Maryland wrestling had its best Big Ten dual match result of the 2017-18 on Sunday afternoon against No. 19 Minnesota, but the Terps still came up short against the Golden Gophers, 26-22.
This was the second consecutive conference dual where Maryland (4-11, 0-9 Big Ten) split matches with its opponent, winning five against Illinois and five against Minnesota. Each time, however, bonus points for major decisions have made the difference.
The Golden Gophers (6-7, 3-5 Big Ten) come out on top thanks to bonus points—two pins and two technical falls, to be exact. The Terps countered with a pin of their own from Ryan Diehl (149 lbs.) and two major decisions, but fell just short. Diehl’s pin was his third of the season, a shocking upset over No. 14 Tommy Thorn, and his second-consecutive dual win by way of pin.
Minnesota threw out five ranked wrestlers in the first six matches, going 4-1 in those matches. Those five matches decided the overall dual.
For the Terps, No. 7 heavyweight Youssif Hemida won his team-leading eighth conference match of the season in sudden victory, a 3-1 decision over Rylee Streifel.
Maryland’s last two conference duals have been its best of the season, a definite confidence booster for the last two duals of the season—both at home against non-conference foes—and the postseason.
The Terps stay in College Park for their last dual meet of the season, a tri-dual with Rider and Ohio on Feb. 18th. Then, it’s the Big Ten Championships at Michigan State on March 3rd and March 4th.