Nebraska wrestling defeated the No. 12 Wyoming Cowboys 28-7 in a non-conference dual at the Devaney Center Friday night. Wyoming tested the Huskers and even imposed its will on Nebraska at times, but ultimately the Huskers fought back and won the dual.
Nebraska’s night got off to a rough start in the 125-pound weight class, when redshirt freshman Alex Thomsen took on Wyoming senior Cole Verner. After Thomsen led early, Verner came back and got a takedown of Thomsen before time expired in regulation, tying the match 5-5. In overtime, Thomsen got what Huskers fans and coaches believed was a takedown, but even after video review, the ruling stood, no takedown. The match ultimately went to a third overtime where Verner won by a decision of 6-5, giving the Cowboys an early 3-0 lead in the dual.
The Huskers’ night only continued to worsen as in the 133-pound weight class. Senior Zak Hensley was defeated by Montorie Bridges by a major decision of 14-6, giving the Cowboys four points and extending their lead to 7-0.
Nebraska’s evening got back on track as All-American junior Chad Red Jr. defeated Chase Zollmann by a decision of 5-1. Red Jr. controlled much of the match, ending with a riding time advantage of over three minutes. The victory by Red Jr. was a clear turning point in the dual, as it energized the crowd and seemed to change the attitude and intensity of the team as a whole going forward.
The dual was then tied at 7-7 after Collin Purinton defeated Jaron Jensen by a major decision of 11-3 in the 149-pound weight class.
The Huskers took the lead for the first time during the dual when redshirt freshman Peyton Robb took the mat against Logan Jensen. Robb won the match by a technical decision of 17-2 with 43.2 seconds remaining in the third period, giving the Huskers a 12-7 lead over the Cowboys. This was the most decisive win by any Husker on the night.
The Huskers won the next two matches as well, as senior Isaiah White won by a decision of 9-3 in the 165-pound weight class and in the 174-pound weight class, sophomore Mikey Labriola won by a major decision of 10-2. These two wins gave the Huskers a 19-7 lead in the dual.
In the 184-pound weight class, junior Taylor Venz’s win over Tate Samuelson by a decision of 11-8 mathematically won the dual for the Huskers, as they took a 22-7 lead with only two matches remaining.
In the final two matches of the evening, junior Eric Schultz (197) won by a decision of 7-6, while senior Christian Lance won by a decision of 3-2 in the heavyweight class. This gave Nebraska the win by a score of 28-7.
Next up for the Huskers is an away dual against the No. 15 Northern Iowa Panthers, another early season non-conference test before they begin Big Ten play in January.