Jorgensen A Highlight For Beavers In 2000-01
June 1, 2001
Oregon State (12-7 overall, 8-2 Pacific-10) showed signs of breaking loose during the 2000-01 season, but inconsistency against some of the nation's top competition left the Beavers hungry for more at the end of the campaign. OSU placed third in the Pacific-10 Championships and tied for 18th at the NCAA Championships.
'At times, we wrestled extremely well,' OSU head coach Joe Wells said. 'At times, we didn't measure up.
'It was a great year for all the competition we had - the level of competition increased both within our room (during practice) and in the schedule we faced. We went against top-level competition, and our guys responded.'
The Beavers had 10 duals against teams ranked in the season's final top 25, and OSU won three of those. One of those victories, over Boise State, was Wells' 100th dual win at Oregon State.
OSU had just two seniors in its lineup, and the 2001 season tested the eight wrestlers who will return next winter.
'We're a team gaining in experience,' Wells said. 'But we're more in the `exerienced' range now with four seniors and a couple of juniors in the lineup next year.
'We've been getting more depth in our room, and part of getting better is increasing the depth in the room. Now we've got real dogfights for our No. 1 spots.'
Eric Jorgensen closed out his career by earning All-America honors, finishing fifth nationally at 157 pounds after winning the Pac-10 title.
'From start to finish, Eric wrestled very balanced,' Wells said. 'He had a heck of a schedule academically, with a number of labs he had to take as a Forestry major, and he had to modify his workouts. But I think he'd say part of his success came from doing the extra things, the special workouts - from having more individual time and focusing on what he needed to do to be successful.
'He probably wrestled his best of the season in the Pac-10 meet. He had a pin and a major decision in the finals against a returning national champion (Kirk White of Boise State). He was clicking on all cylinders for the fans in the state of Oregon to remember him.'
Other highlights that came to mind for Wells were home wins over nationally-ranked teams from Boise State and Oregon by identical 25-10 scores.
'Those were two meets where our guys went out and demonstrated that they wouldn't be denied,' Wells said. 'As a team, we totally dominated in those meets.'
Wells also recalled beating nationally-ranked Ohio State and a loss at nationally-ranked Nebraska.
'Those wound up the No. 7 and No. 8 teams in the country,' Wells said. 'We were right there with some of the top teams in the country, and we just need to learn from that, we need to be more consistent and draw from that experience.'
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS: Oregon State's Eric Jorgensen placed fifth at 157 pounds and the Beavers tied for 18th in the team race at the NCAA Wrestling Championships held March 15-17 at Iowa's Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Jorgensen, seeded fourth, was beaten by sixth-seeded Luke Becker of Minnesota 3-2 in the wrestleback semifinals but came back to top fifth-seeded Kirk White of Boise State 3-1 in overtime in the fifth-place final.
'We're very proud of him,' OSU head coach Joe Wells said of Jorgensen, a senior who earned All-America honors for the first time. 'He's improved every year. He ends up being named the outstanding wrestler in the conference (at the Pacific-10 Championships) and being an All-American.'
The win in the fifth-place final was Jorgensen's third straight over White after the 1999 national champ at 165 pounds had beaten him in December. Jorgensen also beat White in the Pac-10 final.
In overtime, Jorgensen forced the action and White countered and was able to get in on Jorgensen's leg, Jorgensen then countered, got around White and put him in a cradle. About 30 seconds into the extra period, the official awarded Jorgensen the takedown and, with it, fifth place.
The Beavers improved to a top-20 team finish after placing 36th in 2000. Of OSU's 7 wrestlers in the tournament, 6 scored a win before being eliminated.
'Realistically, if we had wrestled as well as we could have, we could have been in the top 10,' Wells said. 'But we didn't wrestle as well as we could have. If you look at our individual performances, every one of our guys here has beaten someone who was an All-American.
'You always think of the what-ifs, the woulda-coulda-shouldas. But what we did was tie for 18th and have one All-American, and he'll be around a while next year to help out. A couple of our guys are real close, and what we do between now and next fall will be significant. Now we hit the recruiting trail and get our schedule ready, and it looks like we're going to have a doozy of a schedule next year.'
PACIFIC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS: Oregon State 157-pounder Eric Jorgensen and 174-pounder Nathan Coy won individual titles and the Beavers placed third in the team race as the Pacific-10 Wrestling Championships were held Feb. 25-26 at Oregon's McArthur Court. OSU 141-pounder Shane Cunanan and heavyweight Jason Cooley both placed second.
