With the Big Ten dual slate starting next weekend, the 17th-ranked Huskers had a pair of duals against both Gardner-Webb and Cambpell on Saturday in Buies Creek, N.C.
The Huskers took care of business and were fairly dominant along the way as they won 16 of the 20 matches and beat both teams 37-6. With the wins, Nebraska improves to 4-2 in dual action on the year
*FloWrestling individual rankings used
Against Gardner-Webb, No. 8 Liam Cronin started strong on the way to a 13-3 major decision win against Drew West.
Against Campbell’s Zak Thompson, Cronin jumped out to an early 6-0 lead before scoring a late second-period takedown to go up 8-2. In the third, Cronin poured on ten more points with a pair of takedowns, four nearfall points, an escape and another point for riding time. Cronin finished up with an 18-3 tech fall win.
With the two wins, Cronin is now 11-2 on the season.
Still trying to figure out who will start this year at 133, Nebraska went with senior Boo Dryden against Gardner-Webb’s Todd Carter. Dryden dropped the match via 3-2 decision. He’s now 6-4 on the year.
Against Campbell’s Dominic Zaccone, an NCAA qualifier, the Huskers went with junior Alex Thomsen. Thomsen wasn’t able to get much offense going as he fell 4-1 by decision. He’s now 2-3 on the year.
Nebraska’s No. 5-ranked Brock Hardy had a solid day. He started things off against Gardner-Webb’s Zach Price, winning a 4-0 decision.
Then against Campbell’s Shannon Hanna, Hardy blew through for an early takedown before racking up 2:49 in riding time as he rode out the first period. After a scoreless second period, Hardy started with a third-period escape, but Hanna cut the lead to 3-2 with a takedown of his own. Hardy then scored an escape and a takedown before putting on a hard ride and pinning Hanna on the edge of the mat with just eight seconds left in the match. Hardy leads the team with six pins on the year.
With the pair of wins, Hardy improves to 17-2 on the year.
Another weight where the Huskers went with two different wrestlers, they sent out redshirt freshman Blake Cushing first against Gardner-Webb. Cushing was able to beat Corbin Dion 5-2 for his first career dual victory in his first career dual. Cushing also pinned Domenic DeFalco of Campbell in an extra match. With the wins, Cushing is now 10-3 on the year, most of those matches coming at 141 pounds before moving up to 149 this weekend.
Against Campbell’s Chris Rivera, Nebraska went with regular starter Dayne Morton. Morton started things with a first-period takedown before scoring another point on a stalling call on Rivera. Morton then rode out Rivera in the second period before scoring an escape in the third on the way to a 5-0 decision win. With the win, Morton is now 3-7 on the year.
Nebraska’s top-ranked Peyton Robb showed why he’s the best as he made quick work of Gardner-Webb’s Tyler Brignola. In just the first period, Robb recorded two takedowns and 12 nearfall points on the way to a 16-1 tech-fall win, his fifth of the year.
Against Campbell, Robb won via forfeit.
With the win over Brignola, Robb is now 14-0 on the year.
For Nebraska, No. 15-ranked Bubba Wilson started things off with a 4-2 overtime loss to Gardner-Webb’s RJ Mosley. Mosley is an honorable mention in the rankings.
Wilson then went up against Campbell’s Dom Baker. Wilson threw Baker on his back early in the first period, going up 6-0 with the takedown and four nearfall points. While on top, Wilson then locked up a cradle and got the pinfall win.
Wilson is now 9-6 on the year.
For Nebraska, No. 2-ranked Mikey Labriola was dominant as he took care of business. First, Labriola beat Gardner-Webb’s Andrew Wilson via 17-2 tech fall in the second period.
Against Campbell’s Cole Rees, Labriola built up a 6-2 lead after two periods but poured it on in the third in search of another tech fall. Labriola scored five takedowns and an escape but fell short of the tech, downing Rees via 18-6 major decision.
Labriola is now 15-0 on the year
For Nebraska, No. 15 Lenny Pinto picked up a pair of bonus-point wins. Against Gardner-Webb’s Jha-Quan Anderson, Pinto quickly put him on his back for the pinfall win in the first period.
Pinto started fast against Campbell’s Caleb Hopkins with a takedown just eight seconds in. He then added two nearfall points and another takedown to go up 6-2 heading into the second period. In the second, Pinto gave up an escape to start but secured another takedown late in the period.
In the third, Pinto gave up the opening takedown to Hopkins, a two-time NCAA qualifier. The young Husker then scored a reversal and another late takedown to earn the 14-6 major decision win.
With the wins, Pinto is now 9-5 on the year.
Much like Pinto, Nebraska’s No. 15 Silas Allred started with a first-period pinfall, this one against Gardner-Webb’s Sam Mora.
Against Campbell’s Levi Hopkins, Allred struck first with an early takedown. Hopkins then scored an escape before getting another in the second period to even things up at 2-all.
In the third, Allred took the lead back with a quick escape before blasting through for double-leg takedown. Allred then gave up an escape before scoring another late takedown. With the ride-out Allred secured the 8-3 decision win.
Allred is now 14-4 on the year with five wins via pinfall.
Nebraska heavyweight Cale Davidson started his Saturday with a 16-1 tech fall over Gardner-Webb’s Abe Preston.
Then against Campbell’s No. 20-ranked Taye Ghadiali, an NCAA qualifier, Davidson gave up the first takedown before getting an escape. In the second period, Ghaniali got another takedown before a Davidson escape. Davidson then started the third with another escape, cutting the deficit to 4-3. Davidson took a late shot and nearly got the takedown but it wasn’t enough as he fell via 5-3 decision.
Davidson is now 7-10 on the season.
What’s Next for Nebraska?
Nebraska opens Big Ten play when it hosts No. 9 Minnesota Friday night at 8 p.m. at the Devaney Center.