TULSA- Oklahoma State wrestling is known for setting records. And they did just that on Saturday at the Big 12 tournament, as they sent all ten of their wrestlers to the finals as well as clinching the championship after just 20 matches as the Cowboys went a perfect 20-0 winning their 15th Big 12 title in the 20 years that the tournament has been held and their 51st overall. Also bringing Oklahoma State athletics, as a whole, to an outrageous 400 conference championships! The Cowboys entered the finals with a team score of 155.5, a 62-point lead over the second place team, Oklahoma. They finished the tournament with a team score of 176.5 and an 83-point margin of victory. Both of which are Big 12 Championship records.
Nick Piccininni (125) got the championship matches started with an upset of Josh Rodriguez, the number one seed at 125 in the Big 12. Scoring a take down in the last sudden victory period to win 7-5 and bring home his first Big 12 title. Up next, Kaid Brock (133) took on Seth Gross from South Dakota State. Brock led most of the match but fell behind late in the second and couldn’t recover as he fell to Gross 9-7. Dean Heil (141) took the mat with confidence as he went on to defeat Bryce Meredith from Wyoming 10-7 to win his third Big 12 title. Anthony Collica (149) took the mat next and defeated Davion Jeffries of Oklahoma to become only the eighth Cowboy all-time to win FOUR consecutive Big 12 titles!
Up next was Joe Smith (157), who took home his second Big 12 title as he defeated Clay Reem of North Dakota State 7-0. Chandler Rogers took the mat against Dylan Cottrell of West Virginia. Rogers nearly had a takedown in the closing seconds of the match, but just ran out of time as Cottrell held on to win 5-4. Kyle Crutchmer (174) took on Matt Reed of Oklahoma. Crutchmer took a five-point lead over Reed with just under a min remaining in the third period as was able to hang on to that lead to beat Reed 8-3 to win his second Big 12 title. Nolan Boyd (184) was the next Cowboy to take the mat and win as he defeated Dylan Gabel in dominating fashion with a 15-4 major decision to win his third Big 12 championship!
Preston Weigel (197) took the mat against the number one seed of the tournament, Jacob Smith of West Virginia. And in the first period, Weigel took Smith straight to his back and was able to get the fall, the Cowboys only fall of the championships matches, to bring home his second Big 12 title. Austin Schafer took the mat against Dustin Dennison from Utah Valley in the heavyweight and last championship match of the day. Schafer became the eighth Cowboy champion of the day with a 9-0 major decision!
At the start of the tournament, all the Cowboys had first round byes and then Nick Piccininni (125) got the party started at with a 18-2 tech fall in 5:09 over Ben Gillette of South Dakota State to advance to the semi-finals where he defeated Drew Templeman of Wyoming, who went on to finish third, with a 4-0 decision to reach the finals. Kaid Brock(133) pinned Dylan Hyder of Air Force in 2:13 in the semi-finals, and then beat Earl Hall of Iowa State with a 7-4 decision to advance to the finals. Dean Heil (141) pinned Taylor Nein of North Dakota State in just 3:45 to advance to the semi-finals where he pinned Timmy Box of Northern Colorado in 1:44 to advance to the finals. Anthony Collica (149) pinned Mitch Friedman of North Dakota State in 3:42 to advance to the semi-finals where her beat Cole Mendenhall of Wyoming, who went on to place third in the tournament, with a 16-4 major decision to advance to the finals.
Next up was Joe Smith (157) who defeated Raider Lofthouse of Utah Valley with a 16-0 technical fall to advance to the semi-finals where he beat Archie Colgan of Wyoming with a 8-0 major decision to advance to the finals. Then Chandler Rogers (165) pinned Keilan Torres of Northern Colorado, who went on the finish in third place, in just 1:13 to advance to the semi-finals, and the pinned Luke Zilverberg of South Dakota State in 2:02 to advance to the finals. Kyle Crutchmer (174) beat Michael Billingsley by major decision 19-7 to advance to the semi-finals and the beat Lelund Weatherspoon with a 3-1 decision to advance to the finals.
Nolan Boyd (184) beat Andrew Dixon of Oklahoma with a 12-1 major decision to advance to the semi-finals and then beat Carson Powell of Iowa State with a 9-0 major decision to advance to the finals. Preston Weigel (197) won by technical fall over Tanner Orndorff of Utah Valley 15-0 to advance to the semi-finals and then beat Nate Rotert of South Dakota State with a 9-0 major decision to advance to the finals, and wrapping the first day up for the Cowboys was Austin Schafer (285). Schafer pinned Kerry Powers in 1:38 to advance to the semi-finals and then beat Ben Tynan from North Dakota State with a major decision 11-0 to advance to the finals.