Broncs fall to Oklahoma; losing streak now at three

By Logan VanDine

The Rider Wrestling Team is heading in the wrong direction with only a few weeks to go until the end of the regular season heading into the MAC Championships. They fell short again on Feb. 5, getting blown out against the Oklahoma Sooners 24-10 in the Sooner State.

After No. 19 Quinn Kinner won the first bout in the 149 lbs match, the Broncs could not find any type of rhythm for the rest of the match and at times, looked like they had no chance.

The Sooners won seven out of the final nine bouts and one via a pin which was made on red shirt senior Richie Koehler to lose the match 24-10 and drop the Broncs to 4-5 on the year.

Despite the 14-point loss, Head Coach John Hangey thought his team wrestled hard and was a lot more competitive than their last loss to Bucknell on Jan. 28. 

“I thought they wrestled much better this weekend than they did against Lock Haven and Bucknell last weekend, they brought more energy, they put more constant pressure on their opponents and when you lose four matches by a combined total of six points, it’s going to be a 12-0 swing on the scoreboard so it makes a big difference and I thought our effort was much better,” Hangey said.

Hangey also gave kudos to particular wrestlers that he thought competed well in their bouts win or loss.

“Mike Wilson did a great job, he wrestled the 20th ranked kid in the country, beat him three to one and controlled the match the whole way and could have beaten him worse,” Hangey said. “Quinn Kinner did a great job shutting down the kid who was ranked 23rd in the country. He was a very good kid and Quinn shut him down 4-0 so those two would be my highlights and McKenzie Bell did well too but we didn’t get the match we wanted there.”

Wilson, who won three bouts for the Broncs against the Sooners, gave his thoughts on his team’s efforts and how he was able to beat a top 20 wrestler in the nation.

 “I loved the effort. Every guy in the lineup today showed what they are capable of. These guys are banging on the doors, and they are right there from emerging in the weight classes,” Wilson said. “For me, when I watch my buddies fight hard for every point, it makes it easier to go out and get the job done. I just stuck to my game plan, I kept it simple, wrestled smart, and found a way to get my hand raised.”

With the Broncs set for two more away matches this weekend against Edinboro on Feb. 10 and Clarion on Feb. 12, Hangey discussed how he thinks his team can right the ship and snap their recent slide they have been on.

“We have to capitalize on scoring opportunities, we’re not taking advantage of it when it’s in front of us, we’re not grabbing it, finishing takedowns, getting escapes,” said Hangey. “We’re doing the effort part but not capitalizing on certain opportunities that can win us matches.”   

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