Three Big Takeaways: Hometown wrestlers shine in Cyclones’ dual meets


Jacob Rice/Iowa State Daily

Redshirt senior Jarrett Degen wins against California State Bakersfield’s Josh Brown by technical fall in the Cyclones’ 44-0 win over the Roadrunners on Jan. 12 in Hilton Coliseum.

Adarsh Tamma

It was another pair of victories for Iowa State wrestling on Sunday evening as they wrapped up their road trip with a couple of shutouts against NAIA programs Montana State-Northern and Providence in Belgrade, Mont.

The 11th-ranked Cyclones blanked both schools by a score-line of 49-0, registered 10 pins and extended their dual winning streak to six matches.

Add in its 32-6 win over Wyoming on Friday in Cheyenne, and Iowa State outscored its opponents over the weekend by a margin of 124 points and got its first conference win of the season.

The Cyclones’ last pair of non-conference matchups of the season were highlighted by plenty of new names getting some time on the mat, as well as a couple of familiar ones marking their return to Big Sky Country.

Degen, Klepps both go 2-0 in homecoming

The tandem of Jarrett Degen and Charlie Klepps were top of mind in Sunday’s duo of dual matches, as both wrestlers made their homecoming to Montana at the Belgrade Special Events Center.

The end result was four wins for Iowa State, including two by fall, as the Cyclones extended their most recent dual meet record to 48-2 over the last five matches.

Degen, the Belgrade High School product, recorded two pins in his old high school gym. The former four-time Montana state champion led MSU-Northern’s Colin Silverthorn 8-1 towards the end of the first period when he recorded the fall at 2:35 in the 149-pound weight class.

His next pin against Providence redshirt sophomore Gavin Gies finally came at the 6:28 mark in the match, as he had had a commanding 17-4 lead with four takedowns.

The 23rd-ranked Degen has just one loss so far this season, as he dropped a close encounter against Army’s PJ Ogunsanya 4-3 back in November.

Klepps, like Degen, was also a four-time state champion during his high school career. The Billings, Montana, native posted a 168-15 record at Billings Senior High, and won each of his titles at four different weight classes.

Klepps last wrestled at 141 pounds on Jan. 12, when he won over Cal State Bakersfield’s Luis Ramos 3-1 on decision in a 44-0 Iowa State win. After earning a win on forfeit against MSU-Northern, Klepps faced off against Providence’s Caleb Birdwell.

After initially leading 2-1 after the first period, Klepps recorded two escapes and takedowns to widen the gap and finished with a 7-2 on-decision victory. The redshirt junior now sits at 3-6 on the year, as he earned his first on-mat victory since Dec. 11, when he beat Missouri’s Parker Filius 10-2.

Team Effort

In all three of the Cyclones’ matches against the Cowboys, Polar Bears and Argonauts, the matches were mainly won on bonus point victories and falls as they looked to establish the tempo.

Iowa State won eight out of the ten matches in its win against Wyoming in Laramie, with two of them by more than seven points. Ramazan Attasauov defeated No. 33 Jacob Greenwood on a major (12-3) at 133, and No. 11 Ian Parker followed that up with 11-3 win over Chase Zollman.

The Cyclones’ strategy of building up large leads continued in Montana, as they won a combined 13 matches on bonus points, including ten by fall.

Outside of Degen’s pair of pins, regular starter Sam Schuyler recorded a pin over MSU Northern’s Ryan Moldenhauer in just 55 seconds, and followed that up with an 18-6 major decision against Providence’s KC Buday.

Caleb Fuessley (125), and Julien Broderson (184) joined Degen as the other two Cyclones to record two pins. Both wrestlers gave their opponents little opportunity to score points, as they were in double digits before recording the fall.

Bastida enters the gauntlet

Sophomore Yonger Bastida has been one of the Cyclones’ surprise wrestlers during this season, as he is currently ranked 13th in the nation at 197 pounds. The Cuba native was mainly involved in freestyle wrestling before his arrival to Ames, as he won the bronze medal in the 92 kilogram weight class at the 2019 U20 World Championships.

Bastida now sits at 12-1 on the season after going 4-4 in his freshman campaign last year, and has already posted top-ten wins against Iowa’s Jacob Warner (4-3) and Purdue’s Thomas Penola in December.

Against Wyoming, Bastida had another tough matchup against third-ranked Stephen Buchanan. In a back-and-forth scramble, both wrestlers seemed to cancel each other out through the first two periods. Bastida led 4-2 as time wound down, but Buchanan struck with a takedown to tie it up late, and won the match in sudden victory with another takedown.

The loss seemed to quickly fade for Bastida, who dismissed his opponents in Montana by fall and major decision. The bigger test lies ahead, as the Cyclones’ next three opponents all have ranked wrestlers in his weight class.

Starting next week against North Dakota State Bastida could have to face off against No. 32 Owen Pentz, then No. 11 Jake Woodley of Oklahoma and a marquee matchup against No. 1 AJ Ferrari of Oklahoma State on Jan. 30.

Bastida has a packed remainder of the month ahead of him, as the Cyclones as a whole enter what looks to be a tested schedule before March.