BROOKINGS, S.D. – The South Dakota State University wrestling team begins the home stretch of the 2019-20 dual season by hosting a pair of duals this weekend at Frost Arena.

The duals kick off a regular season-ending three-match homestand for the Jackrabbits, who enter the weekend with a 10-5 overall record in duals, including a 5-2 mark in the Big 12 Conference. SDSU has won three duals in a row and nine of its last 11.

Saturday, the Jackrabbits will take on Big 12 opponent Fresno State. The Bulldogs enter the matchup 9-8 overall, including a 4-2 league mark after dropping a 28-7 decision at North Dakota State on Feb. 8.

SDSU will turn its attention to another program from the state of California on Sunday, hosting Stanford in nonconference action. The Cardinal, which is ranked 21st in this week’s National Wrestling Coaches Association poll, brings a 10-2 record into three duals in a four-day span this week. Stanford is slated to host Little Rock Thursday, before traveling to North Dakota State Saturday afternoon and concluding its road trip Sunday in Brookings.

Both of the Jackrabbits’ duals are slated for 6 p.m. starts and will be available for viewing at (subscription required). Saturday’s dual will be preceded by the Jackrabbit women’s basketball game against Purdue Fort Wayne at 1 p.m., while the Jackrabbit men’s basketball team will host Purdue Fort Wayne prior to Sunday’s contest at 2 p.m.

SERIES VERSUS FRESNO STATE: Saturday’s dual will mark the second meeting on the wrestling mat between South Dakota State and Fresno State.

The Bulldogs, who revived their program during the 2017-18 season after it was discontinued a decade earlier, claimed the initial meeting between the two squads in convincing fashion by winning 38-3 Jan. 20, 2019, in Fresno, California. FSU notched pins in three of the first four matches to set the tone.

Zach Carlson recorded the lone win for the Jackrabbits, posting a 4-3 decision over Jackson Hemauer in the 184-pound matchup. With the win, Carlson avenged a loss to Hemauer at the Midlands Championships three weeks earlier.

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Fresno State 38, South Dakota State 3 (Jan. 20, 2019)
125: Robert Garcia (FSU) def. Gregory Coapstick (SDSU), by fall 2:31
133: Gary Joint (FSU) major dec. Rylee Molitor (SDSU), 9-0
141: Christopher Deloza (FSU) def. Aric Williams (SDSU), by fall 4:44
149: #17 Khristian Olivas (FSU) def. #19 Henry Pohlmeyer (SDSU), by fall 3:39
157: Jacob Wright (FSU) dec. Colten Carlson (SDSU), 4-1
165: Isaiah Hokit (FSU) dec. Logan Peterson (SDSU), 11-5
174: Dominic Kincaid (FSU) dec. Samuel Grove (SDSU), 4-1
184: Zach Carlson (SDSU) dec. Jackson Hemauer (FSU), 4-3
197: #16 Josh Hokit (FSU) major dec. Martin Mueller (SDSU), 18-5
285: A.J. Nevills (FSU) dec. Blake Wolters (SDSU), 2-0

SERIES VERSUS STANFORD: The Jackrabbits will attempt to even the all-time series against Stanford as the two programs meet for the fourth time in dual competition. The Cardinal won each of the first two matchups at neutral sites, defeating SDSU 22-11 during the 2012-13 season in Columbia, Missouri, followed by a 20-14 Stanford win in San Luis Obispo, California, during the 2013-14 campaign.

SDSU broke into the win column with a hard-fought 17-15 victory over Stanford on Feb. 14, 2015, at Frost Arena. Each team won five matches, but Cody Pack’s 18-3 technical fall over Josh Lauderdale in the 157-pound bout proved to be the difference.

Other winners for the Jackrabbits were: Brance Simms (133), Luke Zilverberg (141), Alex Kocer (149) and Nate Rotert (197).

Watch Cardinals at Jackrabbits Live

BIG 12 SUCCESS: Now in its fifth season as an affiliate member of the Big 12 Conference for wrestling, South Dakota State has proven it can contend in one of the top wrestling leagues in the country.

Since joining the league at the start of the 2015-16 season, the Jackrabbits have combined to post a 29-12 record in duals against Big 12 opponents, with seven of those losses coming during the 2018-19 campaign. SDSU posted an 8-0 mark in Big 12 duals during the 2017-18 season.

The Jackrabbits also turned in back-to-back third-place efforts at the Big 12 Wrestling Championship in both 2017 and 2018, after a fourth-place finish at their inaugural league meet in 2016.

CARLSON COMES UP BIG IN DUALS: Senior 184-pounder Zach Carlson has been the Jackrabbits’ top performer in duals over the past two seasons. The Murdock, Minnesota, native has combined for a 21-7 dual record since becoming a full-time starter during the 2018-19 campaign. He led the squad with a 9-4 dual record as a junior and is a team-best 12-3 in duals so far this year.

His 21 dual wins have resulted in 86 team points for the Jackrabbits.

ANOTHER WINNING SEASON: South Dakota State secured its fifth winning season in the last six years with its 28-9 victory at Ohio on Feb. 9. The Jackrabbits have won 10 or more duals in each of their five winning seasons since the start of the 2014-15 campaign.

RABBITS RANKED: Five South Dakota State wrestlers appear in the NCAA Division I rankings compiled by a variety of media outlets.

Ranked throughout the season have been Henry Pohlmeyer at 149 pounds and Tanner Sloan at 197 pounds. A two-time NCAA qualifier and a senior from Johnston, Iowa, Pohlmeyer has been the big mover the past month, climbing to top-10 rankings by three organizations: WIN Magazine (eighth), FloWrestling (ninth) and TrackWrestling (ninth). He also is ranked 11th by Intermat.

Sloan, a redshirt freshman from Alburnett, Iowa, was ranked in the top 10 by three media outlets earlier in the season. He currently holds rankings by the same outlets as Pohlmeyer, ranging from 13th (WIN Magazine) to 18th (FloWrestling).

At 184 pounds, Zach Carlson has moved into all four rankings, including holding the eighth spot the WIN Magazine rankings. A senior from Murdock, Minnesota, Carlson also is ranked 16th by TrackWrestling and FloWrestling, and 17th by Intermat.

Also appearing in the rankings in recent weeks are 125-pounder Danny Vega and 165-pounder Tanner Cook. Vega, a junior who previously competed at Iowa State, is ranked as high as 14th by Intermat. He also stands 18th in the WIN Magazine rankings, 23rd by TrackWrestling and 24th by FloWrestling. He has an 8-3 mark in duals since entering the lineup Dec. 20 versus Minnesota.

Cook, a freshman from Ilion, New York, has solidified the 165-pound spot with a 13-3 overall record, including a 7-2 mark in duals since being inserted into the Jackrabbit lineup at the South Beach Duals in late December. Cook, who has a total of 11 wins by fall this season, is 26th in the TrackWrestling rankings for the third consecutive week. His nine pins against Division I competition rank in a tie for fourth among D-I wrestlers this season, while his average of 4.20 team points per match rank in a tie for ninth in the D-I Most Dominant Wrestler standings.

As a team, the Jackrabbits are ranked 22nd by WIN Magazine and 25th by Intermat in the organizations’ dual rankings. SDSU also has received votes in the NWCA Division I Coaches’ Poll in recent weeks.

A LOOK AHEAD: The Jackrabbits close out the dual season Feb. 21, hosting North Dakota State on Senior Night. Start time is 7 p.m. at Frost Arena.

From there, SDSU will compete in the Big 12 Conference Wrestling Championship March 7-8 at BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The two-day event serves as the qualifying tournament for the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships later in the month.

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