The Beavers advanced 7 wrestlers to the NCAA Championships, joining the finalists were 133-pounder Ben Richards, who placed third, and 125-pounder Nathan Navarro and 165-pounder Jed Pennell, both of whom placed fifth. The top 4 placers at each weight earned automatic berths, but Navarro and Pennell earned 2 of the Pacific-10's 3 wild-card entries to the national meet, the wild cards are selected by conference coaches from among the fifth-place finishers.
Jorgensen was named the meet's Outstanding Wrestler, earning 1 pin and then winning the title. Ranked sixth nationally, Jorgensen took the championship with a 10-2 major decision over top-seeded and nationally third-ranked Kirk White of Boise State.
Jorgensen was the first Beaver to earn the Pac-10 meet's Outstanding Wrestler award since 2-time national champion Les Gutches won it in 1995 and 1996. The 2 conference champions were the most for OSU since 1998.
Arizona State won the Pacific-10 championship with 123.5 points, followed by Boise State with 110.5 and Oregon State with 109.5. It was the second straight third-place finish for the Beavers, whose goal was the team title, a disappointing morning session on the second day cost OSU a chance to win the tournament.
'It's good to have 2 champions and have 4 in the finals,' OSU head coach Joe Wells said. 'But that doesn't cut it. We planned to be champion and we didn't do it, so we fell short of our goal. Our goal was to have 10 qualify for nationals and we had 7, that's not bad, but that wasn't our goal.'
Jorgensen and Coy won titles, including Coy's pin of Cal Poly's Steve Strange in 4:54 in the final, but Wells called Cunanan 'the warrior of the evening.' The sophomore went against third-ranked Eric Larkin of Arizona State and lost 12-8, but scored 3 takedowns against the only collegian who is a member of the U.S. National Team.
'He set the tone for how we wrestled tonight,' Wells said of Cunanan's effort at 141 pounds. 'He did what we have to have people do to win this tournament - we need people to step up and not be afraid of who they're wrestling, and wrestle to win. He came up a little short tonight, but he won't do that often when he wrestles that way.
'Then Jorgy went out and followed in his footsteps, and Nathan did him one better with the pin.'
Jorgensen and White - a national champion in 1999 at 165 pounds - had split a pair of regular-season meetings at 157 pounds, with White winning 2-1 in overtime in December and Jorgensen winning 6-1 in January.
'I knew I had my work cut out for me after the first time we wrestled,' Jorgensen said. 'I knew it was up to me, how hard I wanted to work and how hard I wanted to train.'
It took Coy a while to get going in the 174-pound final. After a scoreless first period, Strange began the second with an escape and a quick takedown.
But, once Coy found himself trailing, he went right to work. He scored an escape with 44 seconds to go in the second period and a takedown just 4 seconds later, getting Strange into a cradle and working it into a pin with 6 seconds remaining.
'When somebody takes me down, it gets me going,' Coy said. 'I was trying for the reversal and he tried to clear me for the escape, but I caught him with his head down and got him in the cradle.'
Cooley, seeded third, dropped an 8-5 decision to top-seeded Kellan Fluckiger of Arizona State. After a scoreless first period, Cooley started the second period in the down position and gave up a 3-point near fall, he managed a reversal to get within 3-2. Fluckiger, though, scored an escape and a takedown before the end of the second period for a 6-2 lead and Cooley was never closer than 3 points the rest of the way.
On the morning of Feb. 26, the Beavers had 5 wrestlers in the consolation semifinals, where a win meant an automatic trip to the NCAA meet. Richards was the only one to win, he guaranteed his fourth trip to the NCAA Championships by beating Nate Ybarra of Cal Poly 15-3. Richards picked up his fourth consecutive third-place finish at the conference tourney by beating Charlie Griggs of Boise State 6-3.
OREGON STATE HEAD COACH JOE WELLS: Joe Wells hit the century mark is in his ninth season as Oregon State's head coach. The Beavers' 25-10 win over then-No. 11 Boise State on Jan. 20 was Wells' 100th dual meet win at OSU. Since taking over the Beaver program prior to the 1992-93 season, Wells is 103-60-1 for a winning percentage of .631.
The Beavers were Pacific-10 Conference champions under Wells in 1994 and he has twice been named the conference's Coach of the Year. OSU has finished in the top 10 at the NCAA Championships 4 times in Wells' tenure, placing second in 1995, fourth in 1994, eighth in 1996 and tying for ninth in 1998.
Under Wells, OSU has had 2 national champions, 15 All-Americans and 16 conference champions.
