Indiana Daily Student

Minnesota too strong for Hoosiers

As the opening lineups were announced Friday night for IU's clash with Minnesota, it was understood a Hoosier victory would be nothing short of miraculous.\nThe Golden Gophers were favorites to win at every weight class.\nThe overmatched Hoosiers lost seven of nine matches and accepted one forfeit as the No. 1 ranked Gophers out-muscled No. 22 Indiana 25-12. The loss gave the Hoosiers (13-4,1-3 Big Ten) their third consecutive conference defeat and preserved Minnesota\'s (14-1,3-0 Big Ten) perfect conference record.\nCoach Duane Goldman gave credit to the Gopher wrestlers and said he was encouraged by his team's effort.\n"(Minnesota) won most the matches and deserved to win the bout," Goldman said. "It is hard to compete against guys like that, but I felt that we stood up there pretty well tonight."\nIn the night's opening match, fifth-ranked junior Viktor Sveda (184 lbs.) upset third-ranked Minnesota freshman Damion Hahn. The two wrestlers spent much of the match on the perimeter pushing each other out of bounds.\nWith the score tied 1-1 in the third period, each wrestler was cautious of making a mistake. With less than 10 seconds remaining in the third period, Sveda went on the offensive. He dumped Hahn with two seconds remaining, giving Sveda the 3-1 decision and the Hoosiers an early lead.\nThe Sveda victory was his first over Hahn after losing to him in overtime earlier in the season at the Midlands. Goldman called Hahn last year's most-sought-after recruit in the country.\nIn the next match, Minnesota junior Owen Elzen (197 lbs.) overpowered IU sophomore Ty Matthews (197 lbs.) for a 12-0 major decision. Elzen\'s win moved Minnesota in front 4-3 and set up an important match for the heavyweights.\nIn the heavyweight division, IU senior Michael Dixon hoped to upset 2000 Olympic bronze medallist and second-ranked Garrett Lowney. The match began slowly with neither wrestler scoring in the first period. Each wrestler scored an escape in the second and the score stalled at 1-1. Lowney spent much of the match riding Dixon\'s back. He accumulated enough riding time to win the match 2-1. Lowney anticipated a close match with Dixon.\n"I\'ve come to expect that I\'m not going to blow anyone out," Lowney said. "I just got to stick to my game plan and keep looking for scores." \nWith Minnesota leading by four points, IU sophomore Greg Schaefer posted a 6-1 upset over No. 3 Leroy Vega. Schaefer caught Vega off guard midway through the second period for a two-point take down. \nAs Vega tried to avoid the pin, Schaefer pushed his shoulder toward the mat. The clock bailed out Vega as time expired in the second period. The referee awarded Schaefer three points for a near fall extending his lead to 6-1. Schaefer would not relinquish the lead and was awarded the 6-1 decision bringing the crowd to their feet.\n"It does good for my confidence," Schaefer said. "It was a good win for me but it is just a stepping stone to Big Tens and Nationals."\nThe Schaefer victory would be the last for the Hoosiers in the dual. Minnesota went on to dominate the Hoosiers in every aspect. \nOnly Sveda and Schaefer recorded take downs for IU while the Gophers would routinely take down their opponents only to release them and dump them again. Minnesota recorded four major decisions in nine matches wrestled. IU was awarded six points for a forfeit at 141 lbs. when a Minnesota wrestler missed weight before the match. No Hoosier scored more than five points on any opponent.

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