Wrestling picks up yet another ranked win


Lee Chinyama

Marcus Coleman at the ISU vs. OSU wrestling meet on Jan. 29.

Anthony Hanson, Sports Reporter

AMES — Casey Swiderski was hard on himself during his five-match losing streak.

Confidence is huge for Swiderksi and the freshman started to doubt himself, Iowa State head coach Kevin Dresser said.

“We got to get through this,” Dresser said. “And the only way to get through this is keep going out there.”

Swiderski returned to the win column Sunday afternoon during Iowa State’s 21-13 win over Illinois at Hilton Coliseum. The Cyclones won six out of ten matches during the return of the Beauty and the Beast event, featuring both Iowa State wrestling and gymnastics.

Swiderski had lost five consecutive matches entering Sunday’s dual. He earned a 6-4 win by decision over No. 17 Danny Picino of the Fighting Illini and gained a confidence boost in the process.

“I know I’m right there with the best,” Swiderski said.

Swiderski, a No. 3 rated recruit, recently fell from the national rankings after losing matches in January and February. Swiderski has lost three matches by one point since the Jan. 27 dual against Oklahoma. The freshman admitted, the cause of his shortcomings has been the mental aspect of wrestling.

“It was all upstairs,” Swiderski. “I got to continue to go into the room and build my confidence.”

During his fifth match losing streak, Swiderski faced four nationally ranked wrestlers, including No. 3 Cole Matthews and No. 9 Cael Happel. Sunday, Swiderksi used three takedowns to earn a 10-7 decision over Pucino.

The Iowa State freshman returned to the win column and picked up his first win over a ranked opponent since he defeated No. 11 Joseph Zargo in the opening dual of the season for Iowa State.

“It’s only up from here,” Swiderski said. “Never losing sight of my goal.”

After Swiderski’s win helped Iowa State take the lead 6-4, the Cyclones extended the team point margin. The Fighting Illini did take the lead again and Iowa State improved its record to 16-2.  

The match started at 125-pounds with Caleb Fuessley getting the win for Iowa State. He topped Maximo Renteria from Illinois in sudden victory.

The first ranked matchup of the afternoon came at 133-pounds with No. 21 Zach Redding for Iowa State taking on No. 10 Lucas Byrd. The match saw Illinois earn the first bonus points with Bryd earning a major decision over the Iowa State junior.

Iowa State started to extend its lead at 165-pounds. David Carr extended his win streak with a dominating performance over Anthony Federico from Illinois. Carr tallied four takedowns and finished ahead of Federico 16-2. He earned the first bonus points for Iowa State with the major decision.

Carr ended the match with a nod to Iowa State gymnastics by backflipping in celebration.

Bonus points came to Iowa State again at 184-pounds in the final match at Hilton Coliseum for No. 4 Marcus Coleman. Coleman faced No. 23 Dylan Connell and was the aggressor from the start. Coleman recorded three takedowns in the first period and extended his lead in the second and third.

Coleman finished with five takedowns, a reversal and two four-point near falls in the match. He earned a tech fall win for the Cyclones.

“It felt good to go out on a tech fall,” Coleman said.

Coleman, a 2022 NCAA All-American, wrestled in his final match in front of the crowd at Hilton Coliseum.

The Cyclones will travel to Missouri on Wednesday for their final dual meet of the 2023 season. The Cyclones’ 18-dual winning streak against Big 12 competition will be at stake against the No. 11 Tigers.