ISU wrestling hopes to keep winning streak going with improved performances


Redshirt freshman Kyle Larson throws his opponent, Grand View’s Ernesto Escobar, down to the mat in their 125-pound matchup on Nov. 7 at Hilton Coliseum. Larson pulled off a 14-3 win, giving the Cyclones their first four points in the 22-18 win.

Ryan Young

After starting the season with back-to-back wins, the wrestling team is still finding a lot it can improve upon.

And when different members of the team look back on the season opener, there are a lot of mixed emotions about how last week went.

“I think some guys did accomplish what they set out to do, and some guys didn’t,” said ISU coach Kevin Jackson. “Obviously, to win matches is important, but I think sometimes you get caught up in how you win those matches. I’m not sure if we won the matches the way we wanted to win them. But to not wrestle your best and still win matches is always a good thing.”

Many wrestlers also noted they didn’t come out as strong as they wanted to during that first meet, and are making that one of their main goals in practice.

“It was our first time getting down to weight for just about everybody,” said Luke Goett. “It takes a while to adjust to that, and I think it’s a huge thing for us. That meet’s over and out of the way. I’m not thinking about it too much.”

Senior Boaz Beard was out of the lineup last week due to an elbow injury. However, Jackson said Beard is back at practice, and slowly working his way back to full strength.

Lelund Weatherspoon, who took Beard’s place in last week double dual, had what some members of the team felt was one of the more impressive performances for the Cyclones. 

And while it isn’t clear what weight class Weatherspoon will compete at, it looks like he is here to stay.

“He’s a competitor. You get what you see out of Lelund,” Jackson said. “He’s a winner, and he is going to go out there and try to dominate every match. I’m very happy with what he did, and we just need to stay consistent.”

The Cyclones have a busy schedule headed into the weekend this week. They will be competing in another double dual meet on Friday against Midland and West Virginia, and then they will host the Harold Nichols Cyclone Open on Saturday.

While the wrestlers and coaches know that such a short turnaround in between meets may be difficult, they also know how important it is to pick up a pair of wins headed into the tournament.

“We need to get the momentum ball rolling. If we can go out there like were capable of, we’ll beat Midland and West Virginia [on] Friday,” said senior Kyven Gadson. “And then going into Saturday, it’s very important for us to perform at our own tournament. Starting off 4-0 is huge for us, since we haven’t done that in a few years. It will be great for our momentum.”