The Hawkeyes Head North to Take on the Gophers

Who: #4 Iowa 5-0 (1-0) vs #7 Minnesota 6-1 (1-0)
Where: Minneapolis, Minnesota
When: Sunday, January 13th, 2019 12:00 PM
Watch: BTN (TV)| BTN+/Flowrestling (Online – Subscription required)

Photo: Nic Ryder | IAwrestle

The Iowa Hawkeyes return to dual action this Sunday when they head north to face border rival Minnesota. It will be a battle of Big Ten unbeatens, with both programs ranked in the top ten nationally.

Iowa is coming off their Midlands title performance that saw them place six wrestlers in the finals, and two of those came away with their first ever Midlands title. Winning for the Hawks were sophomores Austin DeSanto and Alex Marinelli at 133 and 165 pounds respectively.

Entering this dual there are a total of 15 ranked wrestlers expected to take the mat for the rivalry dual. One of the notable absents on Iowa’s side will be #1 ranked heavyweight Sam Stoll, who was slated to face the #2 ranked Gable Stevenson. Stoll was not listed among Iowa’s potential starters for the weekend meeting, with redshirt freshman Aaron Costello listed in his place.

There are still plenty of fantastic ranked matchups to watch for this weekend as fans will still be able to witness five other head-to-head meetings between ranked foes. Of those five matches three of those are a top ten meeting. With some many matchups between some of the Big Ten’s best it goes without saying that this could be a very important dual for Iowa when it comes time for the postseason seeding meetings.

After dropping an unexpected match in the Midlands finals to Northwestern’s Sebastian Rivera, Spencer Lee will return to the fire as he will meet the #6 ranked Sean Russell. The Edinboro transfer has been a big boost for the Gophers this season, but he faces a tall task in face what should be a motivated Lee.

The next big matchup will be at 133 pounds where there will be another top ten meeting between DeSanto and the #8 ranked Ethan Lizak. DeSanto is riding the momentum of his aforementioned Midlands title and picking up a win over two-time All-American Lizak would rate among his best wins in his career if he manages a victory this Sunday.

In the 141-pound bout Hawkeye freshman Max Murin will look to continue his strong start to his career when he faces off against the #7 ranked Mitch McKee. Coming into the dual Murin carries a 9-2 record with this losses being a one point decision to Ian Parker (Iowa State) and a 5-2 loss to Alber in the Midlands finals.

The final ranked meetings will feature Hawkeye favorites as Pat Lugo and Kaleb Young will look to hold off the threat of upset from the likes of #14 Tommy Thorn and #8 Steve Bleise respectively.

Dual Preview (TOM Rankings)
#4 Iowa vs #7 Minnesota
125 #2 Spencer Lee vs #6 Sean Russell
133 #10 Austin DeSanto vs #8 Ethan Lizak
141 #13 Max Murin vs #7 Mitch McKee
149 #12 Pat Lugo vs #14 Tommy Thorn
157 #5 Kaleb Young vs #8 Steve Bleise
165 #2 Alex Marinelli vs Carson Brolsma
174 Mitch Bowman vs #12 Devin Skatzka
184 #11 Cash Wilcke vs Owen Webster
197 #7 Jacob Warner vs Dylan Anderson
285 Aaron Costello vs #2 Gable Stevenson

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