IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa hadn't beaten the rival Cyclones by such a wide margin in nearly two decades — and coach Tom Brands was still stewing over missed opportunities.
Such is life for the Hawkeyes wrestling team, where the national title is the main goal each and every season.
The fourth-ranked Iowa wrestling team won nine of 10 matches and routed rival Iowa State 32-3 on Saturday night, winning its ninth straight dual meet over the Cyclones.
Top-ranked Matt McDonough and Derek St. John cruised to easy decisions for the fourth-ranked Hawkeyes (6-0), who improved to 61-16-2 against Iowa State (0-2).
"I feel like we left points off the board in individual matches," Brands said.
Not many though.
Mike Evans and Ethen Lofthouse posted early wins for Iowa. The Hawkeyes led 14-3 at intermission and finished off one of the more lopsided meets in the history of the rivalry — one of the biggest in collegiate Olympic sports.
Iowa State's Kyven Gadson was the only Cyclones wrestler to win a match as Iowa State fell to 0-7 against Brands.
"We got outfought. We got outhustled," Iowa State coach Kevin Jackson said.
Few expected the rebuilding Cyclones to have a shot at the Hawkeyes, who are among a small group of legitimate NCAA title contenders that includes top-ranked Minnesota and two-time defending champions Penn State.
Iowa had complete control by the break.
Evans set the early tone, pounding freshman Tanner Weatherman 10-1 for four points, and Lofthouse followed with a convincing 10-3 decision over Iowa State's Boaz Beard.
Gadson survived a furious rally by freshman Nathan Burak to win 5-4 at 197 pounds, but Hawkeyes heavyweight Bobby Telford rallied in the third period to beat Matt Gibson 3-2.
The Hawkeyes were up 10-3 when McDonough, a two-time NCAA champion, made quick work of Iowa State's Ryak Finch for his 34th straight victory. Iowa then sent out Tony Ramos, ranked second at 133 pounds, and he beat promising true freshman John Meeks 18-7 to essentially clinch the meet with four matches left.
Hawkeyes Mark Ballweg and Michael Kelly followed with decisions and St. John pounded freshman Logan Molina 16-5.