Wrestling falls to Warhawks

Neal Hogden

After the score was back-and-forth for the majority of the match, the UW-Whitewater wrestling team eventually pulled away to win 33-17 over UW Oshkosh on Tuesday in Whitewater.

The Titans compiled 17 points with freshman Wesam Alabed, junior Corey Knudsen, and sophomore Colten Cashmore all earning victories at 141, 149, and 184-pound levels, respectively. A forfeit by both teams at the 125-pound level opened the match.

Alabed’s victory went all three rounds as the Rosemont, Illinois, native eventually took the match via decision over Whitewater’s Jamie Valdez. Heading into the third round, the duo was knotted up at two points each, with Alabed scoring his two points on a takedown of Valdez. Alabed then pulled away in the third round, outscoring Valdez 4-1 in the frame.

Shortly after Alabed’s victory, Knudsen wrestled his way to a 17-1 technical fall victory over Whitewater’s Tommy George six minutes and 48 seconds into the match. During the match, Knudsen scored points on four takedowns and added four points by nearly pinning George in the first round.

After jumping out to a quick lead in the first round, Knudsen said his mindset had to change to finish the match strong.

“I would say that going into every match you want to go out there and score as many points as you can,” Knudsen said. “When I got out to such a good lead, the match became more of a match for the team instead of myself. By going out there and getting a major, a tech or a pin, that would have put our team in the lead at the time for the dual [match].”

Cashmore then went out and recorded a close victory for UWO against Christian Dischler of Whitewater, 3-2. His decision helped the Titans close the deficit on the Warhawks, but it wasn’t enough to bring the team all the way back.

After the first round, Cashmore trailed Dischler 1-2 as Dischler recorded a takedown and Cashmore escaped the takedown attempt. Cashmore then escaped Dischler’s grips again in the second round to tie the score up at two apiece. In the third round, Cashmore picked up another point to win the decision and score three points for the team.

Cashmore said his strategy when wrestling in a close match is always very calculated.

“I am always looking to score points no matter the score of the match,” Cashmore said. “However, in close matches I am just making sure I am taking good quality scoring chances. I am still looking to be aggressive, I am just making sure they are good scoring opportunities where I can keep myself in good position and out of danger.”

Head coach Efrain Alaya said he was pleased with his three winners, especially with the heart each wrestler showed during their respective matches.

“Knudsen, Cashmore and Alabed all wrestled well against Whitewater,” Alaya said. “They stuck to the game plan and wrestled with a lot of heart and because of that, they were able to come out on top. These three have really started the season off on the right foot, as have many of their team members. It was their night, and they really proved they deserve to be here.”

The Titan wrestling team continues its season in the Don Gable Open at home this weekend in the Kolf Center Fieldhouse. The action starts Saturday at 9:00 a.m.