Deakin’s Heroics Lead #20 Northwestern to Win Over #14 Minnesota

By Northwestern Athletics

MINNEAPOLIS — #5 Ryan Deakin (149) needed some bonus points to help his Wildcats beat #14 Minnesota on Sunday afternoon on the road at Maturi Pavilion. He got a pin.

For #20 Northwestern (8-2, 3-2 Big Ten), it was their first second win over a ranked squad in this upstart campaign. It was also NU’s first victory over the Golden Gophers since January 20, 1996.

Deakin improved to 24-3 in his rookie campaign with his team-high sixth pin of the season, coming in only 2:45 against Benjamin Brancale. Deakin also is a perfect 10-0 in dual competition.

The Wildcats got back-to-back wins from #18 Johnny Sebastian (174) and Mitch Sliga (184) to start the dual, both via decisions. NU trailed by only two team points after Sliga’s 7-2 win over the Golden Gophers’ Dylan Anderson.

After intermission, Conan Jennings (285) came back with a vengeance to lead the Wildcats’ surge. He shut out Minnesota’s Rylee Streifel, 11-0, to earn the major decision and four team points.

Wrestling against Steven Polakowski, #10 Sebastian Rivera (125) continued NU’s momentum. He dominated the Golden Gopher grappler from start-to-finish, earning another Wildcat major decision — this one an 11-3 final. That gave Northwestern a 14-11 lead and improved Rivera’s season mark to a sterling 20-1.

Deakin’s final-bout pin of Brancale lifted NU to their 20-18 win over Minnesota.

This win was Northwestern’s highest ranked victory since topping #14 Stanford, 27-8, on November 5, 2011.

Chicago’s Big Ten Team improved to 3-2 in Big Ten competition with the victory. Northwestern’s only two setbacks have come via a one-point loss to #14 Illinois and a tiebreaking criteria decision to #18 Nebraska.

NU is back at home next Friday, February 2, against #18 Rutgers in the home finale at historic Patten Gymnasium. Tickets are available at (888) GO-PURPLE or on

#20 Northwestern 20, #14 Minnesota 18
Evanston, Ill. | Maturi Pavilion | Jan. 28, 2018

157: #18 Jake Short (MINN) maj. dec. Shayne Oster (NU), 18-6 | MINN 4, NU 0
165: #7 Nick Wanzek (MINN) maj. dec. Michael Sepke (NU), 14-3 | MINN 8, NU 0
174: #18 Johnny Sebastian (NU) dec. Christopher Pfarr (MINN), 3-1 | MINN 8, NU 3
184: Mitch Sliga (NU) dec. Dylan Anderson (MINN), 7-2 | MINN 8, NU 6
197: Brandon Krone (MINN) dec. Zack Chakonis (NU), 8-4 | MINN 11, NU 6
285: Conan Jennings (NU) maj. dec. Rylee Streifel (MINN), 11-0 | MINN 11, NU 10
125: #10 Sebastian Rivera (NU) maj. dec. Steven Polakowski (MINN), 11-3 | NU 14, MINN 11
133: #12 Mitchell McKee (MINN) dec. #20 Colin Valdiviez (NU), 10-7 | NU 14, MINN 14
141: #10 Tommy Thorn (MINN) maj. dec. Alec McKenna (NU), 13-3 | MINN 18, NU 14
149: #5 Ryan Deakin (NU) Fall Benjamin Brancale (MINN), 2:45 | NU 20, MINN 18

What do you think?

175 Points
Upvote Downvote

Written by Mike Bare

Leave a Reply

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings

Illini Tilt Terrapins, Win 10th Straight At Huff

Up-and-coming Marian Central Catholic wins its first ESCC title