By Jason Elmquist
STILLWATER, Okla. —
West Virginia didn’t even know what hit them when facing the second-ranked Oklahoma State wrestling team Friday at Gallagher-Iba Arena.
Sandwiched between a pair of ranked opponents for the Cowboys, the Big 12 Conference newcomer walked out of the historic wrestling venue with plenty of OSU-inflicted wounds as the Cowboys rolled up a 36-3 victory.
“I felt we did a little better wrestling on top, spent some time riding and grinding on top and returning them to the mat,” OSU coach John Smith said. “It’s tough wrestling and there isn’t any question you’ll be exposed if you’re not a tough wrestler on the mat. ... It’s that tough, grinding wrestling that we’ve got to continue to develop.”
Eddie Klimara set the tone for the match by defeating Shane Young, who is ranked No. 24 in the 125 weight class. Young failed to escape in the third period and Klimara, a freshman with a 19-10 record, rode Young the entire two minutes to win a 3-2 decision with the riding time point.
“It was huge because I haven’t really been winning, but I have been wrestling tough kids,” Klimara said. “So I’ve been training hard and just went out there and got that win for us to get things started and get everybody motivated. It was really nice.”
Smith added, “You don’t very often see the guy who got the takedown lose the match. We got two escapes and a riding time point to win. He had to ride a minute and 48 seconds to get the riding time point. There’s no question that in college, if you’re holding somebody down for two minutes it’s work. It was good to see.”
Tyler Dorrell, wrestling for an injured Jon Morrison — the fifth-ranked wrestler at 133 pounds — fell behind West Virginia’s Colin Johnston early in the bout and found himself down by two points heading into the third period.
After a quick escape, Dorrell was taken down again and escaped again with a minute remaining — down two points and Johnston owning a minute in riding time. Dorrell earned two points for Johnston stalling and scored a takedown with 3 seconds remaining to earn a 7-6 victory after riding time was factored in.
“I didn’t even know I was wrestling until Tuesday, so I was glad to step in,” Dorrell said. “I needed to show something because I hadn’t performed well at 125. ... The only wrestler they had seen was the 125 wrestler and they’ve seen me dead out there — not able to move. It was good to attack and come back at the end and show that I can do more than what I did at 125.”
In the only match in which West Virginia was heavily favored — with 13th-ranked wrestler Nathan Pennesi at 141 pounds — rode Julian Feikert to a 6-0 decision for West Virginia’s only win of the dual.
Oklahoma State wouldn’t have much of a challenge the remainder of the match. Following the loss, OSU had seven ranked wrestlers to finish out the dual — while West Virginia sent out four freshmen.
Jordan Oliver scored the first bonus points of the dual in his 149-pound match against freshman Tre Miller-Scott. The top-ranked wrestler in the nation pinned the Mountaineer freshman in just 1 minute, 19 seconds.
Alex Dieringer, ranked No. 10 at 157 pounds, built on OSU’s team score with an 11-2 major decision victory over freshman Jason Luster. Third-ranked Tyler Caldwell made it two-straight major decision for the Cowboys with a 10-2 victory over freshman Ross Renzi.
No. 1-ranked Chris Perry settled for a 9-3 decision in his 174-pound bout against freshman Bubba Scheffel.
No. 14 Chris Chionuma got OSU back in the bonus points in his 184-pound match against Lance Bryson. Chionuma scored six takedowns to record a 17-4 major decision victory.
Ponca City native Blake Rosholt, the 16th-ranked wrestler at 197, had to battle to get a 4-1 victory over A.J. Vizcarrondo. It took a first-period takedown and the riding time point to secure his seventh win of the season.
The night ended in quick fashion with third-ranked Alan Gelogaev in the heavyweight class. Gelogaev needed just 55 seconds to get a takedown and pin of Phil Mandzik to end the blowout for the Cowboys.
The Cowboys will return to Gallagher-Iba Arena at 4 p.m. Sunday for the final home dual of the season against No. 17 Pittsburgh.
“This is a team with All-Americans, a team that’s in the middle of Pittsburgh with some of the best wrestlers in the country right there,” Smith said. “There’s no question, there’s four or five weight classes that are going to be battles — and there are three or four where I think we are going to be underdogs. ... It’s a team that could cause us a lot of fits, so we have to be ready to go.”