Top-ranked Central Oklahoma returns to Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association action this week with a pair of duals, one at Hamilton Field House and the other on the road.
The defending league champion Bronchos, 9-1 overall and 1-0 in the conference, host No. 17 Fort Hays State (1-10, 0-1) at 7 p.m. Thursday before traveling to Warrensburg, Mo. Sunday to take on Central Missouri (0-3, 0-0) at 2 p.m.
UCO picked up a pair of wins at the Midwest Duals last weekend despite missing several starters and the Bronchos probably won’t be at full strength again.
“We’ve got a few guys banged up that may not be able to go this week,” said head coach Todd Steidley, who is 82-12 in his seventh year at the helm. “We need to make sure to get everybody healthy and back to full strength for the end of the season.
“The good thing is our depth is pretty good at most weights, so we have guys ready to step in.”
UCO has just two duals remaining after this week, both at home against top-10 teams. The Bronchos take on No. 8 Adams State on Feb. 3 before wrapping up the dual season Feb. 12 against No. 3 Nebraska-Kearney.
Central will also host the NCAA Division II Super Regional IV Tournament on Feb. 26. The top-three placers at each weight in that 11-team tournament qualify for the NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships, set for March 10-11 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Here’s a look at the tentative lineup for this week’s duals: