Hawkeyes' Early Fury Buries Oklahoma State

Iowa 133-pounder Austin DeSanto works on Oklahoma State's Reece Witcraft before pinning him in Sunday's match. (Darren Miller/hawkeyesports.com)

John Bohnenkamp

Pressure, Pat Lugo said, makes diamonds.

“I love that pressure,” the Iowa 149-pounder said.

The pressure has been on the top-ranked Hawkeyes all season, and they’ve always had an answer.

Sunday’s 34-6 win over Oklahoma State at Carver-Hawkeye Arena was the latest statement, the completion of a 13-0 regular season.

“Big statement,” said Lugo, who was the finish to a four-match fury that started — and, really, finished — this dual.

Oklahoma State (13-3), ranked ninth nationally, was down 20-0 after the first four matches. Spencer Lee, the top-ranked 125-pounder, and 141-pounder Max Murin had major decisions. Austin DeSanto, at 133, and Lugo had pins.

“Bonus points, bonus points, bonus points,” said the top-ranked and undefeated Lee, who won, 12-3, over fourth-ranked Nick Piccininni. “And again, bonus points.”

Lugo talked about something associate head coach Terry Brands has been telling the Hawkeyes.

This is meant, Brands has been saying.

“I guess it’s showing the world that this is meant,” Lugo said. “Terry tells us, ‘This is meant.’ But you know, we’re not done yet.”

The Hawkeyes head into the Big Ten championships as the conference regular-season champion. Every wrestler they’ll take there is nationally ranked.

“Tune these guys in,” coach Tom Brands of what the Hawkeyes would do over the next two weeks. “Put a razor’s edge on them.”

The Hawkeyes were cutting right away.

DeSanto pinned 14th-ranked Reece Witcraft in 2:38. Murin followed with a 15-4 win over Dusty Hone.

Then Lugo pinned sixth-ranked Boo Lewallen in 2:22.

“He’s a bear,” Tom Brands said of Lugo. “He’s a bearcat.”

“My first pin in Carver, actually,” Lugo said.

"He showed me up," Lee said.

Lugo said he appreciated the ovation he got from the crowd for 13,109.

“The only thing better would have been if it was in Stillwater,” Lugo said, grinning.

Oklahoma State finally got points when 19th-ranked Wyatt Sheets defeated fifth-ranked Kaleb Young, 9-4, at 157.

“Kaleb Young is a guy that needs to manage his matches,” Brands said. “He didn’t do a good job of managing that match.”

Second-ranked Alex Marinelli (165) and top-ranked Michael Kemerer (174) won their matches, as did Jacob Warner (197) and Tony Cassioppi (285).

“Spencer Lee, his winning is contagious,” Lugo said. “Alex Marinelli, his winning is contagious.”

The only other Iowa loss came at 184, when Nelson Brands lost to Anthony Montalvo, 7-2.

Iowa 34, Oklahoma State 6

125 — Spencer Lee (Iowa) def. Nick Piccininni, 12-3. 133 — Austin DeSanto (Iowa) pinned Reece Witcraft, 2:38. 141 — Max Murin (Iowa) def. Dusty Hone, 15-4. 149 — Pat Lugo (Iowa) pinned Boo Lewallen, 2:22. 157 — Wyatt Sheets (OSU) def. Kaleb Young, 9-4. 165 — Alex Marinelli (Iowa) def. Travis Wittlake, 3-2. 174 — Michael Kemerer (Iowa) def. Joe Smith, 12-2. 184 — Anthony Montalvo (OSU) def. Nelson Brands, 7-2. 197 — Jacob Warner (Iowa) def. Dakota Geer, 8-3. 285 — Tony Cassioppi (Iowa) def. Austin Harris, 11-1.

Match notes

  • Iowa wrestlers finished the dual season with a combined 112-18 record.
  • Iowa completed its 22nd undefeated season at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
  • Iowa set an NCAA single-season average attendance record, averaging 12,568 in seven duals. The 87,979 fans through the gates is also a school single-season record.
  • Lee scored bonus points for the 14th time in 15 matches. He outscored his opponents 183-13 in the regular season.
  • DeSanto earned his second pin of the season. He has scored bonus points in 11 of 14 wins.
  • Lugo improved to 9-1 against ranked opponents and earned his sixth top-10 win of the season.
  • Marinelli earned his fourth top-10 win of the season.
  • Kemerer improved to 13-0 and has won 32 straight duals.