The University of Northern Iowa posted another memorable win under head wrestling coach Doug Schwab, and it came at the expense of the Oklahoma Sooners - again.
After an upset home win over Oklahoma last season, ninth-ranked UNI hit the road and knocked off the No. 4 ranked Sooners, 19-17, Sunday at Howard McCasland Field House in Norman, Okla. The Panthers won five matches, but received a fall from 141-pounder Joe Lazor and a major decision from All-American Ryan Loder at 184 to tie the all-time series, 7-7.
UNI cracked the top 10 of national rankings this season for the first time since 2003. According to the Waterloo Courier's Jim Nelson, it was the Panther's first win over a top-10 ranked opponent since beating Iowa State, 22-21, in the 2004 National Wrestling Coaches Association National Duals.
“It was a good team win, and it was good for them to come together,” Four-year Panthers head coach Schwab said while returning from the dual. “You can see them growing from it. They are starting to believe they are a really good team. We just need to keep building.”
Lazor, a national qualifier last season, provided a punch for the Panthers. He decked 10th-ranked and 2012 149-pound All-American Nick Lester, giving UNI a 12-0 lead after three matches.
UNI (6-0) opened with back-to-back decisions from fifth-ranked 125-pounder Dylan Peters and No. 1 Joe Colon at 133, Peters beat No. 5 Jarrod Patterson, 4-1. Colon held on for a 7-5 win over eighth-ranked Cody Brewer.
“We started off strong against three All-Americans,” said Schwab. “It was big for us to get up 12-0 and earn bonus points at 141 pounds.”
After Oklahoma (7-1) cut the UNI lead to 12-7, Cooper Moore notched another win for the Panthers. The 11th-ranked red-shirt freshman beat Clark Glass, putting the Panthers up 15-7.
All-American Ryan Loder all but sealed the Sooners fate. He recorded a 13-0 major decision over Danny Chaid at 184. The Panthers went up 19-11 with two matches remaining.
Oklahoma closed with two decisions to move within two points, including Ross Larson's 5-4 win over Blaize Cabell in a battle of former Iowa preps. Larson, ranked 18th for Oklahoma, was a two-time state champion for Ankeny and Ballard, beating Cabell, who wrestled at Independence, in the 2011 state semifinals en route to his first title.
The Panthers can enjoy the feat briefly before focusing on improvements for their next dual. UNI hosts Mid-American Conference foe Missouri on Friday at the West Gym, starting at 7 p.m.
“We feel good about the win, but there are some situations that we have to put our foot on their throats a little more," Schwab said. "Our guys know that."
The win was one of three major upsets Sunday. Michigan, 19th in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association dual rankings, beat No. 2 Minnesota, 19-14. No. 13-ranked Pittsburgh defeated No. 5 Oklahoma State, 19-18.
AT NORMAN, OKLA.
Northern Iowa 19, Oklahoma 14125 pounds - Dylan Peters (UNI) dec. Jarrod Patterson, 4-1; 133 - Joe Colon (UNI) dec. Cody Brewer, 7-5; 141 - Joey Lazor (UNI) pinned Nick Lester, 2:06; 149 - Kendric Maple (OU) major dec. Tyler Patten, 10-1; 157 - Justin DeAngelis (OU) dec. Jarrett Jensen, 17-15 (SV); 165 - Cooper Moore (UNI) dec. Clark Glass, 6-2; 174 - Andrew Howe (OU) major dec. Cody Caldwell, 22-8; 184 - Ryan Loder (UNI) major dec. Danny Chaid, 13-0; 197 - Travis Rutt (OU) dec. Basil Minto, 6-3; Hwt. - Ross Larson dec. Blaize Cabell, 5-4.