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Bedlam wrestling: Sooners will try to carry momentum into Bedlam dual vs. Oklahoma State

Oklahoma's Dom Demas and the Sooners will host Oklahoma State in this season's first edition of Bedlam wrestling at 1 p.m. Sunday. [IAN MAULE/TULSA WORLD]
Oklahoma's Dom Demas and the Sooners will host Oklahoma State in this season's first edition of Bedlam wrestling at 1 p.m. Sunday. [IAN MAULE/TULSA WORLD]

NORMAN — Three valuable wins last week, including one over a ranked Stanford squad, gave the OU wrestling team a boost at exactly the right time.

But the 19th-ranked Sooners know the momentum only means something if they can carry it over into the season’s first edition of Bedlam, when OU hosts No. 5 Oklahoma State at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Lloyd Noble Center, televised on Fox Sports Oklahoma.

“We all have a lot of things we’ve got to improve still,” said OU’s Dom Demas, who is ranked seventh nationally at 141 pounds. “We’re still working toward things. Last week helped us out. Some people did really well, and some people came up short, but they know what they gotta work on.”

With the event being in Lloyd Noble, 2,500 fans will be allowed to attend.

Bedlam is only half the day for the Cowboys, who will head back to Stillwater for a 7 p.m. dual against Little Rock at Gallagher-Iba Arena, which will be broadcast on ESPN+.

But for the Sooners, all the focus is on Oklahoma State, which has won 18 of the last 19 meetings in the series. OU’s last win came in 2013.

“Coming off those three wins last week definitely helps,” Demas said. “OSU isn’t gonna lay over. It’s still gonna be tough. We’re still gonna have to have some people pull through.

“Usually the key to success in any dual meet is getting bonus points. Turning a three-point match into a six-point match is huge, so when we’ve got a chance to win, we’ve got to really hammer it in to get bonus points. And then we’ll have some close matches, too, and we need to win every close one.”

Coach Lou Rosselli came to OU with the goal of building it back into a nationally respected program, and his work is slowly starting to bear some fruit.

“Winning is habitual,” Rosselli said. “The more you do it, the more you’re used to doing it. The expectations and the standards are winning here at OU. So every week is big when you’re in the win column.

“It’s always important to keep getting your hand raised. Those three wins last week were important. It gives us a little momentum for this week, a little more excitement for the dual, and that’s what we want here at Oklahoma.”

In terms of the big picture, Rosselli is pleased with the direction of his program, even if it hasn’t come as quickly as he hoped.

“I’m competitive. I want to win yesterday,” he said. “But at the same time, getting the right people, building the Olympic program, getting our donors on board with how the Olympic program works — all these things matter. They’re pillars of what you have to do.

“Having the right people in your program, and having an Olympic program that attracts the best people in the country, that’s paramount to what we’re doing. You can be a good team without it, but to be a great team, you’ve got to have it.”

Scott Wright

A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and... Read more ›