in ,

No. 4-ranked Central Oklahoma opens the 2022-23 season Friday when the Bronchos host No. 17 Northern State

No. 4-ranked Central Oklahoma opens the 2022-23 season Friday when the Bronchos host No. 17 Northern State for a 6 p.m. dual at Hamilton Field House.

It’s the first of six home duals for UCO, which follows Friday’s contest with a trip to Warrensburg, Mo. for the Central Missouri Open.

“Our guys have been working hard and we’re excited to get started,” said head coach Todd Steidley, who is 73-11 entering his seventh year at the helm. “Northern State has a solid team, so this will be a good challenge for us and we need to be ready to wrestle.

“We’re looking forward to starting off at home in front of our fans. This is a veteran team with a lot of big goals for the season and we want to get off on the right foot.”

The Wolves from Aberdeen, S.D. will face Carl Albert Junior College in a 4 p.m. match before meeting UCO.

SERIES HISTORY: This will be just the second meeting between the two teams. The Bronchos beat NSU 29-10 in the first round of the NWCA Division II National Duals on Jan. 12, 2012 in the previous match.

ABOUT THE BRONCHOS: UCO enters the season with a 19-match winning streak, including 11 in a row at home. The Bronchos have a sensational 228-63-3 record at Hamilton Field House, a winning percentage of 78.1.

UCO returns seven starters – including four All-Americans — from last year’s 13-0 team that won its second straight Super Regional IV title before finishing runner-up in the NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships.

Leading the charge is junior Dalton Abney, the defending 197-pound national champion coming off a perfect 26-0 season who is ranked No. 1. He will face a tough test Friday against NSU’s third-rated Cole Huss, who finished fourth nationally last year.

UCO’s other returning All-Americans are seniors Brik Filippo (149) and Alex Kauffman (184) and junior Shawn Streck (Hvy), though Kauffman and Streck won’t compete Friday. Filippo and Streck both enter the season ranked third, while Kauffman is fifth.

Kauffman and Streck will both miss most of the first semester while recovering from injury.

The Bronchos have two other ranked individuals in redshirt freshman 157 Gabe Johnson (10th) and senior 141 Nate Keim (11th). Johnson was a national qualifier at 149 as a freshman in the COVID-shortened 2020-21 season, which the NCAA ended up not counting, then redshirted last year.

UCO’s two other returning starters are senior 165 Ty Lucas and sophomore 174 Hunter Jump, who are both moving up a weight class.  Lucas is a three-time national qualifier and two-time All-American.

ABOUT THE WOLVES: Northern State went 10-3 in duals last year, finished fourth in Super Regional V and 24th in the national tournament.

The Wolves have three returning national qualifiers in 149 Wyatt Turnquist, 184 Treyton Cacek and 197 Cole Huss, who are all ranked in the top 12. Huss finished fourth nationally last season and is No. 3, while Cacek is sixth and Turnquist 11th.

THE LINEUPS: Here’s a look at the tentative starting lineups for Friday’s dual, with UCO wrestler listed first (last year’s record in parenthesis).

125 – Studd Morris, Jr. or Garrett Steidley, RS Fr. vs. Landen Fischer, Sr. or Brenden Salfrank, Jr.; 133 – Dylan Lucas, So. vs. Teagan Block, So. or Chris Williams, Fr.; 141 – No. 11 Nate Keim, Sr. (23-6) vs. Robert Coyle, Sr.; 149 – No. 3 Brik Filippo (28-4) vs. No. 11 Wyatt Turnquist, Sr. or Kolton Roth, Jr.; 157 – No. 10 Gabe Johnson, RS Fr. vs. Devin Bahr, Sr. or Isaac Hunsley, Jr.; 165 – Ty Lucas, Sr. (19-5) vs. Kelby Hawkins, Sr.; 174 – Hunter Jump, So. (22-7) vs. Chase Bloomquist, Jr. or Tyson Lien, So. or Tyler Voorhees, So.; 184 – Anthony DesVigne, Jr. (15-10) vs. No. 6 Treyton Cacek; 197 – No. 1 Dalton Abney, Jr. (26-0) vs. No. 3 Cole Huss, Sr. or Marshall VanTassel, RS Fr.; Hvy – Braden Morgan, So. (14-8) vs. George Bolling, Sr. or Ayden Viox, Fr.

What do you think?

64 points
Upvote Downvote

Leave a Reply