Central Missouri Wrestling had a season-high of six wrestlers place in Hastings annual Cusatis Open on Saturday, Jan. 11. Dominique Hampton led the Mules with 14 points and a second-place finish at 184 pounds. Conner Dalton also placed second at 141 pounds with 12 points.
Hampton went undefeated Saturday morning to find himself in the championship match of the 184 pound bracket. The 184 pound junior opened the tournament with a fall in 5:35 over Ottawa’s Hunter Dunn-Remigio. Hampton’s next victories were won by decision over Jason Watkins of Concordia (Neb.) and Midland’s Dylan Buschow.
In the semifinal match, Hampton defeated Northwestern’s Luke Jenness in a 16-7 major decision victory to advance to the 184 pound championship match. Hampton lost to fellow MIAA competitor Nate Panagaskis of Newman in the championship match by a 10-2 major decision.
As the runner-up at 141 pounds, Dalton also went undefeated in his opening rounds to find himself in championship match. The sophomore transfer received a bye in his first round, then picked up a 14-5 major decision victory over Midland’s Prestin Vondra. Dalton won by decision in the quarterfinal and semifinal matches over Tyler Deen of Nebraska and Edrich Nortje of Hastings. In the championship match, Dalton lost to Nebraska’s Christian Miller in a 6-0 decision to be named the open’s 141 pound runner-up. Finishing 3-1 on the day, Dalton improves his season record to 10-12.
Central Missouri saw three third-place finishes in John Feeney, Zachary Hazen and Chase Miller.
At 133 pounds, Feeney suffered his only loss of the day in the quarterfinals by a 4-2 decision to York’s Pierce Mederios. The senior won his final four matches to earn the third-place finish while totaling 11.5 points. With five victories in the classic, Feeney leads the Mules with a record of 15-9.
The Mules new transfer, Zach Hazen, totaled 8.5 points in his third-place finish at 197 pounds. Hazen suffered a 6-2 decision loss in the semifinals to Nebraska’s Cade Svoboda to move into the consolation bracket. Hazen won his final two matches to end the open 3-1.
At 285 pounds, Miller went 5-1 and recorded the team-high of 15.5 points with two fall victories, one overtime victory and two medical forfeits to earn the third-place finish in the heavyweight bracket.
The Mules final place winner was newcomer John Ridle at 165 pounds. The freshman transfer went 4-2 in the classic and totaled 8.5 points, earning two decision victories, one 19-4 technical fall win over York’s Lennorise Echols and one 15-7 major decision win over Northwestern’s Carter Bechler.
Also competing in the Cusatis Open was Dakota Thevel, Austin Morgan, Zion Vasquez, Jack Goin and Joe Brady. Thevel went 3-2 and totaled five points while competing in the 149 pound bracket.
At 157 pounds, Morgan went 1-2 and finished with 0.5 points. Goin picked up two points with a 15-3 major decision win in the 174 pound bracket.At the open, Central Missouri recorded seven major decision wins, five falls and two technical fall victories. Thevel and Hazen each finished with two technical fall wins while Feeney and Miller led the Mules with two falls each.
Mules Wrestling has a quick turnaround as they are set to host Fort Hays State on Wednesday, Jan. 15, in Warrensburg. The MIAA dual is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in UCM’s Recreation Center.