Six ASU Wrestlers Advance to the Semifinals of the Pac-10 Championships

Feb. 27, 2005

Updated Brackets through Session 1 (pdf)
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SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - The first session of the 2005 Pac-10 Wrestling Championships got underway inside Mott Gym Sunday in San Luis Obispo, Calif., with members of the Arizona State University wrestling team posting an overall record of 7-4 on the day and placing six student-athletes in the semifinal round of the event. In the team race, host Cal Poly holds a slim lead over the Sun Devils with 53 points while ASU has accumulated 48. CS Bakersfield (40), Oregon State (39) and Oregon (37) round out the Top 5 while defending champion Boise State sits sixth with 36.5 points on the day.

Cain Velasquez (Jr., Yuma, Ariz.), the top-ranked heavyweight in the tournament, opened the day for the Sun Devils with a 14-4 major decision over Stanford's Shawn Ritzenthaler in the pigtail rounds. From there, Velasquez met Flynn Ficker of UC Davis and pushed his current winning streak to 16 bouts in a row as he defeated the Aggie big man with a 15-4 major decision.

In the championship quarterfinal round, including Velasquez's victory of Ficker, six Sun Devils won to earn a spot in the semifinals set for later tonight. Jeremy Mendoza (Jr., Temecula, Calif.), seeded fourth at 125, upended the defending conference champion and fifth-seeded Jesse Miramontes of CS Fullerton, 10-3, to advance to the semifinals where he will face No. 1-seed Vic Moreno of Cal Poly. At 133, unseeded John Espinoza (So., Phoenix, Ariz.) made his Pac-10 Championships debut, but was pinned by top-ranked Matt Sanchez of CS Bakersfield at 2:24. Another first-timer to the conference event, Curtis Ray (So., Mesa, Ariz.), also drew the top-seed in his weight class (141) where he faced Juan Mora (CSF) and fell in a 17-1 technical fall.

At 149 pounds, returning finalist and No. 2-seed Patrick Williams (Sr., Homestead, Fla.) dropped a tough 3-1 decision to Eddie Dahlen of Portland State to end his quest for a Pac-10 title. Each wrestler earned one point each on escapes to start the second and third periods and, although Williams was the aggressor the entire bout, Dahlen turned a Williams shot into a takedown of this own with four seconds remaining in the bout to earn the upset.

The Sun Devils rebounded from there though with No. 2 Brian Stith (So., Hampton, Va.) recording an 18-5 major decision over T.J. Ferguson (CPU) at 157. Stith, who went 0-2 in his first Pac-10 tournament a year ago, will meet No. 3 Tony Hook (OSU) later tonight. The ASU winning momentum continued at 165 as No. 6-seed Patrick Pitsch (Fr., Spanaway, Wash.) upset No. 3-seed Christian Arellano (CSB), 3-2, in a very physical match. Both men fought to the end with the difference being Pitsch's takedown on a bear hug early in the first period. ASU could not record its second upset of a No. 3 seed as Stanford's Imad Kharbush handed Rick Renzi (Fr., Flagstaff, Ariz.) a 6-2 loss.

ASU got back to its winning ways as the No. 2 seed at 184 C.B. Dollaway (Jr., Mt. Gilead, Ohio) pinned Jesse Taylor (CSF) in 3:41 before No. 2 seed of the 197 weight class Ryan Bader (Jr., Reno, Nev.) added an 18-4 major decision to the team's victory total for the first session.

The championships continue tonight with the championship semifinals as well as the consolation first round and consolation quarterfinals. The action is set to begin at 6 p.m. PST.

2005 Pac-10 Wrestling Championships
Mott Gym • San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Session 1 Results
ASU Only
(number proceeding wrestler is tournament seed)

125 • No. 4 Jeremy Mendoza (1-0)
Champ Quarters - #4 Mendoza dec. #5 Jesse Miramontes (CSF), 10-3
Champ Semifinal - #4 Mendoza vs. #1 Vic Moreno (CPU)

133 • John Espinoza (0-1)
Champ Quarters
- #1 Matt Sanchez (CSB) fall Espinoza, 2:24
Conso Second Round - Espinoza vs. Paul Tice (CSF) or Lucas Hambleton (PSU)

141 • Curtis Ray (0-1)
Champ Quarters
- #1 Juan Mora (CSF) tech fall Ray, 17-1
Conso Second Round - Ray vs. Jacob Scoles (BSU) or Skyler Woods (Oregon)

149 • No. 2 Patrick Williams (0-1)
Champ Quarters
- Eddie Dahlen (PSU) dec. #2 Williams, 3-1
Conso Second Round - #2 Williams vs. Josh Zupancic (SU)

157 • No. 2 Brian Stith (1-0)
Champ Quarters
- #2 Stith major T.J. Ferguson (CPU), 18-5
Champ Semifinal - #2 Stith vs. #3 Tony Hook (OSU)

165 • No. 6 Patrick Pitsch (1-0)
Champ Quarters
- #6 Pitsch dec. #3 Christian Arellano (CSB), 3-2
Champ Semifinal - #6 Pitsch vs. #2 Matt Ellis (OSU)

174 • No. 6 Rick Renzi (0-1)
Champ Quarters
- #3 Imad Kharbush (SU) dec. #6 Renzi, 6-2
Conso Second Round - #6 Renzi vs. Yuri Kalika (CPU) or David Garcia (CSB)

184 • No. 2 C.B. Dollaway (1-0)
Champ Quarters
- #2 Dollaway fall Jesse Taylor (CSF), 3:41
Champ Semifinal - #2 Dollaway vs. #3 Ryan Halsey (CPU)

197 • No. 2 Ryan Bader (1-0)
Champ Quarters
- #2 Bader major Reed Shelger (UCD), 18-4
Champ Semifinal - #2 Bader vs. #3 Ralph Garcia (CPU)

285 • No. 1 Cain Velasquez (2-0)
Champ Pigtail
- #1 Velasquez major Shawn Ritzenthaler (SU), 14-4
Champ Quarter - #1 Velasquez major Flynn Ficker (UCD), 15-4
Champ Semifinal - #1 Velasquez vs. #5 Cody Parker (UO)

TEAM SCORING
01. Cal Poly - 53.0
02. Arizona State - 48.0
03. CS Bakersfield - 40.0
04. Oregon State - 39.0
05. Oregon - 37.0
06. Boise State - 36.5
07. UC Davis - 31.0
08. CS Fullerton - 27.5
09. Stanford - 18.5
10. Portland State - 14.0

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