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Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling Fall Short in Clash vs. No.10 Iowa State



Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling

The No. 18 Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling program clashed with No. 10 Iowa State Cyclones at Humboldt High School in Northwest Iowa on Sunday and simply put – the Badgers fell short.

Wisconsin lost this highly anticipated dual 42–0.

Let’s take a look at each weight class and see how the Badgers performed individually.

125 pounds

No. 5 Eric Barnett vs. No.17 Kysen Terukina.

Wisconsin’s Barnett fell behind early and was not able to get his offense going. ‘EB’ is far too good of a wrestler to let this linger and I expect him to rebound well in the next dual.

Barnett lost this match 14–3 (major decision).

133 pounds 

Nicolar Rivera vs. No. 18 Evan Frost.

Wisconsin’s Rivera fell behind 5–0 early but he kept battling.  After cutting the deficit 5–2 in period two, Iowa State’s Frost turned it on and beat Rivera by six. Rivera will take the disappointment of this matchup and continue to work on his craft.

Rivera lost this match by a 12–6 decision.

141 pounds

Felix Lettini vs. (No. 15 at 149lb) Anthony Echemendia.

Wisconsin’s Lettini fell behind 12–3 after period one and could not make up the difference.

Iowa State’s Echemendia is a ranked wrestler in the 149-pound weight class and this can benefit Lettini in the long run. Having the opportunity to wrestle a ranked opponent from a heavier weight class is good experience to have as a young wrestler.

Lettini lost this match 21–6 (technical fall).

149 pounds

No.14 Joseph Zargo vs. Casey Swiderski.

Wisconsin’s Zargo has his hands full with the unranked Cyclone wrestler. After trailing 5–0 to Swiderski, the junior was called for a controversial stall point.

Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling Head Coach Chris Bono was not happy about it and I cannot blame him. Typically, someone pressing forward and trailing in the match is not one who gets called for a stalling but that was the call that was made.

Zargo lost this match by a 9–4 decision.

157 pounds

Luke Mechler vs. No. 19 Cody Chittum.

Wisconsin’s Mechler was in a back and forth battle early but Chittum broke the score open with a 4-point near fall in period two.

Mechler lost the match 15–2 (major decision).

165 pounds

No. 4 Dean Hamiti vs. No. 2 David Carr.

Arguably the most anticipated early season matchup in all of NCAA wrestling –  it certainly did not disappoint. Wisconsin’s Hamiti competed hard with the 2023 National Runner-Up at 165 pounds but he was not able to secure a takedown for the win.

Hamiti lost this match by a 2–0 decision (escape and riding time).

I am extremely confident that these two will tangle again this season!

174 pounds

Luke Condon vs. No. 22 MJ Gaitan.

Wisconsin’s Condon was battling and had a nice shot on the go-ahead single leg take down, but Gaitan flipped the script on him and got the pin.

That’s the razor edge in elite level college wrestling. In this sport it only takes a slight mistake a can get you stuck. The ‘Cali Condor’ will strike again!

Condon lost this match by fall.

184 pounds

Shane Liegel vs. No. 5 Will Feldkamp.

This was a quick match as Iowa State’s Feldkamp blitzed Liegel and scored early.

Down 7–0, Liegel had to take some risks – and with those risks come consequences. Liegel is a graduate student and has significant experience and will not dwell on this result.

Liegel lost this match by fall.

197 pounds

Josh Otto vs. No. 25 Julien Broderson.

Wait – Josh Otto? Yes, Josh Otto bumped up not one – but two weight classes! Sure, bumping up two weight classes and taking on a ranked wrestler can be a recipe for a butt-whooping but not in this match. Otto is a veteran and a dawg.

Hat tip to redshirt-senior for going out there and throwing all he had at his opponent trying to secure a victory.

Otto lost this match by a 5–2 decision.

285 pounds

Peter Christensen vs. No. 7 Yonger Bastida.

Wisconsin’s Christensen ran into a buzz saw on Sunday afternoon. Christensen was trailing 6–2 after two escapes but Iowa State’s Yonger went on a scoring tear.

Christensen lost this match 19–4 (technical fall).


The intent of this prestigious award is to highlight a wrestler from the Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling team that had the most outstanding performance from the event.

I did not select a MAN OF THE MAT winner this week.

Wrestling is an immensely difficult sport full of modern day warriors. Wrestlers never want anything handed to them and everything they receive is earned.

Wisconsin did not have a wrestler that was victorious on Sunday vs. No. 10 Iowa State. I believe members of the Wisconsin Badgers wrestling program may feel disrespected to be awarded MAN OF THE MAT after a tough dual in which they were unable to secure a victory.

Wisconsin wrestling did not get the result they worked for on Sunday but it wasn’t for a lack of hustle, effort or attitude.  These young men left it all out there and simply – just fell short.

Previous Winners of the MAN OF THE MAT:

Michigan State Open – Luke Condon

Lindenwood – Felix Lettini

What’s Next for Wisconsin Badgers Wrestling?

Wisconsin’s 165-pound dawg – the reigning, defending Big Ten Champion, No. 4 Dean Hamiti will be wrestling No. 6 Izzak Olejnik from Oklahoma State at the 2023 NWCA All-Star Classic 6PM on 11/21 at Rec Hall of Penn State in University Park, PA. This will be available on FloWrestling.

Next event for the Wisconsin Badgers wrestling team is the dual vs. Bucknell at 1PM on 12/3 at the UW Field House. Wisconsin’s Dean Hamiti will be honored before the dual and presented his Big Ten Championship ring.

Make sure you get there to support Coach Bono and the boys as they prepare to host the Bison.

Stay tuned to Badger Notes for coverage of the Wisconsin Badgers wrestling program and their upcoming competitions!

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Ryan Eilers covers the Wisconsin Badgers football and wrestling programs for and has had his work published on Bleacher Report. He also makes up 1/4 of the BadgerNotes After Dark podcast crew.