Three Tigers win titles in talent-heavy UNI Open

Logan Ball, 23 Sports

Sunday, December 4–

In a tournament saturated with talent featuring hundreds of Division I programs and seven nationally placed programs, winning one weight class would have been a successful day for Head Coach Brian Smith’s team. But the Tigers would take home three from Cedar Falls thanks to wins by J’den Cox, Jaydin Eierman and Joey Lavallee.

Victory is nothing new to the senior Cox, the national champion won three straight matches in dominant fashion by pinning every opponent he faced.

Eierman, a redshirt freshman, would not earn any pins, but two major decisions and a technical fall would do it for the 133-pounder. Eierman is now the back-to-back champion in the 133-pound weight class at the UNI Open after three straight victories last year as well.

The final Tiger champion on the day, Lavallee, was able to get the pin over Michigan State’s Austin Hiles and three decisions afterward earned him the title.

165-pounder Daniel Lewis and 157-pounder Luke Fortuna took home second place in their respective weight classes. The junior Lewis is no stranger to the UNI Open; he swept the annual tournament his freshman year in 2014.

The four third place finishes belonged to Aaron Assad, John Erneste, Connor Flynn and Austin Myers.

The tough competition in Northern Iowa can only help the Tigers, who have a tough opponent in No. 4 Ohio State on Thursday, Dec. 8. Tiger wrestling stays in the Buckeye State for the week, making their way to Ohio University to take on the Bobcats.