March 1, 2009
FULLERTON, Calif. – The 2009 Pac-10 Wrestling Championships went as expected for heavily favored Boise State as all six of its No. 1 seeds, and one No. 2 seed, advanced to the championship round of Monday’s finals. Oregon State and Cal State Bakersfield each had their lone No. 1 seed advance, while Arizona State’s two top-seeds also advanced to Monday night’s championship matches.
Day one of the Pac-10 Wrestling Championships proved to be good for No. 2 seeds as well. Eight second-seeds from six schools advanced from the semi-final round while one No. 3, and one No. 6 earned a spot in the championship round.
As a team Boise State racked up the points and bested their first day total from last year. The Broncos combined to score 138 points – up from 128 in 2008.
“I think we did what we were supposed to do,” Boise State head coach Greg Randall said. “Last year we weren’t supposed to win. This year we were coming in expecting to dominate.”
Cal State Bakersfield finished the day in second with 109 points. In third place Oregon State put 103.5 points on the board. Arizona State finished with 89.5, UC Davis 70.5, Cal Poly 67.5, Stanford 65, Cal State Fullerton 59.5, and Portland State 25.
At 125 things went as expected for No. 1 seed Arizona State’s Anthony Robles. Robles advanced to Monday’s final when he won by fall (3:23) over No. 4 seed Jake Gonzales from Oregon State. Cal State Bakersfield’s No. 3 seed Brandon Zoeteway earned a spot in the finals to face off against Robles when he upset Marcos Orozco, the No. 2 seed from UC Davis, with a 6-1 decision.
Top-seeded Andrew Hochstrasser from Boise State won a 9-4 decision over Cal Poly’s Filip Novachkov at 133 to punch his ticket to tomorrow night’s final. Hochstrasser will take on Oregon State’s unlikely finalist Kelly Kubec. The No. 6 seeded Kubec wrestled his way into the finals with a 5-3 decision over Cal State Fullerton’s second-seeded T.J. Dillashaw.
Arizona State’s other top-seed, Chris Drouin, got into the finals after edging out No. 4 seed Adin Duenas of Cal State Fullerton with a 4-2 decision.
“I just went and wrestled smart,” Drouin said. “Me and him [Duenas] have wrestled each other since we were sophomores in high school, he just doesn’t give up.”
No. 2 seed Elijha Nacita from Cal State Bakersfield worked his way through the bottom half of the bracket, and gets set to take on Drouin in Monday’s final after winning a 5-1 decision over Cory Fish, the third-seed from Boise State.
In the 149-pound bracket Oregon State’s lone No. 1 seed, Heinrich Barnes, won a 7-2 decision over No. 5 seed Tyler Parker from Stanford.
“I went out there and wrestled as hard as I can,” Barnes said. “I’m confident in winning the match tomorrow.”
Barnes will face Jason Chamberlain, the No. 2 seed from Boise State, in Monday’s final. Chamberlain got into the finals with a 4-0 win by decision over Cal State Fullerton’s sixth-seed Teddy Astorga.
No. 1 seed Adam Hall from Boise State made it to the finals at 157 when he won a 7-3 decision over Oregon State’s Jonathan Brascetta. Hall will meet No. 2 seed and defending champion Chase Pami from Cal Poly in Monday’s final. Pami advanced with a 12-4 major decision over third-seeded Lucas Espericueta from Stanford.
The next top-seed from Boise State to advance to Monday’s final was Tyler Sherfey at 165. Sherfey edged out Oregon State’s No. 4 seed Keegan Davis with a 6-3 decision in the semi-finals. Second-seeded Nick Amuchastegui of Stanford cruised to Monday’s final with a 12-4 major decision over sixth-seeded Kyle Deberry from Arizona State.
At 174, No. 1 seed and defending champion Nathan Lee kept things rolling for the Broncos with his 10-1 major decision victory over Cal State Fullerton’s Todd Noel. The No. 2 seed from Arizona State, Eric Starks, punched his ticket to Monday’s final with a 5-3 decision over Cal State Bakersfield’s Jason Points.
The Boise State Broncos landed another top-seed into Monday’s final when Kirk Smith squeaked out a 2-1 decision over Stanford’s Jake Johnson in the 184-pound bracket. In the bottom of the bracket, Cal State Bakersfield’s No. 2 seed, Riley Orozco, edged out Jonathan Clark from UC Davis with a 3-1 decision to earn his spot in Monday’s final.
No. 1 seed Brent Chriswell made it seven Broncos in Monday’s final when he won a fall by default over Cal State Fullerton’s John Drake at 197. Cal State Bakersfield’s No. 2 seeded Brandon Halsey made his way into the finals when he pinned Abraham Otrambo from UC Davis 1:47 into the first period.
At 285, Cal State Bakersfield’s Mitch Monteiro kept the top-seeds perfect in Sunday’s semi-finals when he beat Ricardo Alcala from UC Davis to earn a spot in Monday’s finals. Oregon State’s No. 2 seed Clayton Jack will face off against Monteiro in the finals after beating Cal State Fullerton’s Kurt Klimek with a 7-3 decision.
Monday night’s Pac-10 championship finals will feature eight matches between the top two-seeds, one No. 1 vs. No. 3, and one No. 1 vs. No. 6.
The number of qualifying spots for the NCAA Championships in St Louis on March 19 has changed this year. Only a certain number of positions are allotted to each conference based on a formula that takes into account a wrestler’s national reputation in his respective weight class. The Pac-10 had its number of spots reduced from 38 in 2008 to 20 in 2009.
“It is what it is and we have to live with it,” Randall said. “I expect the Pac-10 to step it up next year and get more spots.”
Day two of the Pac-10 Wrestling Championships gets under way at 3 p.m. with the consolation matches. The championship finals and third-place matches will begin at 7 p.m. at Titan Gym.