00am

Minnesota tops top-10 Penn State

The Gophers fell short of a national championship last year, only losing to Penn State. The No. 1 Gophers came up on top on Sunday, outplaying the No. 6 Nittany Lions 17-16 to remain undefeated in the season. This is the second consecutive year the Gophers defeated Penn State by one point in the regular season. “We split [the meet] five to five,” head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said. “There were a lot of tough [matchups], but we were just proud that the guys are continuing every weekend to get out there and finding ways to win.”


1/22/2015, 12:00am

Minnesota set for top-10 matchup

The Gophers had the national championship in their grasps last season, leading Penn State 104 to 101.5. But as the final session unfolded, the Nittany Lions came back and took the title from the Gophers, ending the championship performance with 109.5 points. No. 2 Minnesota will have its shot at revenge against No. 10 Penn State this Sunday in Pennsylvania. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said he is excited to see the teams face off.


1/20/2015, 12:00am

Dardanes comeback leads Minnesota over Illinois

In the third period of his match Sunday, redshirt senior Chris Dardanes found himself down 7-1. But instead of backing down, Dardanes came back and forced overtime for a sudden victory against Illinois’ Zane Richards. With the momentum from Dardanes, No. 1 Minnesota went on to defeat No. 9 Illinois 20-19. Head coach J Robinson said Dardanes’ performance motivated the team.


12/8/2014, 12:00am

Dardanes, Ness power Gophers to first place

The Gophers bolted out to a commanding start to this season in early November, and they haven’t looked back. They continued their dominance this weekend, cruising to a first-place finish in Las Vegas at the Cliff Keen Invitational. The Gophers competed against 38 programs and had seven wrestlers place in the top five of their weight class. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said his team wrestled strong and gave its best effort.


12/4/2014, 12:00am

Gophers to face Big Ten foes at invite

Coming off a victory against top-10 Oklahoma State, the wrestling team will look to continue its momentum as it heads to the Cliff Keen Invitational. Among the 39 teams competing alongside Minnesota in the two-day event are Big Ten foes Indiana, Michigan, Ohio State and Nebraska. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said his team knows all of the Big Ten schools very well, but it also expects to see different lineups at the invitational.


12/1/2014, 12:00am

Gophers beat top-10 Oklahoma State

The Gophers recorded a victory over a top-10 opponent Saturday — Oklahoma State. Despite the victory, head coach J Robinson said the team has room for improvement. “We didn’t wrestle as good as we should have,” he said. “It’s always good when you win, [but] there are things that we need to work on.” With a 6-0 decision in the 157-pound weight class, redshirt senior Dylan Ness clinched the 19-15 team victory for the No. 1 Gophers against the No. 8 Cowboys.


11/26/2014, 12:00am

Wrestlers ready for tough challenge

The Gophers defeated Oklahoma State last year by one point on the road. They’ll have a chance to replicate that performance on Saturday at home. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said the Gophers will be facing a very good program when they take on the No. 8 team in the nation. “We expect a hard-fought battle this Saturday,” Eggum said. “They are a bigger team, and there is no question that our guys are excited about the opportunity to wrestle [Oklahoma State]. There [will] be some good matchups … and some fun battles to watch.”


11/24/2014, 12:00am

Two wins help team stay perfect

With a pin and a technical fall against Grand Canyon and Michigan State, respectively, senior Logan Storley electrified the crowd at the Sports Pavilion on two consecutive nights. No. 1 Minnesota won eight of the 10 matches against Grand Canyon and nine of the 10 matches against Michigan State. These were two dominating performances by the Gophers, but head coach J Robinson said his team still has some things to improve on.


11/24/2014, 12:00am

Two wins help team stay perfect

With a pin and a technical fall against Grand Canyon and Michigan State, respectively, senior Logan Storley electrified the crowd at the Sports Pavilion on two consecutive nights. No. 1 Minnesota won eight of the 10 matches against Grand Canyon and nine of the 10 matches against Michigan State. These were two dominating performances by the Gophers, but head coach J Robinson said his team still has some things to improve on.


11/20/2014, 12:00am

Kroells excels on, off mat

After two-time NCAA champion Tony Nelson graduated last spring, the Gophers wrestling program had a vacant starting spot at the heavyweight position. Redshirt sophomore Michael Kroells has taken Nelson’s spot and has big shoes to fill. The wrestling team has had 22 individual national championships, and seven of them have been heavyweights. Kroells, who is 2-0 to start the season, has a chance to add to that winning tradition. Head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said Kroells has a chance to become great because of his discipline.


11/17/2014, 12:00am

Gophers win first two dual meets

Hours of traveling didn’t seem to fatigue the Gophers on Saturday, as they defeated both Air Force and Wyoming. Minnesota defeated Air Force 28-15 and Wyoming 30-7, starting their dual-meet schedule with two victories. The victories gave Minnesota its 11th- and 12th-consecutive nonconference dual meet victories since 2012. “I am really proud of the guys,” head assistant coach Brandon Eggum said. “I thought it was a tough day overall, and we had wrestlers that stepped up and wrestled well.”


11/13/2014, 12:00am

Brancale hungry for improvement

After failing to qualify for the NCAA championships last year as a redshirt freshman, Sam Brancale is looking to have his best season yet as a Gophers wrestler. Last week, Brancale took first at the Bison Open in North Dakota, earning him the starting spot for the 125-pound weight class.