Oregon Finishes in Fifth Place at Pac-10 Championships

March 3, 2003

BOISE, Idaho - The Oregon wrestling team finished in fifth place at the Pac-10 Championships, which concluded Monday in Boise, Idaho. Sophomore Shane Webster, ranked No. 11 in the country, led the Ducks by placing second at 174.

Senior Casey Hunt, who took third place at 141, and junior Jason Harless, who took fifth place at 133, will join Webster at the NCAA Championships later this month. Harless qualified for nationals by virtue of one of the two wildcards awarded at the tournament.

Arizona State took the Pac-10 title with 134.0 points, followed closely by defending champion and tournament host Boise State with 127.0. Oregon State (93.5), Cal Poly (73.5) and Oregon (68.0) rounded out the top five.

'It was a disappointing tournament as far as where the team finished,' head coach Chuck Kearney said. 'We have a group of guys that worked so hard, things just didn't go our way.'

In Webster's championship match, Owen used a late third-period takedown to take control and held on for a 3-1 victory. Webster improved on his third-place Pac-10 finish from a year ago and will enter the NCAA Championships with a 28-5 record, including winning eight of his last nine matches.

'Shane's got national tournament goals and he obviously wanted to win the Pac-10 title,' Kearney said. 'He wants to win the national championship and be an All-American. He's got two and a half weeks before the tournament and this should be good experience for him.'

Hunt secured the third-place finish with a 13-10 win against Juan Mora of Cal State Fullerton. Hunt nearly scored a pin in the second period, but held on for the decision. In the consolation semifinals, Hunt defeated Oregon State's Mike Unger for the third time this season, this time by the score of 5-3.

Harless (133) won his fifth-place match, but had to hold on in the second overtime against Brad Metzler of Stanford. The match was tied, 1-1, after regulation and the first overtime period. Metzler won the coin flip, chose down, and Harless rode him out for 30 seconds to win the match with the tiebreaker.

Luke Larwin, despite finishing fourth at 165, did not qualify for the national tournament. The Pac-10 Championships utilized a 'true fourth-place' rule, meaning the fifth-place finisher had the right to challenge the fourth-place finisher under one of two conditions: the two wrestlers had not previously met in the tournament, or the fifth-place wrestler had already defeated the fourth-place wrestler in the tournament.

Nathan Ploehn of Boise State finished in fifth, and challenged Larwin for a berth into the NCAA Championships. The match was tied, 1-1, following regulation and a one-minute overtime session. Ploehn won the toss and elected the down position, needing only an escape in 30 seconds to claim victory. Larwin was called for an illegal hand lock, giving Ploehn the 2-1 win.

Sophomore Martin Mitchell (125) scored a pin at 1:01 of the fifth-place match against Nathan Peterson of Stanford. Peterson defeated Mitchell earlier in the year in overtime, but Mitchell used a reversal and quickly executed the pin to take the win.

Junior Branson Phillips also scored a fifth-place finish at 157, defeating No. 18 Matt Gentry of Stanford in his final match of the day, 11-4. Phillips controlled the match throughout, using a three-point near fall in the second period to put the match out of reach.

The NCAA Championships will take place March 20-22 in Kansas City, Mo.

1. Arizona State 134.02. Boise State 127.03. Oregon State 93.54. Cal Poly 73.55. Oregon 68.06. Cal State Bakersfield 66.57. UC Davis 46.58. Cal State Fullerton 44.59. Stanford 37.510. Portland State 31.5

Martin Mitchell (UO) def. No. 11 Vic Moreno (CP), 9-7 s.v.
No. 12 Efren Ceballos (CSUB) def. Martin Mitchell (UO), 9-6
Michael Delaney (OSU) def. Martin Mitchell (UO), 5-3
Martin Mitchell (UO) def. Nathan Peterson (STAN), fall 1:03 (5th)

Jason Harless (UO) def. David Rodriguez, major 11-3
Mike Simpson (ASU) def. Jason Harless (UO), 4-0
Nate Ybarra (CP) def. Jason Harless (UO), 8-3
Jason Harless (UO) def. Brad Metzler (STAN), 1-1 t.b. (5th)

Casey Hunt (UO) def. Eddie Dahlen (PSU), 9-5
No. 10 Gabe Vigil (BSU) def. Casey Hunt (UO), 3-1
Casey Hunt (UO) def. Mike Unger (OSU), 5-3
Casey Hunt (UO) def. Juan Mora (CSF), 13-10 (3rd)

Nick Davis (UCD) def. Tony Overstake (UO), 5-3
Tony Hook (OSU) def. Tony Overstake (UO), fall 4:58

Rocky Smart (ASU) def. Branson Phillips (UO), 4-1
Branson Phillips (UO) def. Jeremy Larson (OSU), major 12-3
Branson Phillips (UO) def. Dustin Vance (CSF), 6-1
Ben Cherrington (BSU) def. Branson Phillips (UO), 9-3
Branson Phillips (UO) def. No. 18 Matt Gentry (STAN), 11-4 (5th)

Matt Ellis (OSU) def. Luke Larwin (UO), 3-2
Luke Larwin (UO) def. Keith Kroeger (CP), fall 3:30
Luke Larwin (UO) def. Michael Font (UCD), 5-3
Matt Ellis (OSU) def. Luke Larwin (UO), 3-1 (4th)
Nathan Ploehn (BSU) def. Luke Larwin (UO), 2-1 t.b.

No. 11 Shane Webster (UO) def. Harold Penson (STAN), major 22-8
No. 11 Shane Webster (UO) def. Jake Huffman (OSU), major 10-2
No. 10 Curtis Owen (ASU) def. No. 11 Shane Webster (UO), 3-1 (2nd)

Jed Pennell (OSU) def. Tony Rolen (UO), major 14-2
Tony D'Amico (BSU) def. Tony Rolen (UO), 3-1

David Schenk (CP) def. Elias Soto (UO), 4-2
Landon Seefeldt (CSF) def. Elias Soto (UO), 3-2

Neil Phillips (UO) def. Bryan Webster (CSF), fall 3:25
Dan Howe (CP) def. Neil Phillips (UO), 4-0
Jason Paul (UCD) def. Neil Phillips (UO), 2-0

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