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Five Thoughts on Oklahoma State’s 34-9 Win against OU

On Bedlam staying, Daton Fix and disappointing losses in a blowout



[Devin Wilber/PFB]


STILLWATER – Oklahoma State slaughtered Oklahoma 34-9 on Sunday in Gallagher-Iba Arena for its 19th Bedlam win in a row in a victory that was just as dominant as that winning streak.

Here are Five Thoughts from the No. 2 Cowboys’ Bedlam victory as they improved to 14-0 with one dual left next week against No. 4 Iowa.

1. Glad There’s Still a Taste of Bedlam in Stillwater

It was a dual everyone in GIA knew the ending of even before it began, yet the home crowd was still ecstatic from the start. Because that’s Bedlam, baby.

Even with his team having won the past 19 Bedlams and handling OU 28-9 in the first meeting this season, OSU coach John Smith still emphasized the importance of the rivalry this week. Smith grew up attending Bedlam, though, saying he attended the rivalry for the first time at GIA when he was 9 years old. As an Okie himself, he understands the feeling a fan gets when their team wins a Bedlam meeting, no matter the sport. He also pointed out he knows the disappointment of losing a Bedlam, making these last 19 wins all that more important.

OU leaving the Big 12 for the SEC has erased the rivalry from the schedule in every other sport, at least for the foreseeable future. But the Sooners will stay in the Big 12 for wrestling as an affiliate member.

Thank goodness, especially for Cowboy fans, wrestling will still give the state a taste of Bedlam.

2. Bonus Points Were the Difference

OSU needed sudden victory three times to win matches last week against South Dakota State, prompting Smith to praise his team this week for winning what he called gutsy matches and saying that’s how this team was built to win. Then, on Sunday, OSU went out and got bonus points in six of the seven matches it won.

The Cowboys started the dual with three straight bonus-point wins, as Troy Spratley got a fall at 125, Daton Fix notched a technical fall at 133 and Tagen Jamison also pinned his opponent at 141. Teague Travis earned a major decision at 157, while Dustin Plott also got a tech fall at 184. Izzak Olejnik, at 165 pounds, was the only OSU wrestler that won and didn’t tally bonus points.

Those bonus points were the difference in that, though OU won one more match than it did last time, the margin was still six points (or a fall) bigger.

Outside of praising his guys for gutting out close wins, Smith has also emphasized throughout the season the importance of pushing wrestlers to get to the next level, especially down the stretch, before the postseason arrives. The example he gave early in the season was not worrying about wrestlers just qualifying for the NCAA Wrestling Championships, but getting them on the podium once there.

With only one outing left before the postseason begins, Sunday could have been a sign that guys like Spratley and Jamison are beyond just getting to Kansas City, but making a run while they’re there.

3. Daton Fix ‘Furthest Thing from Being a Selfish Guy’

Daton Fix got a Senior Day standing ovation before Sunday’s dual that was seven years in the making.

Fix arrived to Stillwater from Charles Pages High School in Sand Springs as a top recruit in 2017. Between redshirting his first year on campus, taking an Olympic redshirt in 2019-20 and getting an extra year because of COVID, Fix has been at OSU as long as Mike Boynton has been leading OSU’s men’s basketball program.

It’s a rarity in college sports today for an athlete to spend an entire career at their first stop, let alone for three extra years.

“He’s been a huge asset to Oklahoma State,” Smith said. “He’s gone through some challenges, but I think he still really has a great spirit, team spirit. He’s wrestling for his team all the time. He’s not thinking so much as an individual, but he’s competing — his whole career he did that — ‘I gotta get bonus, I gotta do this, we gotta do this.’ He’s one of those guys that is the furthest thing from being a selfish guy. He’s just the opposite and willing to help anyone. [He’s] gonna be missed.”

Smith’s statements were backed up only a few weeks ago when Fix bumped up to 141 pounds against Missouri to win a close match that ultimately won’t matter on his individual record. But the win not only helped his team on the scoreboard, but also gave extra rest to Jamison, who was injured only two days before in a match.

4. Still Disappointing Upsets Despite Blowout

Although it was a 25-point win, there were still some disappointing losses riddled throughout for the Cowboys.

Of OSU’s three losses, all of them came against opponents ranked lower. No. 15 Jordan Williams lost to 21st-ranked Willie McDougald for the second time this season 5-2 at 149.

At 174, No. 20 Brayden Thompson then lost to unranked Tate Picklo 6-2 in sudden victory, only two weeks after Thompson used sudden victory to upset fourth-ranked Peyton Mocco of Missouri, 8-1. The two were tied 1-1 to start the last period before ending regulation tied 2-2. Although both wrestlers got a point in the third, neither actually earned it, as Thompson was awarded a technical point and Picklo got a point for stalling to send the match to sudden victory. Picklo’s match-winning takedown was the only one of the bout.

The dual concluded with ninth-ranked Konner Doucet losing to No. 12 Josh Heindselman 2-1.

The Sooners somehow finished the dual with less takedowns than wins, as OSU won the takedown count 21-2.

“It’s amazing they won three matches,” Smith said. “It’s credit to them, won tight matches. …

“I thought, watching that team a little bit, I thought OU had a good team effort.”

5. Get Ready

This is when it gets good for the Cowboys.

Although OSU is 14-0 and hasn’t won a match by less than 10 points, there’s still some unknown in how good this team really is. A lot of that has to do with having four freshmen in the starting lineup and coming away with myriad close matches on a weekly basis.

The Cowboys host No. 4 Iowa on Sunday, though, for their regular-season finale before the postseason gets going. That dual could shed some light on OSU, but most of the mystery will still remain until after the Big 12 Wrestling Championships. OSU flopped in the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational early in the season, but between injuries and young wrestlers gaining experience, this group has transformed into a much more dominant squad since that outing.

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