Wells was named the ASICS Oregon Wrestling Classic's Man of the Year for 1998 for his contributions to wrestling in the state.
Wells, who has coached numerous World Teams for the United States, is a 1972 Iowa graduate. He was a 2-time placer at the Big Ten meet and the 1976 U.S. Wrestling Federation freestyle champ. He spent 17 seasons as an assistant coach at Iowa and Michigan before coming to Oregon State.
OREGON STATE SECOND IN ALL-TIME DUAL MEET WINS: OSU rates as one of the best dual meet teams in collegiate wrestling history. The Beavers were second in all-time dual meet wins among Division I schools and fourth in all-time dual meet winning percentage going into the 2000-01 season. OSU currently has an all-time dual meet record of 837-253-24 and a .762 winning percentage.
OREGON STATE'S DUAL MEET SCHEDULE: OSU faced one of the nation's toughest dual meet schedules. The Beavers met 9 teams ranked in the final National Wrestling Coaches Association/The Mat poll: No. 2 Oklahoma State, No. 4 Iowa, No. 6 Oklahoma, No. 8 Ohio State, No. 9 Nebraska, No. 11 Arizona State, No. 15 Fresno State, No. 16 Boise State and No. 21 Oregon (twice).
JORGENSEN NAMED BEST AT PAC-10 MEET: Oregon State's Eric Jorgensen was named the Outstanding Wrestler of the tournament at the Pacific-10 Championships, which were held Feb. 25-26 at Oregon. Jorgensen went 3-0, earning a pin and then winning the championship with a 10-2 major decision over top-seeded and nationally third-ranked Kirk White of Boise State. Jorgensen was the first Beaver to earn the Outstanding Wrestler award since two-time national champion Les Gutches won it in 1995 and 1996.
PENNELL PAC-10'S TOP NEWCOMER: Oregon State's Jed Pennell was the Pacific-10 Wrestling Newcomer of the Year. Pennell, a freshman 165-pounder, placed fifth at the Pacific-10 Championships and qualified for the NCAA Championships. Pennell went 17-12 with 3 pins in his first season of varsity competition for the Beavers, and he scored team bonus points for a pin, technical fall, major decision or forfeit in 28 percent of his matches. Among Pennell's wins was an upset of fourth-ranked Steve Blackford of Arizona State, and 4 of his losses were in overtime.
PAC-10 ALL-ACADEMIC PICKS: Oregon State's Paul Barron and Jed Pennell were named to the Pacific-10 All-Academic wrestling team. OSU's Shane Cunanan and Isaac Weber were named to the second team and the Beavers' Casey Horn and John Winters earned honorable mention. To be eligible for Pacific-10 all-academic teams, a student-athlete must have a minimum 3.0 overall grade point average and be a starter or significant substitute.
Barron, a senior, had a 3.61 GPA and is majoring in Forest Engineering and Civil Engineering. Pennell, a redshirt freshman, had a 3.82 GPA and is majoring in Exercise and Sport Science. Cunanan, a sophomore, has a 3.14 GPA and is majoring in Exercise and Sport Science. Weber, a junior, has a 3.29 GPA and is majoring in Political Science. Horn, a sophomore, has a 3.04 GPA and is majoring in Liberal Studies. Winters, a redshirt freshman, has a 3.15 GPA and is majoring in Business.
OREGON STATE TEAM AWARDS: Oregon State hands out 4 team awards at the end of each season. This year, senior 157-pounder Eric Jorgensen was named Most Outstanding Wrestler, sophomore 197-pounder Jason Lovell was named winner of the Chad Flack Memorial Award as Most Improved Wrestler, and freshman 165-pounder Jed Pennell was named Most Promising Newcomer and also earned the Academic Excellence award.
BEAVERS WITH TEAM BONUS POINTS: Oregon State tracks how well wrestlers earn team bonus points - that is, extra points for wins by major decision, technical fall, pin, injury default or forfeit. Here are the numbers for the Beaver regulars for the season:
Eric Jorgensen, sr. (157) 48% (21 of 44)Nathan Coy, jr. (174) 36% (16 of 44)Ben Richards, sr. (133) 34% (12 of 35)Shane Cunanan, so. (141) 29% (10 of 35)Jason Cooley, jr. (HWT) 28% (9 of 32)Jed Pennell, fr. (165) 28% (8 of 29)Nathan Navarro, jr. (125) 22% (7 of 32)Casey Horn, so. (141/149) 18% (4 of 22)Jason Lovell, so. (197) 17% (5 of 29)Isaac Weber, jr. (184) 15% (4 of 27)
OREGON STATE IN GILL COLISEUM: Oregon State has one of the finest homes in college wrestling, 10,400-seat Gill Coliseum. Having just completed their 45th season in Gill Coliseum, the Beavers have a home dual meet record of 346-62-6 in the arena for a winning percentage of .843. This season, OSU went 7-2 at home.
