The dual started at 149 and No. 1 Zain Retherford pinned Gopher Carson Brolsma at 2:28 in first period. No. 1 Jason Nolf followed that performance with another pin at 157 over No. 9 Jake Short.
Redshirt freshman Vincenzo Joseph and senior Geno Morelli secured two more victories at 165 and 174 to maintain the first half shut out. No. 2 Bo Nickal ended the half with the Lions’ third and final pin of the match over the Gophers’ Bobby Stevenson.
One of the featured matchups came at 197 when junior No. 11 Matt McCutcheon faced No. 2 Brett Pfarr. Pfarr placed third at the NCAA championships last year and has only dropped one bout this year to 197’s No. 1 J’den Cox from Missouri.
A hard fought battle in the first kept the bout scoreless. Pfarr chose down to start the second and quickly escaped to a 1-0 lead. The Gopher worked for control on a low single, which McCutcheon fought to hold off, but Pfarr notched the takedown and 3-0 lead. McCutcheon escaped to get on the scoreboard and connected on a low single with :40 left in the second. Pfarr held him off. McCutcheon chose down to start the third and worked for the escape. Similar to the second period, McCutcheon connected on a low single with :45 left in the match. Pfarr kept up his solid defense to close the match 3-2.
Sophomore No. 5 Nick Nevills continues to impress in his first starting season at 285 with a dominant 4-0 win over Minnesota’s No. 8 Michael Kroells. Freshman No. 3 Nick Suriano is doing the same with his first starting season. He added an 8-6 win over No. 6 Ethan Lizak to his undefeated record.
Sophomore George Carpenter stepped in at 133 for Jered Cortez and almost upset No. 16 Mitch McKee. After McKee’s quick takedown for the lead in the first, Carpenter spent most of the second and third periods controlling from the top and working to turn McKee for back points. Unable to do so, McKee took the win with the takedown advantage, 2-1.
The final, featured and most exciting match of the day came at the end. Senior No. 12 Jimmy Gulibon met Minnesota’s No. 9 Tommy Thorn. Thorn struck first with a low double and 2-0 lead. Gulibon escaped and shot back. He connected on a high single and rode Thorn out to end the first with a 3-2 lead. Gulibon chose down to start the second. Thorn clinched the riding time before Gulibon was able to escape. The second ended with a score of 4-2, Gulibon. Thorn was down to start the third and was able to escape and hold onto his riding time advantage, 4-3. Gulibon worked a low single for another takedown and held control on top to kill Thorn’s riding time. Gulibon’s aggressive and well-executed offense got him the 6-3 upset win.
The Lions finish their weekend on the road in Lincoln, Nebraska on Sunday, January 8. No. 5 Nebraska is coming off of a second place finish at the Midland Championships. The match starts at 3 p.m. and will be aired on BTN Plus.
149: PSU #1 Zain Retherford pinned MINN Carson Brolsma, WBF (2:28)
157: PSU #1 Jason Nolf pinned MINN #9 Jake Short, WBF (3:44)
165: PSU #5 Vincenzo Joseph dec. MINN #14 Nick Wanzek, 7-4
174: PSU Geno Morelli dec. MINN Chris Pfarr, 5-2
184: PSU #2 Bo Nickal pinned MINN Bobby Stevenson, WBF (2:36)
197: MINN #2 Brett Pfarr dec. PSU #11 Matt McCutcheon, 3-2
285: PSU #5 Nick Nevills dec. MINN #8 Michael Kroells, 4-0
125: PSU #3 Nick Suriano dec. MINN#6 Ethan Lizak, 8-6
133: MINN #16 Mitch McKee dec. PSU George Carpenter, 2-1
141: PSU #12 Jimmy Gulibon dec. MINN #9 Tommy Thorn, 6-3