DEKALB, Ill. -- The Northern Illinois University wrestling team was dominant as it scored its first dual victory of the season, defeating Bucknell, 24-10, in Victor E. Court Friday.
"They came out to fight and it was gritty tough wrestling," NIU head coach Ryan Ludwig said. "Like I said before, they're a tough team, but I was proud of our guys for battling through situations and finding a way to win in those tight close matches.
"I think we could've separated ourselves a little bit more in those matches had we done a better job on top and bottom. If we ride a little better we score or we can take time away from our opponent and further the gap between us and them."
The Huskies won seven of the 10 bouts, four by two points or less, and scored a fall victory.
NIU raced out to a 6-0 lead when Bryce West and Drew West each scored victories in their respective bouts. Bryce West kicked things off with a 6-1 victory over Brandon Seidman at 125. After falling behind 2-0 after the first period at 133, Drew West erupted in the second period with six points to take a 6-3 advantage over Darren Miller en route to a 7-5 victory.
The Bison got on the board a 12-10 victory at 141, but the Huskies responded in the next two bouts. McCoy Kent scored a 9-7 win at 149, while Mason Kauffman battled to an 8-6 decision at 157.
Following a 15-7 win for Bucknell at 165, Kenny Moore posted a 4-2 victory in overtime over Frankie Guida. Sophomore Brit Wilson, an NCAA qualifier a year ago, pinned Brandon Stokes at 5:57 in the 184 bout to seal the Huskie victory.
After a loss at 197, Max Ihry posted a 6-1 win at 285 to give NIU its first home win of the season.
The Huskies return to the mat Sunday when NIU welcomes Rider and Harper to Victor E. Court for the Huskie Duals. The first match begins at 12 p.m. against Rider with the Harper match to follow. Both events will be available via NIUTube on NIUHuskies.com.
125: Bryce West (NIU) dec. Brandon Seidman (Bucknell), 6-1
133: Drew West (NIU) dec. Darren Miller (Bucknell), 7-5
141: Noah Levett (Bucknell) dec. Caleb Brooks (NIU), 12-10
149: McCoy Kent (NIU) dec. Matt Kolonia (Bucknell), 9-7
157: Mason Kauffman (NIU) dec. Jaden Fisher (Bucknell), 8-6
165: Zach Hartman (Bucknell) maj. dec. Caden McWhirter (NIU), 15-7
174: Kenny Moore (NIU) dec. Frankie Guida (Bucknell), SV-1 4-2
184: Brit Wilson (NIU) fall Brandon Stokes (Bucknell), 5:57
197: Drew Phipps (Bucknell) dec. Gage Braun (NIU), 4-1
285: Max Ihry (NIU) dec. Nate Feyrer (Bucknell), 6-1