Without starters, ISU struggles at home meet

Andrew Marshall

While the varsity Cyclone wrestlers returned home from a big win over third-ranked Lehigh Friday, other ISU wrestlers gained valuable experience at the Harold Nichols Open in Fort Dodge Saturday.

The tournament featured wrestlers from ranked Division I teams such as Minnesota and Northern Iowa, Division II defending champion Wartburg, South Dakota State, Nebraska-Omaha and junior college national champion Iowa Central. The tournament is named for former NCAA champion and ISU head coach Harold Nichols.

Without coach Bobby Douglas and all 10 starters, the Cyclones did not fair well at the tournament. All ISU wrestlers were eliminated from the championship bracket before the semifinals in the Minnesota-dominated tournament was dominated by Minnesota. There was no team scoring in the event and most Cyclone wrestlers were competing unattached.

Mike Somsky and Kevin Amesquita, two wrestlers with varsity experience this season for the Cyclones, competed at 165 pounds and 174 pounds, respectively. Amesquita lost 5-4 to Nebraska-Omaha’s Dan Vech, and Somsky also lost his first round match.

The Cyclones’ next competition will be Saturday at the Kaufman-Brand Open in Omaha, Neb. After that, the ISU wrestlers will travel to Chattanooga, Tenn., to take on Carson-Newman, Tennessee Chattanooga and Virginia Tech Nov. 29.