According to the Wisconsin Wrestling Online polls, this should be the dual of the year in the MVC. Tonight, Sparta (ranked 4th in D2) hosts Holmen (ranked 9th in D1) in a battle of MVC unbeatens. The way things are looking in the conference, this dual has a high probability of determining the MVC champion. And just like last year, expect the dual to be close with bonus points playing a huge role.
Injuries and sickness have been issues all year for the Spartans. The team has yet to wrestle a dual or tournament with every varsity wrestler in action. It looks like tonight might be a good chance for that to happen for the first time all year. Kyle Burkhalter was injured in his 5th place match at the Cheesehead and was held out of the Stevens Point Tournament, but it appears he will be back and ready to go tonight. Tristan Zurfluh has recovered strongly, Dylan Winchel is as good as every and the team has put together some impressive tournament finishes despite never being at full strength.
Here are some details on what the Spartans might face when they face-off with Holmen tonight…
- 106 – Ryan Bennett has a record of 23-13, 12th place finisher at Bi-State, Defeated Logan’s Nick Houlihan 4-3, Sparta’s Corey Zimmerman lost to Houlihan 7-0, Both Trygve Zurfluh and Bennett lost to Weston/Ithaca’s Hunter Dischler by scores of 15-4 and by pin in 3:49
- 113 – Fue Yang has a record of 19-11
- 120 – Jonah Rieber has a record of 18-14, DNP at Bi-State, Rieber defeated Onalaska’s Konrad Ernst 5-2 while Steven Kelly beat Ernst 8-1,
- 126 – Wyatt Anderson has a record of 9-11, DNP at Bi-State,
- 132 – Darius Wright has a record of 21-2, currently ranked 4th in D1, 2nd place finisher at Bi-State, Wright pinned Onalaska’s Andy Achenreiner in 1:44 while Polhamus pinned Achenreiner in 1:06,
- 138 – Ryan Stalsberg has a record of 31-4, currently ranked 4th in D1, 5th place finisher at Bi-State, Stalsberg pinned Onalaska’s Andrew Levandoski in 1:16 while Austin Feltner pinned Levandoski in 5:06,
- 145 – Avery Hackett has a record of 27-7, currently an honorable mention in D1, 10th place finisher at Bi-State, Lancaster’s Trenton Cornell defeated Hackett 7-2 while Cornell defeated Michael Murnane 11-3, Hackett defeated Onalaska’s Grant Parker 2-0 while Parker pinned Sparta’s Brady Hansen in 1:39,
- 152 – Zeik Hellerude has a record of 7-6, DNP at Bi-State,
- 160 – Nick Frana has a record of 20-11, DNP at Bi-State,
- 170 – Tyler Westpfahl has a record of 23-8, currently ranked 15th in D1, DNT at Bi-State,
- 182 – Duncan McKinney has a record of 27-9, currently ranked 13th in D1, 8th place finisher at Bi-State, McKinney defeated Lancaster’s David Chadd 4-2 in overtime while Burkhalter was pinned by Chadd in 3:31, At the Sparta Invite last year McKinney defeated Greg Skon 4-1,
- 195 – Jacob Wiemerslage has a record of 14-7 while Noah Risch has a record of 22-1. These two have split time at this weight class, but Risch is the more highly ranked wrestler coming in at 9th in D1, Risch was a 2nd place finisher at Bi-State,
- 220 – Charles Serauskas has a record of 15-6, currently ranked 15th in D1, DNP at Bi-State,
- 285 – Hunter Hauser has a record of 31-1, currently ranked 4th in D1, 3rd place finisher at Bi-State, Hauser pinned Monroe’s Brett Zimmerman in 3:16 while Zimmerman pinned Benish in 1:39 at Reedsburg,
These are just a few of the comparisons. From top to bottom, Holmen is a solid team with some standout individuals. They are particularly tough at 132 and 138 and from 170 on. Sparta will need to avoid their backs and bonus points as much as possible to stay in this match. Sparta needs to get pins and bonus points at 113, 120, 126 and 145. At 132 pounds, Polhamus has defeated Wright in the past and doing so tonight would serve as a huge boost to the Spartan’s chances.
Other key matches include 152, 160 and 170. Hell. Every match is important. Here is how Sparta fared against Holmen last year…
132 – Derek VonRuden defeated Ryan Stalsberg (Holmen) 4-2
138 – Dan Niccum (Holmen) defeated Paul Vantassel 7-4
145 – Michael Murnane defeated Avery Hackett (Holmen) 17-11
152 – Toby Mosley major decisioned Nick Frana (Holmen) 12-2
160 – Tyler Westpfahl (Holmen) defeated Bob Ragan 8-4
170 – Duncan McKinney (Holmen) defeated Greg Skon 9-3
182 – Kyle Burkhalter pinned Jacob Wiemerslage (Holmen) 4:26
195 – Joe Inglett (Holmen) defeated Daniel Dawley 4-1
220 – Tyler Shockey (Holmen) defeated Logan Degenhardt 11-5
285 – Hunter Hauser (Holmen) pinned Chris Beeler 2:32
106 – Dylan Winchel major decisioned Wyatt Anderson (Holmen) 17-5
113 – John Roddick tech falled Louis Corcoran (Holmen) 22-7
120 – Darius Wright (Holmen) defeated Brock Polhamus 6-3
126 – James Bennett (Holmen) major decisioned Tristan Zurfluh 9-1
The matches in bold above feature wrestlers that are back this year. As you can see, Hackett and Murnane appear to be heading toward a re-match. Last year, Murnane defeated Hackett 16-6 at Stevens Point and 17-11 at the dual.
BONUS POINTS. They will be huge and will make the difference. Last year, one match, three points separated winners from losers and it could be the same again. Gaining those bonus points and avoiding giving them up will be key.
A few items of note. There will be NO LIVE BLOG here tomorrow. We will be live streaming the dual and you will be able to listen to it on the radio. Check back here tomorrow morning for radio details and more. Also, on Friday there will be plenty of photos from tonight’s dual posted here on Spartanwrestling.com.