photo courtesy of Nate Billings; The Oklahoman
Over 13,000 fans gathered in historic Gallagher-Iba Arena on Sunday afternoon to watch the host Oklahoma State Cowboys down rival Iowa 27-12 on the final day of the regular season. It didn’t take long for the home crowd to erupt as fourth-ranked 125 lber Nick Piccininni used a cradled to pin defending NCAA champion, Spencer Lee. The two had met twice last season, including once in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championships, where Lee has pinned Piccininni. This time the 125 lbers battled to a scoreless first period, though both wrestlers get in deep on leg attacks. Piccininni struck first with a second-period escape, after taking bottom on the dangerous Lee, but not after letting the Hawkeye accumulate more than a minute of riding time. Nick then kept on the offensive and got on a single leg at the edge of the mat and then locked up the cradle and flattened Lee. The fall put the Cowboys in command 6-0 in what was thought to be a tight dual meet.
The crowd had no time to die down as the second bout, between 133 lbers Daton Fix (Oklahoma State) and Austin DeSanto (Iowa) was just as highly anticipated as the first. Fix used an escape and riding time to shut down DeSanto 2-0. It was only the second loss of the season for Iowa’s controversial 133 lber. Just like last Saturday when the Cowboys knocked Missouri from the ranks of the unbeaten, OSU was led by their senior class who won the final four matches of the day against Iowa. 174 lber Chandler Rogers locked up Mitch Bowman in an assassin for the third-period pin, 184 lber Jacobe Smith picked up a hard-fought 6-3 win over 13th ranked Cash Wilcke. In a battle of top-six 197 lbers, Preston Weigel gutted out a 5-3 victory over freshman Jacob Warner. The cherry on top for OSU was Derek White reversing a 2017-18 dual loss to Sam Stoll at the 285 lb weight class, 3-1. The other Cowboy who got his hand raised was Kaid Brock at 141, who came out on top of an entertaining 8-6 decision against freshman Max Murin.
After Oklahoma State started the dual with three consecutive wins, Iowa bounced back and won three straight matches of their own to tie the match at 12 each. Junior Pat Lugo pulled a slight upset when he held off sixth-ranked Kaden Gfeller 7-4. Next, at 157 lbs, Kaleb Young followed with a decision of his own. The Hawkeyes undefeated 165 lber, Alex Marinelli tied the match with a fall of his own in 2:44 against Jonce Blaylock. That three-match run for Iowa marked the only matches won by the visitors all day. The win brings Oklahoma States dual record to 15-0 and they will finish the dual season undefeated for the first time since 2004-05. Both teams will now turn their attention to the postseason as they prepare for their respective conference tournaments.
Oklahoma State 27 Iowa 12
125 – #4 Nick Piccininni (Oklahoma State) over #2 Spencer Lee (Iowa) Fall 4:55
133 – #2 Daton Fix (Oklahoma State) over #3 Austin DeSanto (Iowa) 2-0
141 – #11 Kaid Brock (Oklahoma State) over #17 Max Murin (Iowa) 8-6
149 – #11 Patricio Lugo (Iowa) over #6 Kaden Gfeller (Oklahoma State) 7-4
157 – #7 Kaleb Young (Iowa) over Wyatt Sheets (Oklahoma State) 9-5
165 – #2 Alex Marinelli (Iowa) over Jonce Blaylock (Oklahoma State) Fall 2:44
174 – #10 Chandler Rogers (Oklahoma State) over Mitch Bowman (Iowa) Fall 5:30
184 – #10 Jacobe Smith (Iowa) over #13 Cash Wilcke (Iowa) 6-3
197 – #6 Preston Weigel (Oklahoma State) over #4 Jacob Warner (Iowa) 5-3
285 – #2 Derek White (Oklahoma State) over #10 Sam Stoll (Iowa) 3-1