Jan. 17, 1998

Spartans Advance to Semi-Finals at National Team Championships

Unranked MSU Downs Two Ranked Opponents

EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State University wrestling team won its first two dual matches at the National Team Championships on Saturday. The Spartans will face No.1 seed Minnesota late on Saturday in the semifinals of the 16-team tournament, being held at the University of Iowa.

In the first match of the day, MSU defeated No.4 seed and eighth-ranked Oklahoma, 19-12. Senior captain David Morgan, the No. 1 ranked wrestler at 118 pounds, started the match with a 5-3 decision over No. 8 Shane Valdez, and Michigan State never trailed while winning five of the remaining nine matches.

In the second round, MSU faced No. 5 seed and sixth-ranked Arizona State. Morgan again got the Spartans going, this time with a 7-4 win over No. 11 Michael Kawamura. Michigan State won the next three matches of the dual, and six of the final nine, en route to a convincing 27-9 win.

Along with Morgan, freshmen Pat McNamara and Nick Curry, sophomore Will Hill, and junior Greg DeGrand each won their first two matches of the day.

The Spartans wrestle in the semi-finals late on Saturday, and should they win, they will advance to the finals at 1 p.m. on Sunday.