Gophers wrestlers claim six titles at Omaha tourney

Seniors Jacob Volkmann (165 pounds) and Damion Hahn (197) led the way.

by Aaron Blake

Minnesota’s wrestling team won six of 20 individual titles at the Ryan Kaufman-Glen Brand Open on Saturday in Omaha, Neb.

Highlighting the Gophers’ performance were seniors Jacob Volkmann and Damion Hahn, who won the 165-pound and 197-pound titles, respectively.

“I think it’s progress,” coach J Robinson said. “We wanted to try to score, and it was a good opportunity to do that.”

Saturday’s open tournament is the largest one-day event in collegiate wrestling, and Robinson said it was good for his youthful squad to get some experience against a variety of competition.

More than 500 wrestlers representing 31 schools turned out at Sapp Fieldhouse for the event, which began at 9 a.m. and lasted all day.

Volkmann won five matches en route to his first-place finish, concluding with a 4-2 final victory over Central Oklahoma’s Shawn Silvis.

Hahn downed four foes on his path, finishing with a 3-1 win over Iowa’s Ryan Fulsaas in the title match.

Freshman Cole Konrad advanced to the heavyweight title match before falling to Les Sigman, wrestling unattached.

Transfer Jon Duncombe finished fourth at 184 pounds, Quincy Osborn won fifth place at 133 pounds and Josh McLay lost in the fifth place match at 174 pounds.

The Under-20 Division also gave the Gophers an opportunity to flex the muscles of their top-ranked recruiting class.

“I thought the freshman class did really well in the under-20 division,” Robinson said.

Four freshmen won titles in the division, including Mack Reiter at 125 pounds, C.P. Schlatter at 149 pounds, Gabriel Dretsch at 174 pounds, and Matt Koz at 197 pounds.

Schlatter, who started at 149 pounds in last weekend’s Harold Nichols Open, beat Augsburg’s Ryan King in the title match.

In addition, Roger Kish finished second at 184 pounds. Manuel Rivera was third at 133 pounds.

Minnesota will travel Dec. 5-6 to Las Vegas for the Las Vegas Invitational. It will be the team’s final tune-up before its dual schedule begins.

The Gophers’ first dual match is versus Iowa State on Dec. 12 at Target Center.