LARAMIE, Wyo. (Feb. 12, 2017) – The University of Wyoming won three of the last four bouts against No. 25 North Dakota State on Sunday afternoon, but fell 24-16 on Senior Day. Bryce Meredith and Cole Mendenhall each picked up bonus point wins, while Kyle Pope and Branson Ashworth each earned victories for the Brown and Gold (7-8, 4-4 Big 12).
“I liked how we started the dual this afternoon,” UW head coach Mark Branch said. “It was a good feeling with how Kyle (Pope) started for us. I think there was a couple of our guys that continued fighting and worked hard out there, but it just wasn’t enough. Win or lose, I want our guys to be an inspiration. I have said it for a while now, I have no doubt that we have a dual team that can make noise looking ahead.”
To start the dual off on the right foot, Pope earned a 10-5 decision over Dylan Urbach. Pope scored four total takedowns during the bout, with two in the first period and all five points given up were due to escapes. It was Pope’s third Big 12 dual win for the Brown and Gold.
After the Bison won five straight matches, No. 8 Meredith brought the crowd to its feet with a first-period takedown of Taylor Nein. The pin was Meredith’s sixth bonus point win in his last seven bouts.
Mendenhall scored an early takedown to begin the 149-pound bout with Mitch Friedman. Mendenhall totaled three takedowns and a reversal during the match and ultimately won 13-4 for the Pokes. Mendenhall’s dominance was his fourth major decision of the season and first during Big 12 action.
In the final bout of the afternoon, Ashworth overcame an early takedown from Brandon Fogarty. An escape and late takedown in the opening period from Ashworth helped him secure the win. Ashworth additionally scored another escape and takedown for the 6-2 decision.
The seventh-ranked wrestler at 157-pounds took an 8-3 decision over No. 19 Archie Colgan. Depsite an escape and takedown, Colgan was down early and was unable to comeback for the win. Chaz Polson scored a reversal in the first period of the 184 bout with Tyler McNutt. McNutt earned five points in the final period for the 10-5 decision. A fast start from No. 4 Josh Rodriguez helped him earn a major over No. 16 Drew Templeman in the 125-pound bout.
The dual closed the regular season for UW. Wyoming will look towards the postseason with the Big 12 tournament on March 4-5. The tournament will be held in Tulsa, Okla.
174: Kyle Pope wins by decision over Dylan Urbach, 10-5
184: Tyler McNutt wins by decision over Chaz Polson, 10-5
197: Cordell Eaton fall over Nate Shaw (3:06)
285: Ben Tynan wins by decision over Brandon Tribble, 2-1
125: #4 Josh Rodriguez wins by major decision over #16 Drew Templeman, 14-5
133: Sykora tech fall over Woodburn (4:48), 16-0
141: #8 Bryce Meredith fall over Taylor Nein (1:52)
149: Cole Mendenhall wins by major decision over Mitch Friedman, 13-4
157: #7 Clay Ream wins by decision over #19 Archie Colgan, 8-3
165: #16 Branson Ashworth wins by decision over Brandon Fogarty, 6-2