By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
The Oklahoma Outlaws are sitting pretty after day one at the Junior Greco-Roman Dual Nationals. The host team destroyed Georgia in round one 68-2, pushed past a scrappy Pennsylvania team 38-30 in the semis, and handled Iowa with surprising ease in the Pool D finals Wednesday night to advance to the Gold/Silver Pool Thursday morning.
Team Iowa entered the dual as the top seed in the Pool, but that didn't deter an ambitious Oklahoma team. The Outlaws are the defending National Champions in Freestyle, and they're clearly on a warpath to add Greco to the resume this year.
The dual started off with a 14-3 tech fall from Brik Filippo, the State Champ from Tuttle, over Nelson Brands. Iowa rebounded with a 22-9 tech fall by Matt Malcomb over Payton Scott of Sand Springs, but Jaryn Curry got the Outlaws back on track with a huge upset. The State Champion from Choctaw came down hard on No. 9 nationally ranked Fargo All-American Colton Clingenpeel for a 10-0 tech fall.
Brandon Haas returned the favor with an 8-0 upset over State Champ Nick Mahan of Lawton MacArthur, but Oklahoma swept the next three straight matches. State Champ Dan Baker of Sulphur teched Bailey Chyma 18-8, State Champ Bear Hughes of Coweta pinned Isaac Bartel in 1:25, and Tanner Hawkins of Weatherford pinned Caleb Ring in 4:50 for a 23-9 lead.
Iowa broke the streak as No. 11 Carter Isley took out State Runner-Up Gage Johnson of Norman North with an 8-0 decision at heavy weight, but Oklahoma continued to push the lead in the lower weights.
Crescent's Alex Fields picked up a 16-4 tech fall over Cobe Siebrecht and MacArthur's State Champ Wyatt Adams pinned Carter Weeks in 1:53 before Iowa found another win. Drew Bennett pinned Alec McDoulett in 4:35, but Fargo National Champ Dalton Duffield of Westmoore clinched the dual with an 11-0 tech fall over Brenden Baker. Sallisaw State Champ Jett Taylor tacked on the exclamation point with a 0:45 pin of Dante Tacchia to make the score 41-19 and the Okies forfeited the last two weights to finish 41-29.
The Outlaws will return to action Thursday morning against California, Florida, and Minnesota Blue before the placement match. California placed second in Pool C after falling to Michigan Blue in a close 34-33 knockdown drag-out. Florida placed second in Pool B after going down 42-25 to Illinois. Minnesota Blue is the top-seeded favorite and didn't even blink as they bulldozed through the A Pool by a minimum of 38 points per dual.