Perfect combination of youth and experience

Danny Rice, Sports Reporter

Oregon State young wrestlers step up in victory over Wyoming

Oregon State’s youth and experience was on display again Saturday where they dismantled Wyoming 32-7.

Before the season, head coach Jim Zalesky stated he had seven wrestlers on the roster who have NCAA tournament experience—the most he has ever had in his time at Oregon State. Zalesky also has a young team, with seven of the wrestlers in the starting lineup being redshirt sophomores or younger.

With redshirt sophomore 141-pounder Jack Hathaway missing the match against Wyoming due to injury, the Beavers only had six young wrestlers in the lineup. Five of the six would go on to earn victories—keeping the Beaver’s win streak alive.

Redshirt freshman 184-pounder Corey Greigo says although his team may be young, they make up for their youth by being resilient.

“We’re all tough,” Greigo said. “We are all hungry and ready to go. We have other young guys coming up too, so we may have a young team, but we’re tough.”

“I don’t think we really look at it like that,” said redshirt sophomore 174-pounder Tyler Chay. “I think we do a pretty good job of ignoring the age thing and instead we wrestle tough.”

While the No. 23 Beavers (5-4) may not be having the season they envisioned, Zalesky is proud of the way the young guys have battled and competed. 

“They’ve been doing well,” Zalesky said. “I think they’re progressing and doing the things we’ve been working on in practice, so that’s what I like to see.”

One of the bright spots thus far for the Beavers has been the emergence of Greigo (15-8). Although Greigo dominated his match against Wyoming, he still sees room for improvement. 

“It could be a lot better,” Greigo said. “I’ve had a mediocre year but the key is all the coaches help me get my mind right before matches and that’s my biggest problem. My conditioning is there but sometimes I go out there with a fuzzy mind.”

With the Beavers idle this week, Zalesky is excited to focus on training and picking up the intensity.

“We need a hard training phase,” Zalesky said. “We haven’t had a hard training phase since Nov., so we even need to pick it up more than what we’ve been doing. These next two weeks are very important to us.”

The Beavers have eight remaining dual meets and the Pac-12 championships, which are a little more than a month away. How the Beavers make use of the bye week will be crucial to how they end their season. 

Chay is excited for the next couple weeks of training and finishing the season strong.

“I know we will be training hard,” Chay said. “But I feel like I wrestle my best when we’re training hard.”

On Twitter @DRice1730

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