In 2001, the Beavers attracted an average of 1,131 fans per home date. That includes a crowd of 2,862 for Iowa's first-ever visit to OSU on Jan. 6, that was Oregon State's largest home crowd in over a decade.
OSU moved its home wrestling meets into Gill Coliseum in 1956-57, when Dale Thomas became head coach. Since then, the arena has hosted conference championship meets 13 times and it was the site of the NCAA Championships in 1961 and 1980.
MILESTONES VS. BOISE STATE: When Oregon State beat Boise State 25-10 on Jan. 20 at Gill Coliseum, it marked milestones for OSU head coach Joe Wells and senior 157-pounder Eric Jorgensen. Both earned the 100th win of their Oregon State careers when the Beavers knocked off the then-11th-ranked Broncos.
For Wells, it was his 100th dual meet victory since taking over the OSU program prior to the 1992-93 season. Jorgensen earned the 100th match win of his Beaver career by upsetting then-third-ranked Kirk White 5-1, White was the NCAA champion at 165 pounds in 2000.
Boise State was the highest-ranked team beaten by the Beavers since OSU topped 10th-ranked Arizona State in 1999.
CAL-DAVIS, CAL-STATE-FULLERTON SHUTOUTS: Oregon State blanked a pair of dual meet opponents this season, shutting out Cal-Davis and Cal State-Fullerton. When the Beavers beat Cal-Davis 43-(-2) on Dec. 16 in Gill Coliseum, it was the first time OSU had won all 10 matches in a dual meet since a 44-0 home win over Lehigh early in the 1995-96 season. Cal-Davis was penalized 2 team points for unsportsmanlike conduct, it was the first time in OSU's 1,102 duals since 1909 that the Beavers ever finished a meet with their opponent in negative points. OSU's victory over Cal-Davis was the Beavers' first shutout of a Pac-10 opponent since a 51-0 home win over Oregon in 1984. It was the most points OSU had scored in a meet since the 44-0 shutout of Lehigh in 1996 and it was the Beavers' widest margin of victory since topping Pacific 46-0 in 1993.
Then, on Feb. 10 at Cal State-Fullerton, the Beavers matched the margin of victory from that Cal-Davis meet and managed more points in a 45-0 victory. It was the first time the Beavers had posted 2 shutouts in a season since 1984, when they blanked Oregon 47-0 in Eugene and 51-0 in Corvallis.
BEAVER WRESTLING HOMECOMING: Oregon State's annual Beaver Wrestling Homecoming was held Feb. 14, and 27 former Oregon State wrestlers were among a crowd of 1,764 that saw 15th-ranked OSU beat 18th-ranked Oregon 25-10. Among them, the alums on hand earned 33 individual conference championships, 22 All-America finishes and 6 individual national titles.
BEAVERS ON TELEVISION: OSU had a pair of dual meets televised by Fox Sports Net on a tape-delayed basis this winter. The Beavers' dual meet at Oregon on Dec. 13 and the home dual against Iowa on Jan. 6 were televised. The finals of the Pacific-10 Championships were also shown on Fox Sports Net via tape delay.
