2023-24 Missouri Wrestling

New Starters Moore, Gioffre Adding To Missouri Wrestling's Point Potential

New Starters Moore, Gioffre Adding To Missouri Wrestling's Point Potential

First-year starters Kade Moore and Logan Gioffre are climbing the ranks and adding to the scoring potential for the second-ranked Missouri wrestling team.

Jan 26, 2024 by Matthew Smith
New Starters Moore, Gioffre Adding To Missouri Wrestling's Point Potential

Missouri entered the college wrestling season with a star-powered roster capable of taking the Tigers to new program heights in a couple months when the season wraps up in Mizzou’s backyard. 

Two-time NCAA champion Keegan O’Toole, four other returning All-Americans and a veteran cast provide the Tigers with a point-scoring nucleus that could eclipse Missouri’s previous-best finish at the NCAA Championships — the third-place rung Brian Smith’s squad reached in 2007. 

After undisputed #1 Penn State, the margins are tight near the top of the latest Flowrestling team tournament rankings. Mizzou is currently ranked second with 74.5 points. Virginia Tech, which took the Tigers to the wire in a Jan. 2 dual meet, is ranked 10th with 44.5. 

Here’s some perspective on that 30-point margin. During the Mizzou-Virginia Tech dual, the Hokies picked up down-to-the-wire wins from Cooper Flynn (125) and Bryce Andonian (157) over Missouri’s Noah Surtin and Brock Mauller. Since then, Surtin has ascended to #4 at 125 while Flynn has settled in at #9 and Mauller has moved up to #5 while Andonian is ranked eighth. But if Flynn and Andonian traded places in the rankings with their two Tiger counterparts, Mizzou and Virginia Tech would be even in the rankings. 

That’s an illustration of the traffic jam inside the top 10 after runaway leader Penn State. It also underscores how important every point-scorer could be in March at the NCAA Championships in Kansas City. 

This brings us to Kade Moore and Logan Gioffre, a pair of first-year starters who have played key roles for the Tigers in January and could be pivotal players in the postseason when Missouri tries to run down another conference title and an NCAA team trophy.  

Moore’s pin at 133 against then-#5 Sam Latona opened the door for Missouri’s comeback win against Virginia Tech, and Gioffre’s 8-1 victory at 149 against All-American Jaden Abas helped the Tigers notch a 39-0 win against Stanford in their most-recent outing. 

After beginning the season behind Zeke Seltzer on the Mizzou depth chart, Moore jumped into the starting lineup in December and has since gone 5-0 with bonus points in his last four outings. He’s 9-2 overall and hasn’t lost since Dec. 2. 

“We have talked about that (opportunity), if you're a second- or third-string guy at one point, you never know when you're gonna get an opportunity and you have to make the most of it,” Smith said. “(Moore) just keeps improving.” 

This is no surprise to Smith and the Tigers. 

“He was talented as all get up when he first got here,” said Smith, who watched Moore battle through injuries and illnesses before his recent breakthrough. (I thought) if this kid ever got healthy and in the lineup, it'd be really interesting to see what he would do. 

“This is the longest stretch in his two years being at Mizzou that he's been in the practice room and healthy and you're seeing the results of it. He has an opportunity to do great things and help the team.” 

Gioffre, on the other hand, went 28-12 in his first two seasons at Missouri after starting his career at Cal Poly. He seized the 149-pound job after Mauller moved up to 157. 

The win over Abas moved Gioffre up to #11 in the rankings and pushed his record to 5-4 on the season, but that doesn’t tell the full story. His four losses came against #5 Chance Lamer, #3 Kyle Parco, #10 Kannon Webster and #2 Caleb Henson. Webster beat Gioffre in overtime and Henson beat him 6-4. 

“He doesn't even get a top-15-to-20 guy or the #30 guy. It's always in the top 10,” Smith said. “It's good for him, though. He'll be ready when he gets to the postseason. He's not going to be fazed when he's wrestling. He has had a tough, tough schedule so far and has handled it well.”

Lineup Notes and Injury Updates

Seltzer filled in at 141 for injured starter Josh Edmond and notched a 9-6 win against Stanford’s Jason Miranda. 

“Seltzer had a good win and did a good job against a tough kid,” Smith said. “We know we have two really good guys there, so we'll bring both of them on this (upcoming) road trip (to West Virginia and Cornell) and figure out who's gonna who's gonna go.”  

At 174, the Tigers welcomed starter Peyton Mocco back to the lineup for the first time since Dec. 17 and he scored a 21-8 major decision against Stanford’s Ty Monteiro.

“I thought I threw him out there too early,” Smith said. “He isn't 100 percent, but as his previous match progressed, he got more confidence in what he was doing. Peyton did not want to miss any more events. Now he has had some time to train again and heal up some more. By the time we hit West Virginia he's going to be a lot healthier.”

At 197, sixth-ranked Rocky Elam has ramped up his action after missing time earlier in the season. 

“He wrestled a lot better in this past match.” Smith said “I definitely see he's doing a lot more volume in the practice room and I know that's making a big difference. He's getting better and realized he's got to pick it up, too. There's urgency involved in his training, too I've definitely seen him getting better.” 


The Tigers are 7-0 duals with a month left in the regular season, all 10 starters are ranked and eight are in the top 11 of their respective weight classes. Missouri is off to its best start since 2021. 

In their seven duals, the Tigers have collected 39 bonus-point victories and averaged 33 team points per meet. 

Mizzou has taken a “Do One More” attitude and Smith has instilled a “Take the Stairs” mantra within the wrestling room. 

“It's a part of Tiger Style,” Smith said. “There's belief, compete one more, expect to win one more. If everybody does a little bit extra at things, we all get a little bit better. A program collectively becomes greater. At the end of practice, you will always notice that there's guys doing extra things

“This team right now is wrestling well. We're getting healthy. We have a tough schedule ahead. We've talked about that. And they're handling it pretty well. A lot of guys are challenging themselves and stepping it up. Our conditioning continues to go through live wrestling and sparring and drilling. So everything we’re doing is for a reason.”  

Up Next 

The Tigers are back on the road Friday night for a dual at West Virginia before they head to Ithaca, N.Y. to take on Cornell. 

“They have a good team,” Smith said of West Virginia. “They’ve been wrestling well and have beat some solid teams out there. It'll be a good one for us and really important for seeding in the conference so gotta go get it.”