Iowa State wrestling coach Kevin Dresser recaps the Cyclones’ performance at the Southern Scuffle
Cody Goodwin, firstname.lastname@example.org
Add Wednesday night’s conference-opening dual as the latest example that the Iowa State wrestling team is on the upswing.
The Cyclones defeated host North Dakota State, 29-7, at the Scheels Center in Fargo. Iowa State, ranked 18th nationally by Trackwrestling, is now 3-1 overall and 1-0 in the Big 12 Conference. The Bison dropped to 6-4 and 2-3.
A year ago, Iowa State won six of 10 matches but needed a criteria point to edge NDSU, 21-20. The Bison scored 17 points by way of pin, technical fall and forfeit before the Cyclones roared back by winning the final five bouts in that meeting.
The Cyclones left no doubt Wednesday. An Iowa State lineup featuring seven wrestlers that didn’t compete against the Bison last season ultimately took eight matches to breeze to its first road victory of the 2018-19 season.
Iowa State held decisive advantages in total match points (80-55) and total takedowns (28-5). Chase Straw, Willie Miklus and Jarrett Degen all provided bonus points — Straw with a 17-8 major decision over Nick Knutson at 157 pounds; Miklus with a first-period pin over Cordell Eaton at 197; and Degen with a 16-5 major over Jaden Van Maanen at 149.
There were also a few matches of intrigue. At 285 pounds, Gannon Gremmel and Brandon Metz squared off in a rematch of last spring’s UWW Junior freestyle national finals. Iowa State’s Gremmel won by technical fall then. On Wednesday, he won by 7-3 decision.
At 133, Austin Gomez, ranked No. 9 nationally, faced No. 18 Cam Sykora in the only all-ranked matchup of the night. Gomez took a 4-1 lead after the first, but Sykora led 5-4 after the second thanks to a tilt that scored four back points. Gomez forced overtime with a late takedown in the third, then won it 8-6 with a takedown seconds into the extra period.
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At 141, Ryan Leisure got the nod in lieu of Ian Parker, who suffered a concussion at the Southern Scuffle last week. Iowa State coach Kevin Dresser said Parker, ranked 12th nationally, would be a “game-time decision” earlier this week. He opted for Leisure, who scored two takedowns and two reversals in an 8-7 win over Sawyer Degen, the younger brother of Jarrett Degen.
At 165 pounds, Logan Schumacher made his Cyclone debut. The Martensdale-St. Mary’s product won a 5-man wrestle-off over the weekend to man the spot in the short term as Skyler St. John and Brady Jennings both battle injuries. The true freshman dropped an 11-0 major decision to No. 21-ranked Andrew Fogarty.
The Cyclones’ only other loss came at 125 pounds. A third-period reversal sent Iowa State’s Alex Mackall to overtime with Brent Fleetwood, ranked No. 8 nationally. Mackall’s upset bid fell short when Fleetwood scored a takedown in sudden victory to win 4-2.
The Cyclones host Fresno State (4-5, 1-2) at Hilton Coliseum on Sunday at 2 p.m.
Cody Goodwin covers wrestling and high school sports for the Des Moines Register. Follow him on Twitter at @codygoodwin.
No. 18 Iowa State 29, North Dakota State 7
157: Chase Straw (ISU) maj. dec. Nick Knutson (NDSU), 17-8
165: No. 21 Andrew Fogarty (NDSU) maj. dec. Logan Schumacher (ISU), 11-0
174: No. 24 Marcus Coleman (ISU) dec. Lorenzo De La Riva (NDSU), 8-7
184: No. 16 Sam Colbray (ISU) dec. Michael Otomo (NDSU), 10-3
197: No. 4 Willie Miklus (ISU) over Cordell Eaton (NDSU) by fall in 2:53
285: Gannon Gremmel (ISU) dec. Brandon Metz (NDSU), 7-3
125: No. 8 Brent Fleetwood (NDSU) dec. Alex Mackall (ISU), 4-2 (SV1)
133: No. 9 Austin Gomez (ISU) dec. No. 18 Cam Sykora (NDSU), 8-6 (SV1)
141: Ryan Leisure (ISU) dec. Sawyer Degen (NDSU), 8-7
149: No. 8 Jarrett Degen (ISU) maj. dec. Jaden Van Maanen (NDSU), 16-5
Source: Des Moines Register