After a full Saturday, Oklahoma State leads big going Sunday’s finals of the Big 12 Tournament. Here’s a recap of what we saw on the first day.
Nick Piccininni controlled Rico Montoya on his way to a 15-2 decision. Daton Fix followed it up with a gritty 6-1 win, and Kaid Brock ended the Cinderella bid of Chris Sandoval, who had taken out the No. 1 and No. 8 seed en route to the semifinal, 8-3.
I’ve said it all year, but Kaden Gfeller does not know how to wrestle a boring match. He controlled the majority of his bout with Khristian Olivas only giving up two escape points, both when Gfeller opted to cut Olivias. At one point the match got a bit chippy as Gfeller and Olivias were clearly having words with each-other. Gfeller then took a step back and “raised the roof” riling up an already fired up crowd. Gfeller ultimately won the match 7-2.
The Cowboys got off to a quick start with the upper weights as Jacobe Smith hammered Hayden Hastings of Wyoming 18-5. Dakota Geer dropped a 7-3 decision to Drew Foster, then Preston Weigel and Derek White rattled off two major decisions to close out the semifinals. With their wins all seven Cowboy finalists have locked in automatic bids to the NCAA tournament.
125-Nick Piccininni MAJ DEC Rico Montoya UNCO 15-2
133-Daton Fix DEC Matt Schmitt WVU 6-1
141-Kaid Brock DEC Chris Sandoval UNCO 8-3
149-Kaden Gfeller DEC Khristian Olivas Fresno State 7-2
174-Jacobe Smith MAJ DEC Hayden Hastings WYO 18-5
184-Drew Foster UNI DEC Dakota Geer 7-3
197-Preston Weigel MAJ DEC Jake Woodley OU 13-0
HWT-Derek White MAJ DEC Tate Orndorf Utah Valley 10-1
Wyatt Sheets picked up a really gutsy win in consolation quarterfinals over Colten Carlson. Carlson had two takedowns in the first to stretch out a bit of a lead over Sheets. Sheets then picked up late takedowns in the second and third period to get a 7-5 win. He will wrestle two seed Jacob Wright in his first match tomorrow.
Joe Smith comfortably won two matches in a row to make the consolation semifinals. Joe will need at least one more win to secure an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. At 165 the top five receive bids. Joe will wrestle one seed Branson Ashworth in his first match tomorrow.
157-Wyatt Sheets DEC Paden Moore UNI 7-3
165-Joe Smith MAJ DEC Jeremy Thomas OU 8-0
157-Wyatt Sheets DEC Colten Carlson SDSU 7-5
165-Joe Smith DEC Isaiah Hokit Fresno State 8-2
Finals Matchups (7 p.m on FSN)
125-Nick Piccininni vs. Brent Fleetwood NDSU
133-Daton Fix vs. Montorie Bridges WYO
141-Kaid Brock vs. Dom Demas OU
149-Kaden Gfeller vs. Jarrett Degen ISU
174- Jacobe Smith vs. Taylor Lujan UNI
197-Preston Weigel vs. Willie Miklus ISU
285-Derek White vs. AJ Nevills Fresno State
Consolation Semifinals (12 p.m. on FloWrestling)
157-Wyatt Sheets vs. Jacob Wright Fresno State
165-Joe Smith vs. Branson Ashworth Wyoming
184-Dakota Geer vs. Jackson Hemauer Fresno State
Both Joe Smith and Dakota Geer need to win one more match to secure automatic bids to the NCAA tournament. Sheets will require an at large bid, and all seven finalists have secured a spot at the NCAA tournament.
1. Oklahoma State – 129.5
2. Iowa State – 92.5
3. Northern Iowa – 62.5
4. Oklahoma– 56.5
5. Fresno State – 48
6. North Dakota State – 48
7. Wyoming – 45.5
8. Utah Valley – 39
9. West Virginia – 35.5
10. Northern Colorado– 15
11. South Dakota State – 14.5
12. Air Force – 11.5
OSU hasn’t quite locked up the team title. Iowa State still has their entire team in the tournament and theoretically could pull a comeback. But it will take a great day from ISU and a really bad one from OSU for the Cowboys to not win their seventh straight Big 12 title.
Schedule for Sunday, Mar. 10
• Session III (Consolation Semifinals, 3rd/5th Place Matches): 12 p.m. (FloWrestling)
• Session IV (Championship Matches) 7 p.m. (Fox Sports)