But the festivities didn’t break the Bobcats focus — they only increased it.
Ohio (10-3, 5-3 Mid-American Conference) defeated Old Dominion (4-10, 0-5 MAC) on Sunday, 25-13, to extend its win streak to five matches.
The atmosphere of senior day couldn’t have been any better for Ohio, as Spartak Chino, Phil Wellington and Cody Walters picked up convincing wins. Chino won his match 8-0 by major decision.
“That was one of the most fun duals I’ve ever wrestled in,” Chino said. “The fans were great, I wrestled in front of my family and today was a good time.”
Along with Chino, Cody “Junkyard Dog” Walters would win in dominating fashion in his last match as well, winning 14-0 by disqualification because of excessive stalling from the opponent.
Phil Wellington, however, had the most dominating win of the match. He ended the first round up 3-0 but got takedown after takedown to end the match, winning 21-8.
“I had a lot of emotions going through me during the match,” Wellington said. “My main prerogative was to score as many points as possible, show off for the fans and just give my all for my last match in The Convo.”
Wellington said he would take away many memories from his time at Ohio and things wrestling has taught him, such as hard work and perseverance.
Although the seniors were honored, coach Joel Greenlee was commemorated for picking up his 200th win at Northern Iowa. Greenlee said it was sentimental to watch the team’s seniors be honored.
“It made me a little bit sentimental about senior night,” Greenlee said.
Greenlee said the team’s success this season stems from getting better every day and working on the little things. That mentality will only help Ohio as it gets closer to the MAC tournament.
“I think that it helps just because you don’t get complacent,” Greenlee said. “We’re not necessarily worried about winning the next match; we’re worried about getting better tomorrow.”
The Bobcats came into senior day with a four-match win streak, and they left with a five-match win streak.
But the significance of the match being the last home match for the seniors makes the win even better.
“I’ve had a great four years wrestling for OU, in the Convo, with a great senior class,” Wellington said. “It’s been great to wrestle every single year and have each other’s back. We’re truly a band of brothers.”