Wrestlers beat Oklahoma State, win 52nd-straight dual

BY J.T. BUGOS | JANUARY 18, 2010 7:30 AM

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Bonus points proved to be the difference in No. 1 Iowa’s 19-16 victory over Oklahoma State on Jan. 16 in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

With three grapplers providing extra points in their wins, the Hawkeyes managed their first triumph over the Cowboys in their home arena since Feb. 4, 2000. Iowa also extended its dual winning streak to 52, a run that started on Jan. 5, 2008, after the Hawkeyes lost to Oklahoma State.

“That was a good team that we beat out there,” Iowa head coach Tom Brands said. “It was a big statement for our program. I feel like our guys as a team rose to the occasion, and I give them credit.”

Iowa 125-pounder Matt McDonough started the dual with a 13-4 major decision over senior Chris Notte. The fourth-ranked redshirt freshman from Marion remained undefeated in 20 matches this season.

At 133, senior Daniel Dennis saw his first action in a Hawkeye singlet since suffering an ankle injury in practice days before Iowa’s dual against Northern Iowa on Dec. 9, 2009. Dennis came out aggressive against Oklahoma State’s Jordan Oliver, who seemed to be backing up the whole match.

However, Oliver scored a last-second takedown to win a 3-2 decision for an upset.

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Sophomore Montell Marion wrestled at 141 for Iowa against fifth-ranked Cowboy Jamal Parks. Jumping across the mat in excitement after his 4-0 victory, Marion ignited the Hawkeye dominant crowd of 10,967.

“I kind of feel bad, you know, because you’re not supposed to be celebrating after matches,” he said. “I kind of let my emotions take over me … You know, this isn’t the NCAAs. It’s not March right now.”

Hawkeye 149-pounder Brent Metcalf provided Iowa with more bonus points in his match against Quinten Fuentes. Metcalf scored seven takedowns and two 3-point near falls to secure a 21-5 technical fall in 5:15.

Two Iowa losses followed when Aaron Janssen lost by major decision to Neil Erisman, 16-7, at 157. Afterward, third-ranked 165-pounder Ryan Morningstar was upset by Cowboy freshman Alex Meade, 5-3.

“We gave Janssen a little bit of an out this time, a lack of sense of urgency,” Brands said. “We told him he was going early so the sense of urgency went down. There’s no entitlement. You better be out there fighting, and that’s a match we gave up a bonus point.”

Jay Borschel and Phillip Keddy responded with two wins at 174 and 184 pounds, respectively. Borschel became the third Iowa grappler to score vital bonus points in a 9-1 major decision, and Keddy posted a close 3-2 win.

“Borschel in one word is smooth,” Brands said. “When he’s smooth, he’s dynamite, and he’s been smooth. He’s a lot more solid more frequently this year, and that’s a tribute to him.”

Luke Lofthouse at 197 and heavyweight Blake Rasing lost in the final two bouts. Each managed to wrestle tight matches against heavily favored Cowboy opponents, though.

Lofthouse lost a 3-2 decision to seventh-ranked Alan Gelogaev, and top-ranked big man Jared Rosholt pulled out a 7-5 victory over Rasing.

But despite his squad giving wrestling world’s best a scare in a postseason environment, Oklahoma State head coach John Smith didn’t see the light in a mere moral victory.

“We couldn’t have upsets against us and expect to come in and win,” he said. “Overall, I didn’t really care for my team’s performance by any means. In a few matches, it appeared we were hanging on, and I could see that in a couple of matches where our opponents were that much better.”

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