No. 10 ASU Upset By Fresno State, 25-14, To Open Final Weekend
Feb. 16, 2003
TEMPE, Ariz. - The final road trip of dual action for the No. 10 Arizona State wrestling team did not get off on the right foot Sunday as the Sun Devils ventured to Fresno State and fell, 25-14, to give the Bulldogs the upset and their ninth win in a row. ASU slipped to 11-7 overall and 4-2 in the Pac-10 after dropping their second dual in a row to FSU in as many years.
The dual opened at 125 with Sal Gonzales putting the home squad ahead 4-0 after scoring a 16-8 major decision over Adam Chavira (Sr., Parker, Ariz.). No. 10 Mike Simpson (So., Anaheim, Calif.), two weeks removed from his last bout, dropped an 11-8 decision to Joe Stewart at 133 to give the Bulldogs a 7-0 advantage in the team race. The 141 bout featured one of the biggest upsets of the day as Casey Olson halted No. 6 Dana Holland's (Sr., Glendale Heights, Ill.) 12-match winning streak with a stunning 12-10 decision.
No. 1 Eric Larkin (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.) was awarded a forfeit victory at 149 to put the Sun Devils back in striking distance heading into the tougher portion of the ASU lineup. The Bulldogs, however, scored upset decisions at 157 and 165 to build a commanding 16-6 lead. Both No. 15 Rocky Smart (Sr., Pleasant Grove, Utah) and No. 6 Nick Frost (Jr., Tucson, Ariz.) fell in their matches at 157 and 165, respectively.
No. 8 Curtis Owen (Sr., Coeur D'Alene, Idaho) halted the FSU momentum with his technical fall win at 174, 18-2 over Sean Sheets. Now trailing just 16-11, the Sun Devils' hopes for a victory took a sharp hit as Greg Gifford pinned ASU's 184-pounder Ron Renzi (Jr., Burke, Va.) in 1:59. Needing a win at 197 to stay in the contest, Ryan Bader (Fr., Verdi, Nev.) dropped a 9-2 decision to No. 20 Marcio Bothelo to clinch the dual for the hosts. In the final contest of the day, No. 3 Kellan Fluckiger (Sr., Preston, Idaho) scored a 3-1 decision over Clint Walbeck to give ASU three points and bring the final score to 25-14.
The Sun Devils conclude their regular season tonight at 7:30 p.m. PST when they take on Cal State Fullerton in Fullerton, Calif.