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OSU Wrestling Notebook: Surber Injury Update, Alvarez Impressed and Doucet Benefitting from Carroll

Luke Surber should return this weekend.



[Devin Wilber/PFB]

The Cowboys are coming off a pair of top-20 wins during an East Coast trip before finally retuning to Stillwater this weekend.

Oklahoma State handled No. 15 Pitt and No. 20 West Virginia last weekend. Sunday, the No. 5 Cowboys will host Oregon State for their first home dual since Dec. 8.

OSU coach John Smith and heavyweight Konner Doucet met with media Wednesday to put a bow on their most recent road trip and preview the Beavers. Here are three storylines that stood out from Smith’s and Doucet’s media availability.

Luke Surber ‘Dinged,’ but Should Return Soon

It was a long-awaited but short return for 197-pounder Luke Surber.

Surber wrestled for the first time Friday since suffering an injury Dec. 1. He lost to No. 15 Mac Stout of Pitt 5-2 in the return. Then, two days later in OSU’s dual against West Virginia, it was Kyle Haas who wrestled at 197 for the Cowboys.

“He dinged his knee a little bit,” Smith said of Surber. “Expect to see him this weekend.

“He dinged it enough that we needed to hold him out of the West Virginia match. Got a little swelling and that’s already down. Should be back this weekend.”

Surber, a senior, went 23-10 last season and finished third at the Big 12 Championships before making his second appearance at the NCAA Wrestling Championships.

Sammy Alvarez Impressed

We may see more of Sammy Alvarez in the Cowboys’ lineup.

Alvarez, a senior transfer from Rutgers, made his OSU debut at 149 pounds against Pitt, beating No. 26 Finn Solomon 12-4 for a major decision. He then narrowly lost to No. 9 Ty Watters of WVU 4-2 in his second match on Sunday.

Alvarez wrestled in place of redshirt freshman Jordan Williams, who Smith said was dealing with a hamstring injury. Williams is 9-4 this season and has had control of the 149 spot since OSU’s second dual of the season against Lehigh. He’s lost two of his last three matches, though.

Alvarez transferred to OSU last January in the middle of the season and wasn’t eligible to compete until this semester. He was ranked as high as No. 8 at 141 pounds last season before transferring.

“Upperclassman — gives us some experience at the weight a little bit when he’s in there,” Smith said. “I’m not saying that Jordan’s not gonna continue to compete, but we have options, right? An option that we didn’t realize we had. …

“It just gives you an opportunity to use someone for injury purposes, or even if we need to use him period. It’s always nice when you have a quality backup at a weight.”

Konner Doucet Benefitting from Christian Carroll

Every dual has been decided so far by the time it’s gotten to heavyweight Konner Doucet, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have pressure to perform when he’s out there.

Doucet is 12-2 this season and has won five in a row since losing back-to-back matches in early December. Behind Doucet at the weight, though, is Christian Carroll, who was the No. 1 pound-for-pound recruit in the class of 2023.

“I think he just pushes me,” Doucet said. “Just kinda makes me hold myself to a higher standard. That’s what I need, and that’s what he needs, too — both of us pushing each other. We want what’s best for each other. We’re not competing against each other, I guess, right now, so I want what’s best for him and he wants what’s best for me.”

Smith said before the season that Carroll may see time in the lineup, even if it was little enough to still keep his redshirt. But with Doucet coming off a top-10 win and on track to earn All-America honors, it seems Doucet has made it difficult for Smith to put him on the bench, even for a match.

“A couple of bumps in the road, but I feel like I’m starting to fire on all cylinders,” Doucet said. “Starting to get comfortable with the season. It takes a while to get back into the folk style side of things, but I’m getting pretty comfortable and looking forward to what’s to come.”

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