SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- Senior Bailey Neises used a last-second takedown to force extra time in the 165 pound bout against Western Colorado on Thursday night. The senior then delivered a takedown within 15 seconds to win in sudden victory amidst an electric atmosphere in the Elmen Center as the Vikings defeated No. 23 Western Colorado 24-12.
Neises’ win powered the Vikings to a 12-9 lead, one which they would not surrender the rest of the night. Junior Ben Kelvington, now ranked No. 8 at 174 pounds in Division II, followed Neises’ performance with a 5-2 win, before sophomore Daniel Bishop brought the house down with a match clinching pin at 1:33 at 197 pounds.
Redshirt-freshman Steven Hajas finished the match with a convincing 11-6 victory at 285 pounds to bring the final score to 24-12.
Earlier in the match, the Vikings also got wins from redshirt-freshmen Jack Huffman at 133 pounds, Hunter Burnett, now No. 11 in Division II, at 141 pounds and Jacob Tvinnereim at 157 pounds.
It’s the second time this season that the Vikings have defeated a nationally-ranked opponent. The Vikings previously topped then-No. 2 Nebraska-Kearney by a score of 25-12 on Dec. 20.
125: Patrick Allis (WCU) over Ethan Cota (AUG) (Fall 4:42)
133: Jack Huffman (AUG) over Cody Fatzinger (WCU) (Dec 9-7)
141: Hunter Burnett (AUG) over Jason Hanenberg (WCU) (Dec 4-0)
149: Giovanni Cassioppi (WCU) over Keaten Schorr (AUG) (Dec 6-2)
157: Jacob Tvinnereim (AUG) over Cole Mortenson (WCU) (Dec 8-2)
165: Bailey Neises (AUG) over Michael Thelen (WCU) (SV-1 6-4)
174: Ben Kelvington (AUG) over James Laconte (WCU) (Dec 5-2)
184: Ruger Wyneken (WCU) over Jackson Sweeney (AUG) (SV-1 8-6)
197: Daniel Bishop (AUG) over Kris Davis (WCU) (Fall 1:33)
285: Steven Hajas (AUG) over Sammy Deseriere (WCU) (Dec 11-6)
The Vikings compete in their fifth, and final, tournament of the season on Saturday at the Viking-Warrior Open in Fremont, Nebraska. Midland University hosts the tournament and wrestling will start at 9 a.m.