Bison close out dual action against No. 12 Oklahoma State

Holly Burns, Sports Co-Editor

This past weekend the Bison wrestling team faced 12th-ranked Oklahoma State for their last dual meet before the EIWA Championships next weekend. Despite an overall team loss, the Orange and Blue recorded some impressive dual performances to help build some momentum heading into the championships. 

Nick Delp ’24 was one of two Bison to take down a top-20 opponent, knocking off No. 18 Wyatt Sheets at 157 pounds. Delp fought hard for the 5-7 victory over the Oklahoma State two-time NCAA qualifier and 2021 All-American. Delp started off strong and secured the opening takedown, also marking the Orange and Blue’s first on the day. Delp was able to maintain his lead in the third period despite Sheets’ desperate attempt to fight back, including a reversal to give him a comfortable lead heading into the end of the match. 

“​It was exciting to be able to go down to Oklahoma State and wrestle in such a big venue and a well known program. I thought the way Zach and I, along with the team, prepared and wrestled for the match was nothing but pure focus and hard work. Over the last few weeks we have all been focusing on getting one percent better each day and sacrificing little things in all aspects of our lives to make sure that we were properly prepared for this match and for the EIWA tournament coming up next week. Although we did not come out on top as a team I couldn’t have been more happy with how our guys wrestled and have been preparing over the last few months and I’m excited to see how the EIWA tournament goes!” Delp said.

Zach Hartman ’22 also added an impressive win on the day, taking down No. 8 ranked Travis Wittlake by a 5-0 margin. Hartman himself is currently ranked 18th nationally at 165 pounds. 

Hartman also spoke on his success against Oklahoma State this past weekend, explaining, “I felt prepared for the match. I went in knowing that it was going to be a big match-up, so I did my best to prepare for it, and felt that I’d executed my game plan pretty well. Although the match didn’t go how I had expected, I felt confident prior to the injury and was moving my feet really well. It was important for the rest of the team to experience that level of competition, so now we have some things to work on prior to EIWAs. All-in-all, I was happy with how the trip and match went, and feel more prepared than ever for EIWAs and the rest of the postseason.”

The Orange and Blue’s Kolby DePron ’25 is an Oklahoma native and had the chance to travel to his home for the Bison’s last dual. DePron attended Bridge Creek High School where he was a three-time state champion and the 2018 state runner-up. DePron was unable to grab the Bison another win in his match against fellow Oklahoma native Kaden Gfellfer, falling 9-3.

Despite the loss, the Orange and Blue are proud of their strong effort against a top-ranked team and hope the tough competition will prepare them for a championship this coming weekend. The Bison will compete at the 2022 EIWA Championships from Saturday, March 5 to Sunday, March 6 at Cornell University. 

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