Iowa State entered Friday with four wrestlers still competing at the 2022 NCAA Wrestling Championships in Detroit. In a dramatic turn from Thursday, they went 6-1 in Friday’s first session, advancing three wrestlers to the most intense round in the sport — Friday night at the NCAA Tournament. Iowa State wrestled lights out, posting a perfect 3-0 blood round. That guaranteed the Cyclones three placewinners, a high for the Dresser era.
Ian Parker started the day against #18 Chad Red of Nebraska. Red was looking for his fourth medal at 141 pounds. The Cornhusker jumped out to a 4-1 lead with two first period takedowns. Parker cut that to 4-2 with an escape in the second period. He cut Red loose to start the final period and earned a stall point. With a minute left in the match, Parker got a takedown to temporarily tie it, however Red’s riding time point was secured so he cut him loose again. With 30 seconds left Parker was working on finishing a single leg takedown to force OT when the action was stopped due to Red’s finger being caught in Parker’s headgear. The restart got Red out of the jam and he won the match 7-5. In his six seasons as a Cyclone, Parker tallied a large list of accomplishments. He started each season except his redshirt year. He routinely took out top 10 opponents. The 4x NCAA qualifier won a Big 12 title in 2020 and was named First Team All-American after that season’s NCAA tournament was cancelled.
The backside of the bracket was not going to give David Carr a warm welcome. He started Friday out against returning All-American Wyatt Sheets of Oklahoma State. Calm and composed, Carr used a reversal and a riding time point to take the match 3-2. Later in the session he knocked another rival out of the tournament — Iowa’s 2x All-American Kaleb Young. After a scoreless first, Young took a 2-1 lead with a takedown. Carr worked right out and escaped to tie it. With just four seconds left in the period Carr finished the go-ahead takedown. He kept the hawkeye down for nearly the whole third period, securing a riding time point and the victory to move on to the blood round. His opponent there was #6 Jared Franek of NDSU. Franek had a 3-2 lead until David Carr did David Carr things, scoring the winning takedown and riding out the Bison for the final 30 seconds. That put Carr back on the medal stand. In the consolation quarterfinals Carr received a forfeit from last year’s 149 pound national champion Austin O’Connor of North Carolina. O’Connor had been injured but battled into the medal rounds. Carr can place as high as 3rd and no lower than 6th. He wrestles Michigan’s Will Lewan in the first of his two matches Saturday.
At 184 Marcus Coleman refused to stop scoring. He started Friday with a 6-1 victory over Princeton’s Travis Stefanik. In his second match he defeated Oklahoma State’s 2x All-American Dakota Geer for the second time this season. That was a high-flying affair that saw Coleman get out to an 8-1 lead before Geer stormed back to tie the match at 11. Coleman stayed on the attack though, finishing the match with three takedowns in a row and a riding time point to win 18-13. His blood round opponent was #6 Trey Munoz of Oregon State. Munoz got the first takedown, but those would be his only points of the match. Coleman ran off 13 points in a row for a 13-2 major decision. After Coleman put the Beaver on his back for four nearfall in the third you could see Munoz’s spirit break. So much grit from him in this tournament. He dropped his consolation quarterfinal to Ohio State’s Kaleb Romero. Saturday Coleman wrestles for 7th against #11 Jonathon Loew of Cornell.
Yonger Bastida wrestled Maryland’s #25 Jaron Smith in his first match Friday. Four takedowns, a reversal and a riding time point gave the Cyclone an 11-4 win. His next opponent was #16 Kordell Norfleet of Arizona State who beat him handily last season. Bastida had a savvy 4-2 victory, scoring a second period takedown and surprisingly choosing down in the third period and getting a reversal. Friday night he wrestled OU’s returning All-American Jake Woodley. Woodley had won all three previous matchups, outscoring Bastida 17-2. Bastida controlled the match on Friday night though, winning 4-2 to earn All-American honors. He followed that up with a 4-3 victory over Rutgers wrestler Greg Bulsak. That puts Bastida in the consolation semis against Wyoming’s Stephen Buchanan.
Thursday was a dark day for Iowa State wrestling. On Friday the sun rose again and was a damn beautiful sight. Iowa State went 11-2 on the day. They advanced three wrestlers to Saturday for the first time since 2016. Carr, Coleman and Bastida will finish their season in Saturday’s 11 AM session.