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Wrestling: Cyclones Light Up Scoreboard in Opener

9 Bonus Point Victories Lead to 43-3 Win over CSU

2023 NCAA Division I Men’s Wrestling Championship Photo by Shane Bevel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Cyclone wrestling opened their season on Sunday by cruising to a 43-3 victory over the Vikings of Cleveland State. Iowa State lit up the scoreboard against a team who was picked to finish 3rd in the MAC. This meet saw 9 Cyclone bonus point victories, punctuated with a David Carr pin in his high school gym. 4-time NCAA Champion Kyle Dake presented Carr with the UFC Fight Pass Outstanding Wrestler belt after the dual.

MJ Gaitan kicked off the dual meet at 174 for the Cyclones against Ronald Dimmerling. Gaitan scored early takedown, then put together some great chain wrestling into a second takedown in the first minute of the match. Gaitan’s dynamic style was on display when he used a body lock for his third takedown and a tilt for backpoints. One more takedown gave him a 15-3 lead going into the second period. A sweep single gave Gaitan the 19-3 tech fall win. He’s reeeeaaal fun to watch.

Stepping on the mat at 184 for Iowa State was redshirt freshman Caleb Helgeson. Following Gaitan’s lead he wasted no time breaking open scoring — finishing a single leg on Joey Lyons 20 seconds into the match. A second single leg gave Helgeson a 6-2 lead after a period. The second period was deja vu with Helgeson once again scoring on a single leg. An escape, takedown and riding time made it a 14-3 major decision.

Cleveland State sent their best out at 197 in MAC champion Ben Smith. For the Cyclones it was Nando Villaescusa, not wrestle-off winner Julien Broderson, who took the mat. Smith scored first with a takedown a minute in. After an escape Villaescusa took a 4-3 lead with a go-behind. Smith’s volume shooting backfired again in the second period as Villaescusa scored on another go-behind. Villaescusa locked up a major decision with two more takedowns in the third. What an impressive display of counter-wrestling. Maybe 197 isn’t as settled as I thought it was.

Yonger Bastida took on ranked Daniel Bucknavich in his 285 debut. It was Bucknavich scoring the opening takedown, but it was all Bastida after that. After a bundle of singles and doubles, the match ended in a 25-10 third period tech fall for the Cyclone.

At 125 Kysen Terukina made his return to the mat with a 20-5 tech fall victory over Ben Aranda. He started things off by converting a heel pick for three points. Two second period takedowns built a 9-3 lead heading to the final period. Terukina kept his foot on the gas in the third, scoring a late takedown to ensure the tech. Halfway through the dual Iowa State lead 23-0.

Despite a lot of action, the first period between Evan Frost and Jake Manley ended scoreless. Frost changed that in the second period with an escape and a takedown. After Frost put on a tough inside wrist ride Manley chose neutral to start the third. After the Viking got in deep on a single, Frost scored on a reattack, then added a single of his own. With that Frost smelled blood and added two more takedowns for the 17-3 win at 133. This kid is going to win some big matches in the third this season.

The Vikings weren’t ready to back down yet. 141 started with fireworks when CSU’s Dylan Layton ripped a headlock and torqued Jacob Frost over for what is now a 7-point move. Frost came back with a reversal and takedown before the first period ended. Layton made it 16-5 with another escape and feet-to-back takedown to start the second. Two quick takedowns from Frost made it 17-12 entering the third. Needing multiple takedowns he chose neutral. Layton showed signs of slowing down, but sealed the match with a takedown. Layton puts the Vikings on the board with an absolute barnburner 21-18 win.

Four years after initially committing to Iowa State, Anthony Echemendia made his Cyclone debut against Douglas Terry. Echemendia’s quickness was on display as he picked up three first period takedowns. He added four more in the second period — the last of which took Terry to his back and ended the match early with a 24-7 tech fall. Not a lot of action shown on the mat, but Echemendia opened up his offense on his feet in the 149 match.

At 157 it was returning national qualifier Jason Kraisser out for Iowa State against Shane Heil. Heil scored the opening takedown, but Cyclone fans knew not to worry. After lots of scrambling Roller Coaster Kraisser took a 4-3 lead into the second period. Heil got in deep on Kraisser’s legs again, but Kraisser leg passed for another takedown. CSU must not have had Kraisser scouted, because they chose down in the third period. Kraisser put on a tough ride and got choice following injury time for CSU. He scored a reversal and two sets of four back for an 18-3 tech fall.

The Man of The Hour David Carr closed out the dual at 165 against Daniel Patten. In his home gym he wasted no time. It took all of four seconds for his first takedown. A low double and crosswrist roll made it 10-1 halfway through the first period. Superstar Carr ended the match with a pin less than two minutes after it started by hitting his coach’s trademark move the Dresser Dump.

Iowa State leaves Ohio with a dominant 43-3 win over the Cleveland State Vikings. The Cyclones are back in action next Sunday against Davidson. Alumni Nate Carr Jr and Marcus Coleman will bring their Wildcats to Hilton for ISU’s home opener. No word on if Steph Curry will be making the trip.