The first dual back in McLeod Center did not go so well for the UNI wrestling squad on Sunday afternoon as the Panthers dropped a 27-13 dual with the University of Oklahoma Sunday afternoon. A poor first half of the dual and a forfeit at heavyweight put UNI in a hole that they couldn’t dig out of.
The Panthers went 1-4 in the first five matches, their only win coming from Josh Alber, who defeated Trae Blackwell 7-0. Alber hit a textbook fireman’s cary in the third period to keep Blackwell at bay and secure his win. UNI had two total takedowns in the first half of the dual, both scored by Alber.
Panther head coach Doug Schwab downplayed the effect that the McLeod Center had on his lightweight wrestlers. “It’s still a 30 foot circle, everything’s still the same. Just shows us that we have a long way to go with this team. These young guys, I thought they’d been doing a great job really of just going out and competing and worrying about getting better. It looked like we tightened up a little bit this match.”
“I’ll give Oklahoma credit, they had a plan in certain situations and they went and got it. They really dictated the ties. We didn’t put enough together where we could put two or three things where we could open them up. They really controlled positions.”
Still, UNI was able to get some offense back in the second half, with Taylor Lujan, Drew Foster, and Jacob Holschlag all securing wins. Holschlag scored the big upset win by ridng #19 Brand Johnson for the entire 2nd and most of the third periods, scoring a four point nearfall in the 2nd to get the win 9-5. The natural 184 pounder has been bumping up to 197 for the second half of the season and if he wants to take a spot at the NCAA’s he’ll need a couple more upset wins to lock it in.
Lujan put the Panther Train back on the tracks after seeing Max Thomsen and Bryce Steiert get upset earlier in the match, with a 17-7 major decision win over DaWaylon Barnes. Lujan attacked early and wore Barnes out of the match.
“It’s not fun seeing your teammates get beat like that. It kind of fired me up, like alright, well lets start bringing the team back,” Lujan said after the match. “I kind of broke him down a little bit, saw that we needed a major and I thought that might a difference, I was hoping it would, for the team.”
Drew Foster kept things going for UNI right off the first whistle with a quick takedown of Oklahoma’s Matt Reed. Foster cruised to a 10-3 decision, never really having any problems with the Sooner who had bumped up from 174 pounds.
Jay Schwarm, Jake Hodges, Max Thomsen, Paden Moore, and Bryce Steiert all fell in today’s dual. Thomsen and Steiert were both upset, and that played a big part in the final score. If they can both get wins the Panthers get the win, even with Everard’s forfeit. As it stands UNI is now 9-3 (6-0 MAC) while Oklahoma improves to 9-4 (4-1 B12).
The Panthers will next be in action this Friday back at the West Gym against Buffalo, before hitting the road for Missouri on Sunday. That dual will be for the MAC Championship, as Missouri is also undefeated.
Oklahoma 27, UNI 13
125 – Christian Moody (Oklahoma) over Jacob Schwarm (Northern Iowa) (MD 13-4)
133 – Josh Alber (Northern Iowa) over Trae Blackwell (Oklahoma) (Dec 7-0)
141 – Mike Longo (Oklahoma) over Jake Hodges (Northern Iowa) (TF 15-0 6:14)
149 – Davion Jeffries (Oklahoma) over Max Thomsen (Northern Iowa) (Dec 7-2)
157 – Clark Glass (Oklahoma) over Paden Moore (Northern Iowa) (Dec 3-0)
165 – Yoanse Mejias (Oklahoma) over Bryce Steiert (Northern Iowa) (Fall 2:03)
174 – Taylor Lujan (Northern Iowa) over DaWaylon Barnes (Oklahoma) (MD 17-7)
184 – Drew Foster (Northern Iowa) over Matt Reed (Oklahoma) (Dec 10-3)
197 – Jacob Holschlag (Northern Iowa) over Brad Johnson (Oklahoma) (Dec 9-5)
285 – Ross Larson (Oklahoma) (For.)