Oregon State hosts 2018 Pac-12 Wrestling Championships
The 56th-annual Pac-12 Wrestling Championships will be held on Sunday, February 25 at Gill Coliseum, hosted by Oregon State University. All five teams bring a wealth of tough competition to the table, led by ninth-ranked ARIZONA STATE. At least one Pac-12 wrestler is ranked in the top 20 for all but two weight classes, including the nation’s top wrestler at 174 in Arizona State’s Zahid Valencia and three in the Top 10 of the Heavyweight class - No. 7 Amarveer Dhesi, OREGON STATE; No. 8 Nathan Butler, STANFORD and No. 9 Tanner Hall, Arizona State. All three are a Pac-12 HWT champion - Butler in 2015, Dhesi in 2016, Hall in 2017. The first and second rounds, plus the consolation semifinals, will be streamed live on Pac-12.com. The championship rounds, which begin at 6 p.m. PT, will be televised live on Pac-12 Networks.
There will be five institutions competing for the Conference Championship: Arizona State, Cal Poly, CSU Bakersfield, Oregon State, and Stanford.
Tickets for the 2018 Pac-12 Wrestling Championships are available through the Oregon State Ticket Office at (800)-GO-BEAVS or online at Beavertickets.com.
The first and second rounds, plus the consolation semifinals, will be streamed live on Pac-12.com. The finals will be televised live on Pac-12 Networks with the broadcast beginning at 6 p.m. PT. Live results will be available after each match on the 2018 Pac-12 Wrestling Championships website: pac-12.com/wrestlingchamps
The ninth-ranked Sun Devils will look to defend their Pac-12 title. It would mark the first time since 2005-06 that ASU would post back-to-back Conference titles. Arizona State’s squad is anchored by redshirt sophomore Zahid Valencia, All-American and the nation’s No. 1 ranked wrestler at 174. Valencia is 25-0 this season and 63-1 in two seasons. Four Sun Devils have recorded 20 or more overall wins this season: Josh Maruca (149, 21-9), Josh Shields (157, 28-2), Anthony Valencia (165, 23-8), Zahid Valencia (174, 25-0). Earlier this season, the Sun Devils celebrated their 30th anniversary of the 1988 NCAA Championship team. The Sun Devils were and still remain the only team west of the Rockies to win a national championship in wrestling.
Cal Poly is seeking its first individual Pac-12 champion in five years. The Mustangs had at least one champion every year from 2001-13. Senior Colton Schilling (141) is the Pac-12’s top-ranked wrestler in his weight class and is 12-5 on the season. He’s posted five straight dual wins, four by fall, one by technical fall. Sophomore Matt Wilhelm (174) is 14-6 and has won his last six. Schilling and Spencer Empey (HWT) are the lone senior entries for the Mustangs.
Three Roadrunners enter the Pac-12 Championship with 20 wins under their belt this season - redshirt junior Sean Nickell (133) is 21-8, redshirt senior Coleman Hammond (157) is 26-12, and redshirt senior Matt Williams (197) is 27-7. Nickell, who captured the Pac-12 crown at 125, moved up a weight class this season and enters the Championship having won his last six bouts. Williams has won seven of his last eight and is currently ranked No. 14 by InterMat.
As host to the Pac-12 Championship, Oregon State looks for the home mat advantage. The Beavers had won five straight league titles until upended in last year’s championship. OSU paces the Pac-12 with 23 league crowns. Redshirt senior Amarveer Dhesi (HWT), currently ranked No. 7 in the country, has won nine straight and is 18-3 on the season. Redshirt junior Ronnie Bresser (125), nationally ranked No. 11 at 125 pounds, has won his last five and boasts a 19-4 record this season. Redshirt junior Corey Griego (195) is the Pac-12’s top-ranked wrestler in his weight class sitting at No. 11 by InterMat. He’s 19-5 this season, winning his last eight in a row.
Redshirt senior Nathan Butler (HWT), nationally-ranked at No. 8, is 22-6 this season and 101-35 for his career. Redshirt senior Keaton Subjeck (174), nationally-ranked at No. 9, has posted a 23-6 record this season with a 85-36 career mark. Redshirt junior Paul Fox (157), a 2017 All-American, has won 11 of his last 13 matches with his only two setbacks coming against Top 10 ranked foes.
2018 NCAA WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS
The NCAA Championships will take place March 15-17 at Quicken Loans Arena - Cleveland, Ohio. A total of 330 wrestlers will compete at the NCAA Championships. Of those 330, 290 will be determined via automatic qualification. The remaining 40 spots will be selected at-large by the NCAA Division I Wrestling Committee. Additional at-large selections will be announced on Wednesday, March 7 at 6 p.m. ET (NCAA.com). The Championship will be carried on either ESPNU or ESPN.
|Thursday, March 15||Session 1||12 noon/ESPNU|
|Thursday, March 15||Session 2||7 p.m./ESPNU|
|Friday, March 16||Session 3||11 a.m./ESPNU|
|Friday, March 16||Session 4||8 p.m./ESPN|
|Saturday, March 17||Session 5||11 a.m./ESPNU|
|Saturday, March 17||Session 6||8 p.m./ESPN|