No. 1 Cowboys narrowly lasso No. 7 Tigers

No. 1 Cowboys narrowly lasso No. 7 Tigers

Photo by Max Arnold

Justin Bjorseth, 23 Sports

Saturday, January 28—

The lights shone bright in the wrestling world Friday night as two top ten teams took center stage in a non-conference matchup. Despite strong showings from multiple members of the Mizzou squad, the No. 7 Tigers were unable to dethrone the undefeated No. 1 Oklahoma State Cowboys. The Tigers managed to split the match, taking five of the rounds, but still fell 20-16.

Every wrestler the Cowboys sent to the mat was ranked in the top ten in the country, and six of them were matched up against ranked Tigers.

The start was rough for Mizzou, who dropped the first three matches of the dual. After No. 10 Nick Piccininni defeated unranked Aaron Assad by technical fall, the Cowboys followed suit with two consecutive victories, each by decision, in top ten matchups in the 133- and 141-pound classes.

Mizzou would not go quietly, though, as they proceeded to win four consecutive matches, including three consecutive top ten matches, with wins coming from Lavion Mayes, Joey Lavalle and Daniel Lewis. The fourth win was a major upset, as unranked Dylan Wisman won by decision over No. 6 Kyle Crutchmer, in the 165-pound class, staking Mizzou to a 12-11 lead.

Mizzou’s winning streak was snapped in the 184-pound class, when Matt Lemanowicz lost by technical fall to No. 5 Nolan Boyd.

Olympic medalist J’den Cox came to the rescue in the 197-pound class, defeating his fifth ranked opponent of the season. J’den won by major decision over No. 8 Preston Weigel. This tied the dual at 16, and put everything on the line in the heavyweight match.

The final match, however, saw a major decision victory for No. 6 Austin Schafer of Oklahoma State over Mizzou redshirt freshman Austin Myers. The Cowboys would take the dual 20-16.

Mizzou will enjoy a nice break following the loss. Their next match is Thursday, Feb. 2, at the Hearnes Center against Northern Illinois. The Tigers will be looking to rebound and continue their tear in conference play.