Notebook: Cyclone wrestlers finishing the year out strong


Then-redshirt freshman Joel Shapiro faces off against Isaiah Patton during Iowa State’s 18-16 victory over then-No. 16 Northern Iowa on Feb. 16 at Hilton Coliseum. 

Stephen Mcdaniel

In just a blink of an eye, the Iowa State 2019-20 wrestling season has nearly come and gone with the Cyclones preparing for their final weekend of duals before competing in the Big 12 and NCAA tournament.

The upcoming weekend will be an interesting one with some changes in the plans that will alter the weekend’s schedule.

Some new faces to the lineup

With plans to put Jarrett Degen, David Carr, Sam Colbray and Marcus Coleman into a tournament on Saturday for the purposes of getting more matches for the NCAA tournament, some new faces will be joining the lineup for Saturday’s dual with Missouri.

Cyclone fans have already seen the backups for Degen and Carr. Redshirt sophomore Ryan Leisure (149) and redshirt freshman Grant Stotts (157) have already filled in during Degen and Carr’s time of injury.

But with Colbray and Coleman not competing against the Tigers, two new faces may be making the trip for the Cyclones and making their season dual debuts.

“It’s more of a strategic move, so we’re going to go with some starters and some backups to Missouri,” Head Coach Kevin Dresser said.

At 174, Cyclone fans may see redshirt sophomore Mac Southard fill in for Colbray. Southard was listed as an “OR” during the previous weekend’s duals with West Virginia and Northern Iowa, although Colbray made the start in both matches.

At 184, Cyclone fans could see the dual debut of a familiar name: Hank Swalla. The redshirt senior was just honored before the Northern Iowa dual for senior night. Hank has continued the tradition of having a Swalla family member on the team for the last 10 years.

Swalla may be the option for the Cyclones because the only other listed 184-pounder on the team is freshman Julien Broderson, who’s being redshirted.

A challenge issued

Electric is the only word that could describe the scene of Hilton Coliseum during Iowa State’s comeback against Northern Iowa.

A crowd of 5,129 people packed into Hilton, and the Cyclone fans did a great job of providing some Hilton Magic for the Cyclones, which is something Dresser wants to see again.

The crowd down the stretch of the dual seemed to give the wrestlers that extra little motivation to win, especially after Colbray’s upset win over No. 5 Bryce Steiert.

“I remember one time in the third period [in the Northern Iowa dual], I probably needed 20 more seconds of riding time, and everyone starts standing up and got super loud, and I’m like, ‘Alright, I’m getting that riding time point now for sure,’” redshirt freshman Joel Shapiro said. “I just felt that energy; it was amazing.”

Dresser issued the challenge for Iowa State fans to make it back for the Cyclones final home dual to close the season out, which is at 7 p.m. Sunday against North Dakota State.

Updated InterMat rankings

With a new week comes newly updated InterMat rankings.

There were some slight changes in the rankings following the weekend duals with West Virginia and Northern Iowa.

Despite the major upset, Sam Colbray moved up two spots to No. 14, sitting behind Oklahoma State’s Joe Smith, whom Colbray lost to a few weeks ago. Despite the loss, Steiert remains at No. 5 at 174.

Degen was just knocked out of the top 10 and placed at No. 11 following his loss to newly ranked No. 10 Max Thomsen.

Alex Mackall dropped two spots to No. 14 after suffering a pin against now No. 13 Jay Schwarm.

Lastly, Gannon Gremmel jumped a spot to No. 13 and is now ahead of Northern Iowa’s Carter Isley after Gremmel beat Isley during the Cyclones and Panthers dual.