No. 7 Wrestling Finishes Third at Reno Tournament of Champions

Dec. 19, 2002

TEMPE, Ariz. - No. 4 Dana Holland (Sr., Glendale Heights, Ill./Iowa Central), at 141, and No. 5 Kellan Fluckiger (Sr., Preston, Idaho/Preston), heavyweight, won their respective weight classes and No. 16 Nick Frost (Jr., Tucson, Ariz./Salpointe Catholic) took runner-up honors at 165 to help the No. 7 Arizona State wrestling team finish third at the 2002 Reno Tournament of Champions Thursday in Reno, Nev. No.1 Oklahoma State took the team title with 139 points while Edinboro and ASU rounded out the Top 3 with 89.5 and 87.5 points, respectively. In all, 12 Sun Devils saw action in the event with four of them placing in the Top 6, including a third-place finish by Ryan Bader (Fr., Verdi, Nev./Mcqueen) at 197.

Holland continued his dominance in Nevada this month by winning his second 141 title in December. After taking the 2002 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational tournament Dec. 6-7, Holland rolled through five matches to earn the championship. The closest match he had was his 6-1 decision over Oregon's Casey Hunt in the final. In all, Holland won three matches by fall and another by an 11-3 major decision. Fluckiger, who fell one win shy of winning the Las Vegas Invitational, went 4-0 on the day to capture the heavyweight crown. After a win by fall and two shutout decisions, Fluckiger defeated No. 10 Boe Rushton of Boise State, 3-2 in the tiebreaker.

Joining Holland and Fluckiger in the finals was Frost. He won four matches in a row, including a technical fall, a major decision and two decisions, before suffering a 7-0 defeat to No. 14 Nick Nemeth of Kent State. Frost punched his ticket to the finals with an 8-3 upset of No. 8 Matt King of Edinboro in the finals.

Also placing for the Sun Devils was Bader at 197. Bader's lone loss came at the hands of the top-seeded and third-ranked Muhammed Lawal of Oklahoma State, a 22-9 major decision setback. In Bader's six wins, two were by decision and two by fall, including pins of the fourth and fifth seeds in the event. His second pin of the tournament, which sent him to the third-place bout, was over No. 15 in the nation David Schenk of Cal Poly.

In all, the team combined to go 32-15 in the tournament to take third place. Also having a strong showing but falling short of placing in tournament were Patrick Williams (So., Homestead, Fla./Neosho CC) and No. 18 Mike Simpson (So., Anaheim, Calif./Brethren Christian), at 149 and 133, respectively. Each advanced to the consolation quarterfinals before dropping their second match of the day to fall from the bracket. Ron Renzi (Jr., Burke, Va./Braddock) at 184 also had a strong showing, going 3-2 and falling one match shy of placing.

Following the holiday break, the Sun Devils will return to dual competition with Embry-Riddle and Pima at Sunnyside High School in Tucson, Dec. 28 starting at 4 p.m.

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