Ohio began its season Saturday morning in East Lansing, Mich. at the Michigan State Open. The Bobcats got off to a strong start and finished the meet with eight wrestlers placing.
Although no team scores were kept, Ohio got its first look at a handful of teams it will face later in its Mid-American Conference schedule, including Central Michigan and Northern Illinois. The Bobcats also faced several nonconference opponents such as Illinois and Northwestern.
The Bobcats were led individually by senior Alec Hagan, who won the 149-pound weight class after Oklahoma’s Mitch Moore was forced to medically forfeit in the finals. Hagan is off to a strong start in his senior season after not competing last year.
Three Bobcats also claimed third place in their respective brackets. Garrett Thompson finished third in the 157-pound weight class of the Freshman/Sophomore Division after a 5-3 decision over fellow Bobcat Peyten Kellar. Sophomore Jordan Greer placed third in the 197-pound weight class after 11-2 major decision victory over Cal Poly’s Cole Jackson.
Freshmen Zayne Lehman and Sal Perrine both won their respective weight classes in the Freshman/Sophomore Division. Lehman claimed first place in the 184-pound weight class with a 5-3 decision victory, and Perrine won by a 4-3 decision in the 174-pound bracket.
Freshman Dierre Clayton also managed to place, taking fourth in the 125-pound weight class. Redshirt sophomore Jordan Slivka placed third in the 157-pound bracket after a no contest against Ohio State’s Bryce Hepner.
The tournament proved that the Bobcats have a strong mix of young talent and experienced veterans that might be bound for a successful season, especially Hagan. After missing last season, the senior seems to have found his touch again and began his season on the right foot.
Ohio’s next match will be the Navy Classic in Annapolis, Maryland, on Nov. 20. It has finished sixth the previous two times it has competed in the tournament.