Hawkeyes Down Minnesota on Monday Night

IOWA CITY, Iowa – The fourth-ranked University of Iowa men’s wrestling team won seven of 10 matches to put up a 22-9 victory over Minnesota on Monday night on Mediacom Mat inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

No. 7 Drake Ayala opened the evening with a 8-5 decision over No. 18 Patrick McKee at 125. The Fort Dodge, Iowa, native overcame a first-period takedown and got out to a 5-3 lead before a third period takedown widened the gap.

The win was Ayala’s seventh against a ranked opponent this season.

“That is a quality opponent, and we don’t go to sleep on him,” said head coach Tom Brands. “Drake Ayala doesn’t go to sleep. Drake Ayala put himself back in that match after giving up that first takedown. Didn’t let the clock tick down, and then there is a mad panic crisis flurry scramble at the end, he put himself right back in the match.”

Freshman Kale Petersen made his Iowa and Carver-Hawkeye debut falling via a decision to No. 29 Tyler Wells, 6-4.

The Hawkeyes took two of the next three ranked matchups before intermission. Iowa won a decision by top-ranked Real Woods over No. 19 Vance VomBaur at 141, and a 7-3 decision by sophomore No. 12 Caleb Rathjen over No. 13 Richard Fedalen at 149.

Minnesota’s 11th ranked Michael Blockhus used late takedown to defeat No. 2 Jared Franek, 5-4, to hand Franek his first loss of the season and narrow the Hawkeye lead to 9-6 at the break.

“As I am getting better and developing my wrestling you get more precise with your decision making,” said Woods. “But there is also another part of it where it is a scrap, and implementing those two and balancing those two is an interesting recipe. Figuring that out and playing with that out on the mat is exciting and helps me grow.”

Iowa won four of the five matches after the break. No. 7 Michael Caliendo won a 5-1 decision over No. 30 Blake Brenner at 165, No. 14 Patrick Kennedy got the Hawkeyes bonus points with a 13-2 major decision over Sam Skillings at 174, and No. 18 Zach Glazier improved to 15-0 with a 4-2 decision over 24th ranked Garrett Joles at 197

Minnesota notched a win at 184 when No. 10 Isaiah Salazar won a 7-0 decision over Aiden Riggins.

Dual-sport athlete and freshman Ben Kueter made his Hawkeye and Carver-Hawkeye debut at 285 pounds. The Iowa City, Iowa, native notched his first collegiate win with a 5-3 decision over 29th ranked Bennett Tabor.

“I think there were a lot of people out in those seats that were happy to see Kueter go out and get the win,” said Brands. “I think everyone was happy about it except Kueter. He didn’t like how he performed, and we are moving forward. I like that, never satisfied.”

“It just been something you dream of,” said Kueter. “I’ve been dreaming of this as a kid from a young age, and now to get to do it is surreal. I just wanted to make sure I was focused on wrestling and not all the distractions, but it is still pretty cool.”

The victory moves Iowa’s dual record to 7-0 and 2-0 in Big Ten Conference action. The Hawkeyes host Purdue on Friday at 7 p.m.

“We need to widen the gap,” said Brands. “No doubt.”


  • The Hawkeyes were wrestling a dual meet at Carver-Hawkeye arena on a Monday for the first time since February 22, 2016, when they wrestled NC State as part of the National Duals.
  • Kale Petersen and Ben Kueter both made their Hawkeye and Carver-Hawkeye Arena debuts. Petersen previously competed unattached at the Soldier Salute.
  • Iowa has won the last 10 meetings with Minnesota including five straight at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
  • Zach Glazier and Real Woods improved their undefeated records to 15-0 and 11-0, respectively.

#3 Iowa 22, #10 Minnesota 9
125 – #5 Drake Ayala (I) dec. #18 Patrick McKee (M), 8-5
133 – #29 Tyler Wells (M) dec. Kale Petersen (I), 6-4
141 – #1 Real Woods (I) dec. #19 Vance VomBaur (M), 5-2
149 – #12 Caleb Rathjen (I) dec. #13 Drew Roberts (M), 7-3
157 – #11 Michael Blockhus (M) dec. #2 Jared Franek (I), 5-4
165 – #7 Michael Caliendo (I) dec. #30 Blaine Brenner (M), 5-1
174 – Patrick Kennedy (I) major dec. Sam Skillings (M), 13-2
184 – #10 Isaiah Salazar (M) dec. Aiden Riggins (I), 7-0
197 – #16 Zach Glazier (I) dec. #24 Garrett Joles (M), 4-2
285 – Ben Kueter (I) dec. #29 Bennet Tabor (M), 5-3

Attendance: 14,847
Officials: Curt Frost, Matt Zeitz