Instant Analysis: #2 Iowa defeats #10 Iowa State, 18-15, in thrilling Cy-Hawk wrestling dual

Cody Goodwin
Des Moines Register

IOWA CITY — The Dan Gable Traveling Trophy will stay here in Iowa City yet again.

But the Hawkeyes had to fight hard to keep it this time around.

The second-ranked Iowa wrestling team beat No. 10 Iowa State, 18-15, before a sold-out crowd here at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday afternoon. The Hawkeyes improve to 6-0 this season while the Cyclones, who had won 18 consecutive duals coming into Sunday's meeting, drop to 5-1.

This Cy-Hawk dual was everything it was billed to be and more. The Hawkeyes and Cyclones each won five matches, but Iowa prevailed thanks to bonus points, as Spencer Lee (125), Cobe Siebrecht (157) and Nelson Brands (174) all scored major decisions to lift Iowa to its 18th consecutive victory in this series.

Yes, you read that right. Spencer Lee made his season debut on Sunday, and tallied a 16-5 win over Iowa State's Corey Cabanban at 125 pounds to open Sunday's action. So did Real Woods, who earned an intense, hard-fought 4-2 win over Iowa State's star freshman Casey Swiderski at 141.

But their additions alone did not make this matchup a shoo-in for the Hawkeyes. Iowa State picked up key wins at 133, 149, 184 and 197. The Cyclones made a habit of winning close matches, as four of their five wins were by two points or fewer. Only David Carr, with a 10-4 win over Patrick Kennedy at 165, lit up the scoreboard.

Because of those bonus points, the Hawkeyes remain undefeated against the Cyclones under head coach Tom Brands. But this dual revealed two major things — that Iowa's A-Team is a tough out, yes, and Iowa State absolutely has the look of a Top-10 team this season.

Here's the instant weight-by-weight breakdown of this tremendous Cy-Hawk wrestling dual:

125 pounds: #1 Spencer Lee (Iowa) maj. dec. Corey Cabanban (Iowa State), 16-5

"At 125 pounds, for Iowa … Spencerrrr … LEEEEEEE!"

Spencer Lee made his season debut and gave the Hawkeyes a 4-0 lead after a 16-5 major over Cabanban. In his first match in nearly 12 months, Lee scored a takedown eight seconds in, then scored another and added two turns for a 12-1 lead after just 75 seconds.

Then he started feeling it in his lungs. Lee slowed down quite a bit, to the point that Cabanban scored a takedown in the second period. Lee was never really in danger of losing the match or giving up major points, and finished strong by scoring another takedown in the third period to help secure riding time.

All told, it was a pretty good first match back. He'll get his lungs and shape back with more reps. Most importantly, his knees didn't look like they were bothering him at all.

133 pounds: Ramazan Attasaouv (Iowa State) dec. Cullan Schriever (Iowa), 3-1

This match was pretty even, all things considered. Schriever got to Attasaouv's legs a few different times in the first and second periods, but just couldn't finish.

When Attasaouv finally connected on a shot late in the third, he did finish, which was the difference here. Attasaouv picked up Schriever's leg on the edge, walked back in-bounds, and finished on the edge for two points — then rode out the final 20 seconds to win the match, making the score 4-3, Iowa, after two.

141 pounds: #2 Real Woods (Iowa) dec. #12 Casey Swiderski (Iowa State), 4-2

Real Woods' Iowa debut results in a hard-fought 4-2 win over Casey Swiderski — one of those matches where Woods gets the win and looks good, but Swiderski still looked pretty good despite taking the loss.

Woods dictated much of the pace in the first period and forced Swiderski into a stall call, then got another with a mean-yet-fundamental rideout in the second, which effectively locked up riding-time for Woods.

Things got a little interesting in the third.

Woods escaped, then Swiderski kept his heavy hands active and scored a takedown to tie it at 2-2. Woods escaped again for a 3-2 lead then defended through the end of the match. Things got chippy afterward. The refs separated Woods and Swiderski, then Woods egged on the rowdy Carver crowd after giving Iowa a 7-3 lead.

