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Gophers wrestling drop dual to top-ranked team

Minnesota lost 34-3 to No. 1 Oklahoma State on Sunday
Gophers wrestler Brett Pfarr tangles up with Oklahoma States Preston Weigel at the Sports Pavilion on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016.
Image by Carter Jones
Gophers wrestler Brett Pfarr tangles up with Oklahoma State’s Preston Weigel at the Sports Pavilion on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016.

No. 16 Minnesota went into its dual on Saturday with the intent of upsetting No. 1 Oklahoma State.

The Gophers left the matchup with their goal unaccomplished.

The Cowboys blew out the Gophers 34-3 to earn the victory at the Sports Pavilion Sunday.

“It was a great team — we knew that coming into it,” said head coach Brandon Eggum. “Some guys wrestled well, some guys didn’t. We’ve got to continue to make adjustments.”

No. 2 Brett Pfarr got the only points of the match at 197 pounds. He earned a takedown on No. 6 Preston Weigel in the first period. Weigel received a technical foul to give up another point.

Pfarr added two takedowns in the third period to win his match 7-2 and gave Minnesota three points in the dual.

He said there are definitely things he can improve on.

“I chose down in the second period, and I got ridden out for two minutes, and that definitely changed the aspect of the match,” Pfarr said.

Pfarr’s match was the only victory for the Gophers. Minnesota wrestlers conceded two falls and two major decisions in the loss.

Minnesota went down by 12 when Brandon Kingsley conceded a fall at 165 pounds. Kingsley avoided the pin to give up the takedown early in the first period, but No. 4 Chandler Rogers came back and got the pin later in the period.

No. 5 Michael Kroells was upset by Austin Schafer at the heavyweight position.

Kroells conceded a takedown but came back with an escape, making the match 3-2 in favor of Schafer.

Schafer hung on at the end to win the match 3-2 and help the Cowboys get out to an 18-point lead.

“If you leave it to 0-0 in the last period, there’s always a chance you’re going to lose there,” Kroells said. “Just got to put more shots out there.”

Fredy Stroker opened up the dual for Minnesota at 149 pounds. He exchanged shots with No. 3 Anthony Collica, but he fell in the match 6-4.

“Fredy Stroker nearly beat one of the best guys in the country,” Eggum said. “The small areas that he’s got to improve on would’ve given him a better chance to win that one.”

No. 14 Nick Wanzek was in a stalemate against No. 4 Kyle Crutchmer until the third period of the match. Crutchmer got a takedown in the third period to go up 7-2. Wanzek got the escape and added a takedown in the final second but went down in the match 7-5. The Cowboys led 15-0.

Bobby Steveson and No. 5 Nolan Boyd both scored zero points in the first period of their match at 184 pounds. Boyd got the first points of the match on an escape to go up 1-0 in the second period.

Steveson came back with an escape in the third, but Boyd won the match 2-1 on riding time.

“[Steveson] wrestled great, I thought,” Eggum said. “The thing that kind of beat him is that he has to get away a little earlier.”

Minnesota heads to the Cliff Keen Invitational after the loss.

Kroells said it’s always good to have a wake-up call with a match like Oklahoma State.

“Kind of hurts, but some guys wrestled good,” Kroells said.

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