Four Johnnies Place at Large Minnesota West Open

WORTHINGTON, Minn. – Four Saint John’s wrestlers found the podium on Saturday, Jan. 20, at the Minnesota West C.T.C. Open in Worthington.

The unseeded tournament consisted of 221 wrestlers, of which the majority hailed from scholarship programs at the Division I, Division II and NAIA levels. The 10 Johnnies combined to wrestle only two Division III opponents on the day (both from Concordia-Moorhead).

Junior Luke Dodd (Apple Valley, Minn./Eastview) went 4-1 at 184 pounds to take fifth place. He started his day with a 7-6 win over Division II St. Cloud State’s Riley Vanik, but fell to Braiden Nelson (8-3) of Division II Northern State (S.D.) in the quarterfinal. Dodd, who is ranked as high as seventh nationally (NWCA) at 184 pounds, bounced back with three straight wins to claim fifth and improve to 10-7 on the season.

Sophomore Quincy Spiering (Mounds View, Minn./St. Thomas Academy), like Dodd, also went 4-1 to finish fifth at heavyweight. His four wins consisted of three pins and an 8-0 major decision over Iowa Central C.C.’s Jordan Hill in the fifth-place match. Spiering now touts an 8-3 record on the year.

Two SJU sophomores, Noah Becker (Browerville, Minn.) and Jerod Novak (Aitkin, Minn.), were scheduled to wrestle in seventh-place matches but the bouts were canceled. Becker went 2-2 at 125 pounds, with both losses decided by a 3-2 margin to Kahlen Morris of Division I South Dakota State. Becker is now 17-6 this season. Novak, meanwhile, posted a 3-2 mark at 157 pounds to improve to 12-9 on the year.

The Johnnies travel to face Concordia for a 7 p.m. dual on Tuesday, Jan. 23, in Moorhead.

Worthington Open Results

-Noah Becker (Eighth, 2-2)

-Andrew Smith (1-2)

-Anthony Hennen (1-2)

-Jerod Novak (Eighth, 3-2)

-Brady Mehr (0-2)

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-Dan Gainer (1-2)

-Luke Dodd (Fifth, 4-1)

-Dominic Skawiniak (1-2)

-Quincy Spiering (Fifth, 4-1)
-Ben Ungar (0-2)

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