149 pounds: #8 Paniro Johnson (Iowa State) dec. #6 Max Murin (Iowa), 3-1 (SV)

This match went about as expected.

Murin wants to wrestle in a phone booth, and kept his hands on Johnson virtually all match and looked for angles, of which there were few. Johnson exploded through his shots when the windows opened up, which wasn't often.

But in overtime, Johnson shot, Murin defended well enough, then Johnson shot again, and converted the match-winning takedown right before the sudden-victory period ended. Big-time win, both for Johnson and for Iowa State. That made the team score 7-6, Iowa, after four weights.

157 pounds: #25 Cobe Siebrecht (Iowa) maj. dec. Jason Kraisser (Iowa State), 10-2

Siebrecht was the favorite in this one, but their funky styles made this an intriguing matchup — and right away, they locked up: Siebrecht with a body-lock, Kraisser with double-overs and a leg snaked inside.

But Siebrecht repositioned his feet, stepped in and launched Kraisser up and back down to the mat with a high-flying throw that resulted in a takedown and four back points for a 6-0 lead, sending Carver into a frenzy.

Siebrecht fended off various attacks by Kraisser, then scored off a counter late in the third period for a 9-2 lead and rode out the rest of the period for a riding-time point, making the final a 10-2 major decision.

Bonus points are always big, but that was especially big for the Hawkeyes, who took an 11-6 lead into halftime.

A general view as thousands of fans watch wrestlers being introduced during a Cy-Hawk Series NCAA men's wrestling dual between Iowa and Iowa State, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa.

165 pounds: #3 David Carr (Iowa State) dec. #13 Patrick Kennedy (Iowa), 10-4

These two guys will very likely end up on the NCAA podium in March, but there's clearly a little bit of a gap between them — at least on this day.

Carr rolled up four takedowns and was sniffing bonus points in the third period here against Kennedy. Carr had a serious speed advantage in neutral. He defended Kennedy's shots well and immediately took advantage with re-attacks. Carr prevailed 10-4, which made it 11-9, Iowa, with four matches left.

174 pounds: #15 Nelson Brands (Iowa) maj. dec. MJ Gaitan (Iowa State), 13-5

Iowa State coach Kevin Dresser threw a curveball here, sending out true freshman MJ Gaitan rather than entrenched starter Julien Broderson. It made sense. Broderson holds position really well, and he likely could've slowed Nelson Brands down some. But Gaitan has enough of a volatile funky gene in his style that it gave the Cyclones an outside shot at creating weird positions, and perhaps points, in this match.

Unfortunately for Dresser, Nelson Brands was ready for virtually everything. He took Gaitan feet-to-back in the first period and ultimately scored four takedowns, plus a point for riding-time, in a 13-5 major decision, which gave Iowa a 15-9 lead with three matches left.

184 pounds: #5 Marcus Coleman (Iowa State) dec. #8 Abe Assad (Iowa), 3-2

Another even matchup — and one that Assad could've won. He was in deep on shots in both the first and second periods, but Coleman is incredibly hard to score on. He defended really well each time Assad got in, fighting hands and using heavy hips.

After trading escapes in the second and third periods, Coleman scored a takedown with 26 seconds left in the third, which held up as the match-winner, making the team score 15-12, Iowa, with two matches left.

197 pounds: #6 Yonger Bastida (Iowa State) dec. #2 Jacob Warner (Iowa), 4-3

Bastida gives Iowa State a second consecutive win in this dual — the first for either team in this dual, by the way — by scoring a pair of takedowns in the first period and fending off multiple Warner shots late in a 4-3 win. A lot of great action in that match from start to finish. Warner had his opportunities and Bastida did just enough.

That tied the dual at 15-15 with one match left.

285 pounds: #4 Tony Cassioppi (Iowa) dec. #10 Sam Schuyler (Iowa State), 9-2

Tony Cassioppi closed this thing down with three takedowns and nearly three minutes of riding-time. Schuyler put a scare into the crowd when he locked up a cradle in the third, but Cassioppi broke his lock and escaped danger and ultimately secured the win — and the dual.

Cody Goodwin covers wrestling and high school sports for the Des Moines Register. Follow him on Twitter at@codygoodwin.