No. 15 South Dakota State beats No. 6 Michigan, 22-17 in Sioux Falls

by South Dakota State Athletics

Derrick Cardinal (SDSU) celebrates after his victory by pin against Michigan. (Photo by Sanford Sports Complex/SDSU Athletics)

SIOUX FALLS — South Dakota State and Michigan each won five matches, but the Jackrabbits notched four bonus-point victories to carry them to a 22-17 dual victory in a battle between top-15 teams Thursday night before a crowd of 2,740 at the Sanford Pentagon.

The 15th-ranked Jackrabbits improved to 4-2 overall in picking up their second win over a top-10 team in the last three seasons. Sixth-ranked Michigan dropped to 2-1 in duals.

SDSU never trailed, getting out of the gates quickly by building a 9-0 lead through the first two bouts against a pair of Wolverine backups. Tanner Jordan posted a methodical 5-3 victory over Christian Tanefeu at 125 pounds, recording the match-winning takedown midway through the third period.

Derrick Cardinal, ranked 15th at 133 pounds, followed with what would be the only pin of the night by either squad, sticking Nolan Wertanen's shoulders to the mat in 6 minutes and 39 seconds. Cardinal was already on track for bonus points by holding an 11-2 lead before his final takedown that led to his third win by fall of the season.

In the first matchup of the night between ranked wrestlers, 30th-ranked Sergio Lemley of Michigan knocked off 14th-ranked and returning 141-pound All-American Clay Carlson, 6-4. Carlson, who returned to the lineup last week after sitting out the first two months of the season due to injury, held a 4-2 lead early in the third period before being penalized for stalling and giving up the decisive takedown down the stretch.

Michigan claimed another match between ranked wrestlers in the 149-pound matchup as No. 7 Austin Gomez turned in a 10-4 decision over 18th-ranked Alek Martin of SDSU.

Cael Swensen closed the first half of the dual with another bonus-point victory, earning a 13-2 major decision at 157 pounds against Zack Mattin. Swensen built an 8-1 lead through one period, picking up a takedown and two-point near-fall in the closing seconds of the opening stanza to cruise to the victory.

The Wolverines pulled to within a single point at 13-12 by opening the second half of the with a pair of decisions. Freshman 165-pounder Beau Mantanona edged SDSU's Tanner Cook, 4-2, while the 174-pound matchup between No. 3 Cade DeVos of the Jackrabbits and fifth-ranked Shane Griffith wasn't decided until overtime.

After a scoreless opening period, Griffth and DeVos traded escapes in the second and third period, respectively, for the only scoring in regulation. In the extra session, Griffith came up with the lone takedown to come away with the 4-1 sudden victory, handing DeVos his first loss of the season (9-1).

The 184-pound bout between No. 11 Jaden Bullock of Michigan and SDSU's Bennett Berge proved to be the swing match of the night. The 26th-ranked Berge was the aggressor early, posting a pair of first-period takedowns for a 6-1 lead. Berge maintained the pressure for the full seven minutes, adding takedowns in each of the final two periods to tally a 14-5 major decision.

Fifth-ranked Tanner Sloan sealed the dual victory for the Jackrabbits with another dominating performance, needing only 3 minutes and 18 seconds to record a 17-1 technical fall over Brendin Yatooma. Sloan followed each of his two first-period takedowns with a four-point near-fall, then ended the match early with another takedown 18 seconds into the second period.

Michigan heavyweight Lucas Davison, ranked fourth, closed the dual with a technical fall of his own over the Jackrabbits' Luke Rasmussen.


South Dakota State is slated to compete Jan. 12-13 at the Virginia Duals in Hampton, Virginia. The Jackrabbits are slated to open the two-day event by facing Kent State at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time on Jan. 12 at the Hampton Coliseum.


125: #18 Tanner Jordan (SDSU) dec. Christian Tanefeu (MICH), 5-3

133: #15 Derrick Cardinal (SDSU) def. Nolan Wertanen (MICH), by fall 6:39

141: #30 Sergio Lemley (MICH) dec. #14 Clay Carlson (SDSU), 6-4

149: #7 Austin Gomez (MICH) dec. #18 Alek Martin (SDSU), 10-4

157: #16 Cael Swensen (SDSU) major dec. Zack Mattin (MICH), 13-2

165: Beau Mantanona (MICH) dec. #27 Tanner Cook (SDSU), 4-2

174: #5 Shane Griffith (MICH) dec. #3 Cade DeVos (SDSU), 4-1 [SV-1]

184: #26 Bennett Berge (SDSU) major dec. #11 Jaden Bullock (MICH), 14-5

197: #5 Tanner Sloan (SDSU) tech. fall Brendin Yatooma (MICH), 17-1 [3:18]

285: #4 Lucas Davison (MICH) tech. fall #33 Luke Rasmussen (SDSU), 20-4 [5:57]


* Thursday's dual marked the first-ever meeting between SDSU and Michigan

* The Jackrabbits' other recent top-10 win was a 21-12 victory at No. 9 Missouri during the 2021-22 season

* Cardinal's victory was his 14th of the season, tying him for the team lead with Daniel Kimball

* Berge's win was his first dual victory for the Jackrabbits

* Sloan improved to 95-21 overall, including 53-4 in dual matches

* SDSU wrestled at the Sanford Pentagon for the first time since the 2019-20 season