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MSU Moorhead handles Blue Hawks

Press Photo by Meaghan MacDonald Dickinson State freshman Jon Solano attempts to bring down Minnesota State Moorhead’s Shawn Porter during a nonconference dual on Wednesday at Scott Gymnasium. Solano pinned Porter at 165-pound weight class.

The inexperience and youth on the Dickinson State wrestling team finally caught up to them.

The Blue Hawks lost 30-12 in a dual against Minnesota State Moorhead on Wednesday night at Scott Gymnasium. The Dragons went out to an early 12-0 lead, getting pins in the first two bouts over freshman Cade Coles and senior Mack Chambers. DSU won three of the four next bouts to close the gap to 15-12, but MSUM broke away and won the final three.

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“Obviously our inexperience showed in matches, matches that we could have been in but stopped wrestling,” DSU head coach Thad O’Donnell said. “We were being aggressive and getting into shops and it was basically the first person to quit moving loses the points. We’re just not at that point where we have enough confidence that we continue through and continue to wrestle.”

DSU had four freshmen start in the dual Wednesday and despite the inexperience, Devan Williams and Jon Solano were able to win two of the team’s three bouts. In the 157 weight class, the match was scoreless for three periods. With seconds left, Williams won the match with an escape over MSUM'S Daniel Murakami.

“I just went out, tried to stay in good position the whole time,” Williams said. “You could kind of tell in that first period with that kid … We butted heads a couple times and could tell right away when he came up and swung right after that he was going to break and it was just a matter of time.”

After Williams’ match, Solano took the mat against junior Shawn Porter in the 165 weight class which was another physical battle. Solano was up 3-0 in the second period where he nearly pinned Porter, but he escaped and forced the bout to go into the second period. At 6 minutes, 15 seconds, Solano was able to put Porter on his back and get the pin, putting the Blue Hawks within three points.

“I just went out there, wrestled hard and believed that I was going to win and I won,” Solano said.

O’Donnell added: “Jon is a real solid wrestler. He doesn’t give up a lot of points.”

With two freshmen winning bouts, inexperience wasn’t the only problem for the Blue Hawks. O’Donnell said consistency with confidence has been a nagging issue. In practice, the team is fierce, confident and never gives up, but have a problem transitioning into the singlets on the mat.

The team is off until Saturday where it will travel to Jamestown for the University of Jamestown Open. DSU already has a tournament under its belt and know what to expect going in. Besides working on some mechanics in practice, O’Donnell said the team is really going to try and find its confidence and work on carrying it over from practice into bouts.

“We worked really hard for the points we got,” O’Donnell said. “Mack (Chambers) was getting beat by six and then all of a sudden we get pinned that goes from giving up three to giving up six. Some of those things are deceiving just looking at sheer numbers. But I think it’s just time we need, to get some mat time under our belt, gain some confidence and start building on some things.”

Williams added: “Everybody comes out and steps on your mat and they come to your house and plan on beating you, but you got to take a little bit of pride. That’s your mat and there shouldn’t be any reason they should step on your mat and claim it as there’s. It’s yours, take it.”

125: Blake Bosch, MSU-M pin. Cade Coles, 1:30; 133: Austin Leibel, MSU-M, pin. Mack Chambers, 4:30; 141: Seth Ehlang, DSU dec. Mario Tuccitto, 5-4; 149: Garrett Hoffner, MSU-M, dec. Sean Elkins, 7-2; 157: Devan Williams, DSU, dec. Daniel Murakami, 1-0; 165: Jon Solano, DSU, pin. Shawn Porter, 6:15; 174: Michael Joseph, MSU-M, maj. dec. Tyler Brown, 8-0; 184: Matthew Lewellen, MSU-M, maj. dec. Lane Oversen, 15-6; 197: Tyler Schlosser, MSU-M, maj. dec. Skyler Carroll, 8-0; HWT: Gerad Fugleberg, MSU-M, dec. Brian Klevis, 5-0.

Meaghan MacDonald

Meaghan is the sports page designer and copy editor for the Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.  After graduating from James Madison University (Va.) in May 2013, she moved from New Jersey to North Dakota to start pursuing her career in sports journalism and was a sports reporter for the Dickinson Press and covered Dickinson State athletics. Meaghan has been working for the Forum since June 2015.