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Eric Peterson / epeterson@forumcomm.com, Published January 20 2012

Cobbers fall to D-II No. 1 St. Cloud State

MOORHEAD – Concordia associate head coach Matt Nagel was more concerned with his team’s mindset than the result Friday at Memorial Auditorium.

Ranked No. 1 in NCAA Division II, St Cloud State powered its way to a 33-6 victory against the Cobbers in nonconference college wrestling.

“I think the biggest thing for me is I don’t want our guys to come in here and roll over,” Nagel said. “I wanted them to face an opponent with a thought that they could go in and win. I think they all thought that they could win.”

St. Cloud State (15-0) remained unbeaten against the Cobbers, who are ranked No. 15 in Division III.

“The biggest mindset we have is that we want to get better,” said Cobbers head coach Clay Nagel. “When you wrestle cupcakes, you’re not going to get better.”

The Cobbers (4-7) earned wins in two of the 10 matches against the Huskies, who have a dual at Minnesota State Moorhead at 2 p.m.

St. Cloud State head coach Steve Costanzo liked what Concordia brought to the mat Friday night.

“It not only makes them better by wrestling us, it makes us better by wrestling them,” Costanzo said. “We’re just looking for great competition. Both Nagels are going a good job and those guys are tough. I was pretty worried about this dual coming into it.”

The Cobbers have had duals against nine opponents that are ranked in either D-II or D-III to this point. By the end of the regular season, Concordia is scheduled to have faced 12 ranked teams in its 16 duals.

The Cobbers have faced two top five D-II opponents this week. No. 5 Augustana earned a 22-18 victory at Concordia on Sunday. Clay Nagel said there are two reasons he schedules teams like St. Cloud State and Augustana – one, to get better; two, because they are regional opponents that are willing to wrestle at Concordia. Nagel’s goal is to goal is to schedule at least four home duals per season.

“I just thought it was a great opportunity for our kids to see quality wrestling and to compete at a high level,” Clay Nagel said. “If you want to become an All-American or national champion, you have to compete at a high level.”

Concordia junior Josten Coleman earned a 7-6 decision Friday at 165 pounds against Huskies freshman Dan Dick, who had a 16-6 record entering the dual. Coleman (8-9) earned a riding time point in the final seconds of the third period to secure the victory.

“We’ve been wrestling tough teams all year. It only makes us better,” said Coleman, who is from Oakes, N.D. “We just keep fighting and fighting and by the team regions come around, we’ll be ready.”

Coleman said he’s tweaked his style of late, focusing on positioning and defense, trying to wrestle closer matches.

“It’s been working well,” Coleman said. “It definitely boosts the confidence. I keep using each win and each loss as something to build off.”

Coleman’s win cut the Huskies lead to 16-6, but St. Cloud State countered by winning the final four matches. The Huskies have wrestlers who are ranked No. 3 or higher in D-II at 174, 184, 197 and 285.

“I thought it was one of those deals where it was just they are better,” Matt Nagel said. “They are little more experienced, a little strong and have a little better technique. … We need to take away that we can be there someday, but we have to work at it.”

125: Wright, SCSU, won by forfeit.

133: Hohbein, CC, dec. Pokorny 7-5.

141: Hildreth, SCSU, major dec. Holman 14-4.

149: Howk, SCSU, dec. LeDuc 4-3.

157: Horn, SCSU, dec. Long 8-1.

165: Coleman, CC, dec. Dick 7-6.

174: Merritt, SCSU, pinned Gardner 2:08.

184: Skala, SCSU, major dec. Deffinbaugh 15-5.

197: Munkelwitz, SCSU, dec. Schmitz 5-3.

285: Kahnke, SCSU, major dec. Kasprick 10-2.

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Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.

Peterson’s blog can be found

at peterson.areavoices.com