The North Dakota State wrestling team will officially open its 2012-13 campaign on Saturday, Nov. 10 with the 42nd annual Bison Open. Action in the Bison Sports Arena is scheduled to start at 10 a.m.
Bison Open results will update throughout the day on Saturday on GoBison.com.
Along with North Dakota State, teams with individuals competing Saturday are expected to include: preseason No. 1 Minnesota, South Dakota State, MSU Moorhead, Concordia, Southwest Minnesota State, University of Mary, Jamestown College, Northern State and St. John’s University (Minn.).
Concordia begins the season ranked No. 14 in the NWCA Division III poll.
Rulon Gardner Event
Olympic gold medalist and world champion wrestler Rulon Gardner will speak at the Bison Sports Arena on Saturday at approximately 6 p.m. following the 42nd annual Bison Open. The event is presented by Legends of Gold National Training Center.
Tickets to the event are $15 and include Gardner’s speech, autographs and photos. Tickets are separate from, and do not include admission to, the Bison Open.
For tickets to the Gardner event, contact Terry Pack at (530) 305-3186 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To purchase tickets to the Bison Open, call (701) 231-NDSU or visit GoBison.com.
Head Coach Roger Kish
North Dakota State head coach Roger Kish will open his second season Saturday as the man in charge of the Bison wrestling program. In his first year (2011-12), Kish guided NDSU to a third-place team finish at the NCAA West Regional and sent three individuals to the NCAA Championships.
Kish was a two-time All-American (2006, 2007) and a national runner-up (2006) at 184 pounds for Minnesota.
Six Years Running
North Dakota State has come away from the Bison Open with at least one individual title for the past six seasons.
Recent NDSU Champions
2011 Kurtis Julson, 174
2010 Vince Salminen, 157
2009 Tyler Johnson, 165
Kenny Moenkedick, 184
2008 Kenny Moenkedick, 184
2007 Adam Aho, 157
2006 Eric Sanders, 133
Jacob Bryce, 197
While Kurtis Julson is the only active Bison wrestler who owns a Bison Open title, the North Dakota State coaching staff has won plenty. Between head coach Roger Kish, assistants Bret Maughan and Manny Rivera, and volunteer assistant Scott Glasser, the Bison coaches have combined to win 13 Bison Open championships.
Glasser captured three titles at 165 pounds from 2006-08 and two more at 174 pounds in 2009 and 2010 for five total titles. Kish won the Bison Open four times at 184 pounds between 2004 and 2007. Rivera claimed three championships at 141 pounds from 2005-07, and Maughan won the 1989 title at 126 pounds.
Kish, Rivera and Glasser all wrestled for the University of Minnesota, while Maughan was an All-American at NDSU.
Julson Back for More
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Sophomore Kurtis Julson returns in 2012 to defend the Bison Open title he won at 174 pounds in 2011. Julson was the lone Bison wrestler to win a championship at last year’s meet, but eight NDSU wrestlers placed in the top six of their respective weight classes. In addition, five unattached Bison wrestlers were also placewinners in 2011.
2011 NDSU Placewinners
125 Trent Sprenkle, 2nd
133 Justin Solberg, 5th
141 Tyler Diamond, 4th
149 Mark Erickson, 3rd
149 Joe Garner, 4th
149 Hayden Zillmer (unattached), 5th
157 Steven Monk, 2nd
157 Anthony Caputo (unattached), 4th
174 Kurtis Julson, 1st
184 Mac Stoll, 2nd
184 Kallen Kleinschmidt (unattached), 3rd
184 Kody Sorenson (unattached), 6th
197 John Gusewelle, 5th
285 Evan Knutson (unattached), 3rd
Bison in the Rankings
Trent Sprenkle (125)
9. Amateur Wrestling News
9. D1 College Wrestling
10. WIN Magazine
Steven Monk (165)
9. Amateur Wrestling News
11. D1 College Wrestling
14. WIN Magazine
Mac Stoll (184)
18. WIN Magazine
21. D1 College Wrestling
Including returning NCAA qualifiers Trent Sprenkle (125), Steven Monk (157/165) and Mac Stoll (184), the Bison bring back eight wrestlers with significant starting experience from last season.
Senior Tyler Diamond handled 14 of the 15 Bison duals last season at 141 pounds, and senior Mark Ericksonwrestled all 15 duals at 149 pounds. Joe Garner should get a chance to compete closer to his natural weight class of 157 after wrestling up at 174 for the majority of NDSU’s duals last season. Sophomores John Gusewelle (197) andEvan Knutson (285) wrestled all 15 duals a year ago.
In total, North Dakota State returns 119 of a possible 150 dual starters from 2011-12.
Welcome to the Show
The Bison welcomed 10 newcomers to the squad to fill out the first recruiting class of the Kish regime. A majority of the freshmen will wrestle at the lighter weights, with Clay Cathey, Grant Dullinger, Josh Rodriguez, Justin Scherkenbach, Hunter Weber and Devin Wolf all pegged at either 125 or 133 pounds this season.
Other additions to the roster include freshmen Dallen Brauer and Matthew Gray at 149 and 157 pounds, respectively,Colt Castlebury at 184, and redshirt freshman and Fargo native Tyler Lehmann, who will become eligible to compete at 197 pounds after the completion of the first semester.