OREGON STATE IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS: Here's where the Beavers have ranked nationally this season:
TEAMAm.Wr.News InterMatPre NR Pre 19thNatl.Wr.CoachesAssoc.Dec. 6 14thDec. 13 13thDec.20 14thJan. 3 14thJan. 10 15thJan. 17 14thJan. 24 12thJan. 31 13thFeb. 7 15thFeb. 14 17thFeb. 21 17thFinal 17thNATHAN NAVARRO, 125Am.Wr.News InterMatPre 8th Pre 9thNov. 5 8th Nov. 15 9thNov. 22 10th Nov. 22 8th Nov. 29 7thDec. 6 15th Dec. 6 17thDec. 13 18th Dec. 13 17thDec. 20 17th Dec. 20 17thJan. 3 8th Jan. 3 15thJan. 10 10th Jan. 10 13thJan. 17 10th Jan. 17 11thJan. 24 10th Jan. 24 10thJan. 31 9th Jan. 31 8thFeb. 7 8th Feb. 7 8thFeb. 14 11th Feb. 14 8thFeb. 21 7th Feb. 21 9thFeb. 28 NR Feb. 28 14thFinal NR Final 12thBEN RICHARDS, 133Am.Wr.News InterMatPre 18th Pre NRNov. 5 18th Nov. 15 NRNov. 22 18th Nov. 22 19th Nov. 29 18thDec. 6 NR Dec. 6 NRDec. 13 NR Dec. 13 19thDec. 20 20th Dec. 20 19thJan. 3 20th Jan. 3 NRJan. 10 NR Jan. 10 NRJan. 17 NR Jan. 17 20thJan. 24 NR Jan. 24 17thJan. 31 NR Jan. 31 18thFeb. 7 NR Feb. 7 18thFeb. 14 NR Feb. 14 17thFeb. 21 NR Feb. 21 15thFeb. 28 NR Feb. 28 16thFinal NR Final 15thSHANE CUNANAN, 141Am.Wr.News InterMatPre NR Pre NRNov. 5 NR Nov. 15 NRNov. 22 NR Nov. 22 NR Nov. 29 NRDec. 6 18th Dec. 6 20thDec. 13 18th Dec. 13 16thDec. 20 17th Dec. 20 16thJan. 3 19th Jan. 3 NRJan. 10 20th Jan. 10 NRJan. 17 NR Jan. 17 NRJan. 24 20th Jan. 24 NRJan. 31 NR Jan. 31 NRFeb. 7 NR Feb. 7 NRFeb. 14 NR Feb. 14 NRFeb. 21 NR Feb. 21 NRFeb. 28 NR Feb. 21 NRFinal NR Final NRERIC JORGENSEN, 157Am.Wr.News InterMatPre 12th Pre 9thNov. 5 12th Nov. 15 9thNov. 22 10th Nov. 22 9th Nov. 29 9thDec. 6 5th Dec. 6 7thDec. 13 5th Dec. 13 7thDec. 20 5th Dec. 20 7thJan. 3 7th Jan. 3 9thJan. 10 7th Jan. 10 9thJan. 17 7th Jan. 17 8thJan. 24 6th Jan. 24 7thJan. 31 6th Jan. 31 7thFeb. 7 6th Feb. 7 7thFeb. 14 6th Feb. 14 5thFeb. 21 6th Feb. 21 5thFeb. 28 4th Feb. 28 4thFinal 4th Final 4thNATHAN COY, 174Am.Wr.News InterMatPre 13th Pre 14thNov. 5 13th Nov. 15 13thNov. 22 15th Nov. 22 19th Nov. 29 19thDec. 6 10th Dec. 6 15thDec. 13 9th Dec. 13 12thDec. 20 9th Dec. 20 12thJan. 3 6th Jan. 3 9thJan. 10 6th Jan. 10 8thJan. 17 6th Jan. 17 8thJan. 24 6th Jan. 24 9thJan. 31 8th Jan. 31 10thFeb. 7 7th Feb. 7 9thFeb. 14 7th Feb. 14 8thFeb. 21 7th Feb. 21 8thFeb. 28 7th Feb. 28 8thFinal 7th Final 8thISAAC WEBER, 184Am.Wr.News InterMatPre NR Pre NRNov. 5 NR Nov. 15 NRNov. 22 17th Nov. 22 18th Nov. 29 18thDec. 6 17th Dec. 6 16thDec. 13 19th Dec. 13 16thDec. 20 19th Dec. 20 17thJan. 3 20th Jan. 3 16thJan. 10 19th Jan. 10 17thJan. 17 NR Jan. 17 NRJan. 24 NR Jan. 24 NRJan. 31 NR Jan. 31 NRFeb. 7 NR Feb. 7 NRFeb. 14 NR Feb. 14 NRFeb. 21 NR Feb. 21 NRFeb. 28 NR Feb. 28 NRFinal NR Final NRJASON COOLEY, HWTAm.Wr.News InterMatPre 8th Pre 9thNov. 5 7th Nov. 15 11thNov. 22 11th Nov. 22 12th Nov. 29 10thDec. 6 5th Dec. 6 2ndDec. 13 3rd Dec. 13 2ndDec. 20 3rd Dec. 20 7thJan. 3 5th Jan. 3 8thJan. 10 6th Jan. 10 7thJan. 17 6th Jan. 17 8thJan. 24 7th Jan. 24 7thJan. 31 11th Jan. 31 8thFeb. 7 9th Feb. 7 8thFeb. 14 10th Feb. 14 9thFeb. 21 10th Feb. 21 8thFeb. 28 10th Feb. 28 9thFinal 11th Final 9th