OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – In its final outing before Christmas, the 17th-ranked Concordia University wrestling team split its four duals at the Oklahoma City Duals hosted by Oklahoma City University on Sunday (Dec. 17). In competition exclusively with fellow NAIA members, the Bulldogs defeated Bethany College, 49-6, and Lyon College, 34-18, while suffering losses to 15th-ranked Baker University, 28-12, and to host Oklahoma City, 25-20.
Second-year head coach Andrew Nicola’s squad completed the day with 24 individual wins, including five over nationally ranked opponents, and eight pins. Concordia is now 3-3 overall in dual meets.
“Not too bad of a day of wrestling,” Nicola said. “Of course we would have liked to have competed with Baker and Oklahoma City a little bit better. Oklahoma City was on fire. They beat the teams ranked third, 15th and 17th in the country today. There were a couple of matches that didn’t go our way in both duals. The day went about as expected, but I did expect to pick up one more team win.”
One of seven Bulldogs to compete in all four duals on Sunday, senior Jared Woods (11-8) made a big splash at 157 while competing in his home state. The Durant, Okla., native went a perfect 4-0 with the biggest highlight being a 4-3 decision over 11th-ranked Brandon Lawson-Archuleta in a dominant team victory over Bethany, a member of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. Woods also finished his day in style with a victory by technical fall over Roger Gasmann of Lyon.
“He’s been training like a mad man,” Nicola said of Woods. “We were considering dropping him to 149 but we needed him at 157. Wrestling in front of his family and friends, he had a big day for us. He trains hard so that he can compete well.”
Four of Woods’ teammates picked up impressive wins of their own over ranked foes. Sophomore Cam Devers defeated Baker’s 12th-ranked (133) Tyler Dickman, 3-2, at 141 pounds. At the same weight, junior Chris Kimball topped Bethany’s No. 20 Caysen Smith by major decision, 16-8. In the matchup with Oklahoma City, 174-pound junior Walker Fisher beat 19th-ranked Kaden Truelove, 3-2. Finally, senior Jon Lado took care of Lyon’s No. 20 Connor Weber, 7-4, at 165.
All 11 Bulldogs that competed on Sunday notched at least one win. Nine collected two or more victories with Woods leading the way. He was followed by Fisher (3-1) and Lado (3-1). Concordia won all seven contested bouts against Bethany. The lone match that went to the Swedes was at 133, where the Bulldogs were open the entire day. Concordia took seven matches from Lyon and five from Oklahoma City. Lado emerged as the only Bulldog with more than one pin. He wiped away opponents from Baker (Bryson Wesley) and Bethany (Nicolas Desch).
A perfect 2-0 at 141, Devers pushed his team high win total to 17. He’s won each of his last six bouts and has been dealt only two setbacks all season. Darrin Miller (16-9) and Fisher (13-5) have also produced noteworthy overall season records.
The next event on the schedule is the National Wrestling Coaches Association Duals on Jan. 4-5 in Fort Wayne, Ind. The bracket has not yet been announced for the annual national duals that take place at the War Memorial Coliseum. The event’s web page can be found HERE. Seeding is heavily based upon this season’s national rankings.