No. 2 Gophers wrestlers knock off No. 1 Penn State

  • Article by: RANDY JOHNSON , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 10, 2014 - 7:30 AM

The No. 2 Gophers wrestling team took down No. 1 Penn State by a mere point in its final home match of the season.

hide

Dylan Ness, at 157 pounds, pinned Penn State's Dylan Alton to give the Gophers the jolt they needed before a full house at the Sports Pavilion.

Photo: JERRY HOLT • jerry.holt@startribune.com,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Turns out, rumors of Tony Nelson’s demise were greatly exaggerated. As were those of Penn State’s wrestling invincibility.

Nelson, the Gophers heavyweight and the two-time reigning NCAA champion, entered Sunday’s dual meet against No. 1 Penn State with a three-match losing streak. But the senior from Cambridge supplied the decisive points as the Gophers, ranked No. 2 by Amateur Wrestling News, knocked off the Nittany Lions 18-17 in front of a sold-out, amped-up crowd at the Sports Pavilion.

The victory gave the Gophers (10-1, 7-1) the Big Ten dual meet championship, which they will share with Penn State (13-1, 7-1), the three-time defending NCAA champion.

‘‘What a way to end your career,’’ Gophers coach J Robinson said of Nelson, who was wrestling his final home match. “There was a lot of opportunity for the team and the individuals themselves, and they made the most of it.’’

Added Nelson: “It’s great to beat the No. 1 team, senior year, final match at home. It was awesome.’’

Nelson’s 6-0 decision over Penn State’s Jon Gingrich punctuated a back-and-forth dual that saw Penn State take an early 7-3 lead before the Gophers came back to lead 12-7 at intermission.

And as much as Nelson’s victory sealed the outcome, the performance of 157-pounder Dylan Ness sent the Gophers on their way to the upset.

Ness, ranked No. 8 by the wrestling website Intermat, pinned No. 4 Dylan Alton in the third period, throwing the Nittany Lion to his back after a strong countermove to an attempted takedown. Ness’ victory delivered an ear-piercing roar from the announced crowd of 5,603.

“I think that gave a big boost to our team and really got the crowd going,’’ said Ness, a junior from Bloomington who handed Penn State only its third loss by fall in Big Ten matches this season. “… Nothing better than getting a fall for your team.’’

The Gophers won three of the first five matches. Joining Ness were David Thorn on a decision at 133 and Nick Dardanes with a thrilling 6-4 triumph (sudden victory 2) over Zach Beitz.

“To get three wins in that first five was a big deal for us. That kind of set the stage on what we needed to do,’’ Robinson said. “But it wasn’t over by any stretch of the imagination.’’

It certainly wasn’t, although Ness’ victory and its six team points supplied a cushion the Gophers needed against the upcoming Penn State gantlet — No. 1-ranked David Taylor at 157, No. 3 Matt Brown at 174 and No. 2 Ed Ruth at 184.

Taylor scored a 13-3 major decision over Gophers senior Danny Zilverberg, but Robinson was pleased Penn State didn’t get more than the one bonus point.

“He saved us a point,’’ Robinson said. “It made all the difference in the world. He lost, but he contributed. That’s what a team effort is.’’

At 174, the Gophers’ sixth-ranked Logan Storley pulled off a four-point move early in the second period, then countered with a key takedown in the third for an 8-4 victory over Brown. That gave the Gophers a 15-11 lead with three matches to go.

Ruth, a two-time national champ, scored a quick takedown and made it stand on his way to a 7-1 decision over Kevin Steinhaus that cut the Minnseota lead to 15-14.

Penn State, though, wasn’t through.

Gophers junior Scott Schiller, ranked No. 1 at 197, suffered his first loss of the season, 8-4 to No. 6 Morgan McIntosh, as the Nittany Lions took a 17-15 lead.

  • related content

  • Gophers football team already chasing 2015 recruiting class

    Monday February 10, 2014

    After landing a well-regarded class last week, Jerry Kill’s staff is hoping for another one that includes Cretin-Derham Hall's Jashon Cornell.

  • U women rally late to defeat Illinois behind Banham, Zahui B.

    Monday February 10, 2014

    Rachel Banham and record-setter Amanda Zahui B. led the comeback.

  • Hartman: Despite his size, Mathieu comes up big for Gophers

    Monday February 10, 2014

    The 5-9 point guard often is the difference in a game's outcome.

  • David Thorn put up the Gophers’ first victory, defeating Penn State’s Jimmy Gulibon 2-0 at 133 pounds. The Gophers won three of the first five matches.

  • Minnesota heavyweight Tony Nelson celebrated his win of over Penn State's Jon Gingrich during Big Ten wrestling action between Minnesota and Penn State at the Sports Pavilion Sunday Feb. 9, 2014 Minneapolis, MN. ] JERRY HOLT ‚Ä¢ jerry.holt@startribune.com ORG XMIT: MIN1402091949282094

  • Gophers heavyweight Tony Nelson soundly defeated Penn State’s Jon Gingrich 6-0 in the final match of the day.

  • Tony Nelson:In his final match in front of the home crowd, the senior heavyweight picked up three points to give the Gophers the victory. He had lost three in a row.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Toronto 104 FINAL
Indiana 91
Cleveland 103 FINAL
Detroit 95
Milwaukee 109 FINAL
Miami 102
Memphis 109 FINAL
Dallas 90
Chicago 113 FINAL
Golden State 111
Washington 98 FINAL
LA Lakers 92
NY Rangers 1 FINAL
NY Islanders 4
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Philadelphia 4
Winnipeg 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 5
Washington 3 FINAL
Columbus 4
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL
Carolina 4
Dallas 2 FINAL
Montreal 3
Detroit 5 FINAL
Florida 4
Colorado 3 FINAL(OT)
Nashville 4
Buffalo 1 FINAL
Calgary 4
Minnesota 2 FINAL
Edmonton 1
Anaheim 4 FINAL
Vancouver 0
Ball State 47 FINAL
Akron 59
Northern Ill 46 FINAL
Bowling Green 56
Western Mich 71 FINAL
Buffalo 77
Ohio 40 FINAL
Eastern Mich 76
Xavier 66 FINAL
Georgetown 53
Vanderbilt 62 FINAL
Georgia 70
West Virginia 65 FINAL
Kansas State 59
Central Mich 53 FINAL
Kent State 63
Saint Josephs 48 FINAL
La Salle 53
Nebraska 44 FINAL
Michigan 58
Miami-Ohio 65 FINAL
Toledo 70
Tulsa 62 FINAL
Tulane 55
George Washington 48 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 72
Pittsburgh 67 FINAL
Virginia Tech 70
Indiana State 78 FINAL
Evansville 89
Tabor College 53 FINAL
Oral Roberts 94
Florida 52 FINAL
Alabama 50
Tennessee 64 FINAL
Arkansas 69
Texas A&M 71 FINAL
Auburn 61
Baylor 53 FINAL
Oklahoma State 64
DePaul 0 Postponed
Providence 0
Michigan State 0 Postponed
Rutgers 0
Wyoming 44 FINAL
Utah State 56
Fresno State 47 FINAL
San Diego St 58
UNLV 67 FINAL
Nevada 62
SD Christian 54 FINAL
CS-Bakersfield 79
Colorado State 78 FINAL
Boise State 82
Temple 71 FINAL
UCF 54
Campbell 42 FINAL
Presbyterian 51
Coastal Carolina 65 FINAL
High Point 73
Gardner-Webb 49 FINAL
Radford 59
UNC-Asheville 58 FINAL
Liberty 62
Winthrop 63 FINAL
Longwood 62
Columbia International 33 FINAL
Charleston Southern 74
Tulane 63 FINAL
Houston 46
(3) Baylor 89 FINAL
TCU 67
Navy 49 FINAL
American Univ 59
Valparaiso 42 FINAL
Illinois-Chicago 60
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Do you favor the plan for expanded athletic facilities at the U of M?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close