EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – The SIUE wrestling team have a challenging weekend of events planned, including the regular season home opener Sunday against No. 20 Purdue.
"It's going to a real, tough weekend," said SIUE Head Coach Jeremy Spates.
The Cougars begin action Saturday at the Joe Parisi Open at Lindenwood in St. Charles, Mo. The tournament will be divided into two sections for the first time.
"Our true freshmen are competing in the freshman-sophomore group. Everyone else is competing in the open event," Spates said.
Missouri, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State are expected to send some wrestlers to the tournament. Spates said 12 SIUE wrestlers will compete as well as five more from the roster who will be at the event wrestling unattached.
Purdue is 1-0 heading into the weekend and faces second-ranked Minnesota on the road Friday night. Two Purdue wrestlers are ranked in the top 20 in the country. They are 125-pounder Camden Eppert (18th) and 197-pounder Braden Atwood (16th).
"With a Big Ten team coming in on Sunday, it should be interesting," said Spates. "I'm hoping we can improve on our performance from last week and get some wins."
Spates said the Cougars had some technical issues that were addressed in practice this week after starting out the season with losses to Ouachita Baptist, Illinois, and Arizona State. Still, the first-year head coach found areas in which he was pleased.
"Even some of the matches (last weekend) that we lost we scored at the end. I was happy with that," he added.
Expected Lineup vs. Purdue