The No. 17-ranked Fort Hays State wrestling team kicked off the 2018-19 season on Thursday with the annual Black and Gold Scrimmage inside Gross Memorial Coliseum. For the third time in four years, the black team came out on top, this time by a score of 34-29.
The scrimmage commenced with redshirt-freshman Jonathan Ball and newcomer freshman Jonathan Green. The 149-pound bout began with takedown in the first period from Ball. In the second frame, Ball escaped Green's grasp, then picked up another two takedowns and was awarded a ride time point. Ball defeated Green with an 8-1 major decision. The black squad got off to a 4-0 lead in the match after the first bout.
In the second bout, freshman Nathan Dotson took on fellow newcomer Isaiah Luellen in a matchup of 165-pound wrestlers. Luellen took control after the first period with a 6-2 lead. In the second period, Luellen picked up 15 points and defeated Dotson with a 21-6 technical fall. After the first two bouts, the gold squad was on the board and led the match 5-4.
The third bout featured freshman Kody Collins and junior Jordan Davis. Davis fell behind early with a 2-0 takedown from Collins, but then picked up a reversal and pinned Collins in 1:32 into the first period. The fall increased the gold's lead to 11-4.
The 125-pound exhibition match featured Mason Turner and Collin Cole. Turner reversed fortunes for the black squad when he pinned Cole just 1:36 into the first frame.
True freshmen Payton Sadowski and Broderick Green faced off in the other 125-pound bout. In the first period Sadowski earned two takedowns and took a 4-2 lead into the second frame. Sadowski led the rest of the second period and picked up a takedown along the way to a 6-4 lead over Green. After Green knotted the bout up at 6-6, Sadowski escaped Green's grasp and pulled away with the 8-6 decision after being awarded a ride time point.
In the 133-pound exhibition bout, true freshmen Cole Zebley and Devin Onwugbufor took to the mat against each other. In the first period, Onwugbufor and Zebley exchanged a couple takedowns and escapes, while Onwugbufor led the bout 4-2. For the rest of the match, Onwugbufor took over and picked up a 12-5 major decision.
The other 133-pound bout, freshman Riley Tubbs faced off with junior Conrad Cole. Tubbs and Cole battled until the end when Tubbs was victorious with a 4-2 decision.
Senior Dy'Juan Carney and newcomer Josh Lenker battled each other in the 141-pound exhibition. Lenker took control of the match and downed Carney with a 12-8 sudden victory in overtime. At the halfway point in the scrimmage, the black squad held the close 18-15 lead.
In the other 141-pound weight class, junior Wyatt Alvis faced off with redshirt-freshman Pedro Ordonez. Ordonez controlled the entire match and walked away with a 16-1 technical fall victory over Alvis.
Anthony Scantlin and No. 5 ranked Efe Osaghae battled in the 157-pound bout. After Scantlin tied the match 2-2 with an escape in the first period, Osaghae picked up a takedown and never looked back. Coming off an All-American honor, Osaghae picked up a 12-6 decision to give the gold squad the 23-18 advantage in the match.
Moving up a weight class to 165 pounds, redshirt-freshmen Aryus Jones and Conrad Vajnar battled it out on the mat. Jones erupted to an 18-0 technical fall victory in the second period to knot the match up at 23 all.
The other 165-pound bout featured true freshmen Christopher Ball and Isaiah Luellen. This was Luellen's second match of the night and he put up a tough fight in a rematch of the 2015 KSHSAA 3-2-1A state title bout in the 152-pound weight class. Ball came out on top with a narrow 11-8 decision to grab the 26-23 lead for the gold squad.
Sophomore Marty Verhaeghe took on senior transfer Nick Meck in the 174-pound bout. In a match where both wrestlers fought hard until the end, Meck came out on top over Verhaeghe with the 6-3 decision.
At 184 pounds, senior Micquille Robinson battled against newcomer Tyler Boone. Neither wrestler could gain an advantage on the other in the first two periods. Robinson grabbed a quick reversal, takedown and a ride time point to defeat Boone with a 5-1 decision.
In the penultimate bout of the evening, No. 4 ranked Brandon Ball battle Jonathan Green. Ball picked up a takedown and 4-point near fall in the first period. In the second frame, Ball did the exact same thing and took a commanding 12-0 lead. Ball put away Green with another 4-point near fall and a ride time point to defeat Green with the 17-0 technical fall victory.
In the final match of the scrimmage, sophomore A.J. Cooper faced off against Jordan Davis. In his second bout of the night, Davis grabbed a 2-0 lead after a takedown in the early-going of the first period. From then on, Cooper used a reversal, a couple 2-point near falls and a ride time point to put away Davis with a 10-3 decision to give the black squad the ultimate 34-29 win.
The Tigers begin regular season action at the Bethany Swede Open next Saturday (Nov. 10). The tournament is set to commence from Lindsborg, Kan. at 9 a.m.