MINNEAPOLIS – No. 4 Minnesota blazed past No. 7 Virginia Tech 28-8 to advance to the semifinals of the 2013 NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals on Friday at Williams Arena. The Gophers won eight of 10 bouts en route to the victory that sets up Saturday’s rematch against conference rival Iowa.
Virginia Tech scored first with a win at 125 pounds. Jarrod Garnett bested David Thorn by a 10-7 decision. Then Minnesota started rolling. Chris Dardanes came out strong at 133 pounds against Erik Spjut and earned takedown after takedown to build to a 14-4 advantage for the major. Nick Dardanes followed and although he narrowly missed the major, he ran away with the 9-2 win against Zach Neibert.
At 149 pounds, Dylan Ness ignited the crowd by edging Nick Brascett, 7-6. Brascetta came into the weekend with the No. 6 ranking while Ness is No. 11. Ness made it a tough match to follow but Danny Zilverberg rose to the challenge. The 157-pound Zilverberg pulled a major upset in the middle weight class. With the help of a takedown and a reversal, Zilverberg shutout No. 6 Jesse Dong 5-0.
The Hokies improved their score to eight with help from Pete Yates at 165 pounds. Yates tallied an 18-2 technical fall versus Minnesota’s Cody Yohn.
In ritualistic fashion, Minnesota’s top four heavyweights won out the remainder of the dual. First, Logan Storley scored an 8-2 decision against Austin Gabel. Then Kevin Steinhaus marked his third pin of the season, first in dual action, against Nick Vetterlein at 4:33. Scott Schiller and Tony Nelson brought the night to a close, each notching decision victories versus their respective opponents. Schiller pulled out a 9-7 win against Derrick Borlie, while Nelson bested David Marone with a 4-0 mark.
Minnesota will get a rematch against Iowa, which beat the Gophers 16-15 on criteria in a regular-season match, in the semifinal round. The Hawkeyes edged Cornell 21-16 in the quarterfinals.