Matchup Monday: Bout #6


Hahn dec. Dean 67-33


Last week Oklahoma State’s 165 pounder, Alex Dieringer defeated the Cowboys former 165 pounder Johnny Hendricks in bout #5 of Matchup Monday. This week, for bout #6 we decided to keep the theme going with another past vs. present matchup between two wrestlers from the same team, but there’s a slight twist. NCAA Champion Gabe Dean, a junior from the Big Red of Cornell University will be taking on the former Minnesota Gopher, 2x NCAA Champion and current assistant coach for Cornell University, Damion Hahn! 

Note: Voters poll is towards the bottom for those of you who aren’t the reading type.

Tale of the Tape

photo of matchup monday bout #6

Damion Hahn

After red shirting his first year with the Gophers, Damiaon Hahn wasted no time achieving all-american status. He took 5th place at the NCAA tournament as a freshman at 184 lbs, and  all-americaned again as a sophomore with yet another 5th place finish at 184 lbs. Hahn decided to move up to 197 lbs as a Junior where he finally won his first NCAA Championship in dramatic fashion .  After beating the #2 seed Muhammed Lawal of Oklahoma State in a barn burner by a score of 4-3 in the semi-finals, he followed it up with a 5-4 win in the final seconds over John Trenge of Lehigh in what is known as one of the most epic NCAA finals of all time. While Damion Hahn’s first run to a national title exemplified the phrase  “if there is time on the clock there is time to wrestle” he gave himself a little more breathing room the second time around, defeating Ryan Fulsaas (Iowa) by a score of 7-2 to capture his second NCAA  title before graduating as the 2004 Big Ten  Male Athlete of the Year .

Gabe Dean

Then we have Gabe Dean, who also wasted no time becoming an all-american in his freshman year, placing 3rd at the NCAA tournament for the big Red. Dean’s only loss of the tournament came in the semi-finals to one of the best pound for pound wrestlers in the nation at the time, Ed Ruth; a loss which put Ruth ahead 2-1 in the series after Dean broke his 84 match win streak at the Southern scuffle to earn himself the  top seed at the national tournament as a true freshman. While finishing the season top 3 in the nation  is impressive for anyone let alone a freshman, Dean had no intentions on finishing his sophomore year the same way. After finishing his freshman season with a record of 42-3 he completed his sophomore season 43-2 a slight improvement from the year before. However, this time he went on to win a national title with a commanding 6-2 victory over Nathaniel Brown of Lehigh, and was named the 2015 EIWA and Ivy league wrestler of the year.

It is scary to think that as dominant as Gabe Dean has been he still has two years left in his collegiate career. While Damion Hahn moved up to 197 lbs after two years competing at 184 there is a good chance Dean will stay at that weight. Fortunatley, at Matchup Monday we can create the hypothetical situation where Dean has decided to bulk up even more and make a run at the 197 lb title. While I’m sure Damion Han has played a huge role in molding Gabe Dean into the national champion he is today, what would happen if Hahn were to cross paths with the likes of Gabe Dean in his college days? Would he still be a 2x national champion? Would the “if there’s time on the clock there’s time to wrestle” mentality take Hahn on  another thrilling ride to a national title or would Dean’s relentless attack shut down his ability to pull ahead and win in just  the nick of time?

Please clear the mats! Viewers when you are ready you may cast your votes.

The winner will be announced this Friday. Follow us on twitter to stay up to date on who is in the lead throughout the week.

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