Hawkeye wrestlers stay unbeaten in Big Ten duals

Fourth-ranked Iowa edges No. 3 Minnesota, 16-15, on criteria; hosts top-ranked Penn State on Friday

For the second straight year, the University of Iowa has a regular-season win in the Border Brawl.

The fourth-ranked Hawkeyes remained unbeaten in Big Ten competition, dropping University of Minnesota, 16-15, on criteria in front of 8,254 fans Saturday at Williams Arena in Minneapolis. Iowa owned a 41-33 advantage in overall match points, gaining the decisive point over the No. 3 Gophers after splitting the matches five apiece.

Iowa improved to 15-1 overall and 5-0 in the Big Ten, while Minnesota falls to 11-2 and 5-1.

“I don’t know if it means much, except it moves you forward,” said Iowa coach Tom Brands, noting the programs will likely flip-flop in the rankings. “Now we look forward to Penn State. Winning 16-15 on criteria is better than not, but we had a lot of situations we could have controlled and we didn’t so we have to go to work.”

Tony Ramos and Nick Moore helped pad the team lead and the edge in match points, despite missing major decisions. Each scored eight points in their wins. The 18th-ranked Moore, a key part to last year’s win over Minnesota, beat No. 10 Cody Yohn, 8-2, at 165 pounds, giving the Hawkeyes a 15-3 lead. Second-ranked Ramos posted an 8-2 decision over No. 9 Chris Dardanes at 133.

Ramos’ win was sandwiched between victories by 125-pounder Matt McDonough and Mark Ballweg (141), which gave Iowa a 9-0 lead. Derek St. John increased the Hawkeyes advantage to 12-3 with a win at 157.

Minnesota tied the dual with four straight victories, but all were close. Minnesota’s second-ranked Logan Storley scored crucial points at the end of the first and second period and held off No. 6 Mike Evans, 4-3, at 174. The Gophers’ No. 12 Scott Schiller won an overtime match over Nathan Burak at 197 and Gophers heavyweight Tony Nelson edged Bobby Telford, 2-1, to tie the score before criteria.

“There’s close matches again where it comes down to finishing,” said Brands, mentioning Evans, Burak and Telford. “We finish (and) those matches go out way.”

Iowa hosts top-ranked Penn State on Friday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, beginning at 8 p.m.

#4 IOWA 16*, #3 Minnesota 15

125 – #1 Matt McDonough (IA) dec. #13 David Thorn (UM), 6-3;

133 – #2 Tony Ramos (IA) dec. #9 Chris Dardanes (UM), 8-2;

141 – #9 Mark Ballweg (IA) dec. #10 Nick Dardanes (UM), 3-1;

149 – #10 Dylan Ness (UM) dec. Michael Kelly (IA), 8-2;

157 – #1 Derek St. John (IA) dec. Danny Zilverberg (UM), 6-2;

165 – #18 Nick Moore (IA) dec. #10 Cody Yohn (UM), 8-2;

174 – #2 Logan Storley (UM) dec. #6 Mike Evans (IA), 4-3;

184 – #5 Kevin Steinhaus (UM) dec. #14 Ethen Lofthouse (IA), 6-3;

197 – #12 Scott Schiller (UM) dec. #20 Nathan Burak (IA), 3-1 (SV);

285 – #2 Tony Nelson (UM) dec. #5 Bobby Telford (IA), 2-1;

*Iowa earns one team point on the third criteria – total match points (41-33)

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