No. 21 ranked Stanford wrestling (0-1, 0-0 Pac-12) will take on California Baptist (2-0, 0-0 RMAC) and CSU Bakersfield (2-1, 0-0 Pac-12) on Saturday in two consecutive matches. These matches will mark the home openers for the Cardinal wrestling season, the first two in a total of seven home matches.
The Cardinal are coming off of a tough defeat at the hands of No. 9 ranked Virginia Tech, but will face far easier opponents this weekend. Both the California Baptist Lancers and the CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners are unranked. The Lancers have zero players ranked in the NCAA rankings, while the Roadrunners have three.
The toughest individual opponent on the combined rosters is the Roadrunners’ No. 11 ranked 197-pound Matt Williams. Williams will most likely match up with redshirt freshman David Traxler on Saturday. Traxler was thrashed by Virginia Tech, but he had an incredible upset during the Hokie Open, during which he defeated the now No. 10 ranked 197-pound wrestler, Daniel Chaid.
Keep an eye on the performance of promising 149-pound redshirt freshman Requir van der Merwe, who almost upset his opponent in his Cardinal debut against Virginia Tech. Van der Merwe will look to cement his role in the roster and support the Cardinal this weekend.
As always, the Cardinal standouts will look to climb the NCAA ranks on Saturday with individual victories. No. 9 ranked 125-pound redshirt senior Connor Schram is 4-0 on the season, and hopes to stay undefeated this weekend. No. 11 ranked redshirt junior Paul Fox is another solid Cardinal starter at the 157-pound spot.
The action begins on Saturday at 2 p.m., versus California Baptist, with the match against CSU Bakersfield to begin at 3:30 p.m.
Contact Bobby Pragada at bpragada “at” stanford.edu