Stanford Wrestling Names Captains for 2005-06 Season

Oct. 18, 2005

Stanford, Calif. - Stanford fifth-year seniors Ray Blake, Ryan Hagen and Imad Kharbush and redshirt sophomore Tanner Gardner were selected by their teammates to be captains of the 2005-06 squad.

'I am very excited to have these men represent our program,' noted first-year head coach Kerry McCoy. 'We have a good mixture of veteran leadership and experience with fifth year seniors Ray, Ryan and Imad. And even though Tanner is redshirt sophomore, he has a tremendous amount of experience and will be the cornerstone of this program over the next few years. They all bring something different to the table and are all committed to lead Stanford to the top.'

Blake, a Chicago native, will compete at 165 pounds for his final campaign on The Farm. Last season, he picked up 10 wins during the collegiate season, including three wins at the Lone Star Duals, and in the spring Blake came one match away from All-America honors at the U.S. National Championships.

Hagen, who hails from Sidney, Mont., has accumulated more than 40 wins during his time on The Farm and finished his junior year with seven dual wins at 184 pounds.

Kharbush, a two-time NCAA Qualifier and the 2004 Pac-10 Champion from Livonia, Mich., is ranked in the top-6 in the preseason polls and will be looking for his first All-America honors in Oklahoma City in March.

Gardner is the Cardinal's second returning NCAA qualifier, after placing fifth at Pac-10's as a true freshman and earning a wildcard spot. Gardner redshirted last season but continued to compete at tournaments throughout the year, picking up fourth-place finishes at the University National Championships and at the 2005 FILA Junior National Championships last spring.

Stanford Wrestling begins the 2005-06 season on Tuesday, Nov. 1, as the Cardinal competes in wrestle-offs at 7 p.m. in Burnham Pavilion.

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