Hall and Weatherman lead No. 16 Iowa State to victory on senior day

Flipping his opponent over onto his back, redshirt senior Tanner Weatherman goes in for a pin. Wrestling at 165 Weatherman pinned his West Virginia opponent, Connor Flynn, at 2:43.

Brian Mozey

Only 25 seconds remained in the first period as senior Tanner Weatherman put his opponent into a cradle and never let go. 

The whistle blew with 17 seconds left in the first period and every person leaped out of their seats to roar in approval. 

Weatherman rose from the mat, hit his chest and waved to the fans. He had pinned his opponent in his final match at Hilton Coliseum as an Iowa State Cyclone.  

“It’s picture perfect to go out like that,” Weatherman said. “I’m so grateful for the fans throughout these past five years.”

The fans were also loud and proud for senior Earl Hall as he took a minute to collect his thoughts after defeating his opponent, 10-5. As he was kneeling on the mat, all he could think about was the three years he spent as a Cyclone. 

After getting up, Hall ran over to head coach Kevin Jackson and gave him a hug that lasted a couple of minutes. 

“I just told him thank you for the opportunity and believing in me,” Hall said. “It’s amazing how fast these three years went by. It seemed like my first match against West Virginia.”

No. 16 Iowa State (10-5, 2-2 Big 12) defeated West Virginia (6-9, 0-3 Big 12) with a final score of 25-11 to finish off the last home dual of the wrestling season. It was an emotional night not only for the seniors, but also for the Iowa State coaches. 

Jackson was grateful that Hall and Weatherman won their matches and that the team got the win to continue its three dual win streak. 

It was also an emotional night for Jackson. During the intermission of the dual, the ISU athletics department commemorated the 100-year anniversary of the Iowa State wrestling program. Jackson was able to look back at the memories of his time as a wrestler and a coach. 

“It was a special day,” Jackson said. “I knew pretty much everyone, but it was special to win in front of them as well as our fans.”

The 100-year anniversary ceremony included wrestlers from the 1965 and 1976 classes. The 1965 class was NCAA National Champions and the 1976 class was runner-up in the NCAA Championships, but was Big Eight Conference Team Champions. 

Hall was watching the ceremony on the side and enjoyed every second of the intermission. He was proud to be a Cyclone and continue this long-standing tradition of winning at Iowa State and in the wrestling program. 

“I love Earl,” Jackson said. “You might see his name on one of those banners in Hilton in 2020 from the Olympics.”

As for the future, Iowa State still has one more regular season dual at Minnesota and then it’s the Big 12 and NCAA Championships, so the focus is still ahead. Hall and Weatherman appreciated the moment from the fans and coaches, but they know it’s time to focus on winning. 

“It was great to see Earl and Tanner leave Hilton with a win,” Jackson said. “Now, we have to finish our job in the next few weeks.”