Arizona State Wrestling Signs Three for 2004-05 Campaign

Nov. 20, 2003

TEMPE, Ariz. - Thom Ortiz, head coach of the Arizona State wrestling team, announced Thursday the signing of Angel Cejudo (Maryvale, Ariz.), Alex Pavlenko (Tempe, Ariz.) and C.B. Dollaway (Mt. Gilead, Ohio) to join the Sun Devils for the 2004-05 season. According to Inter Mat Wrestling, Cejudo is the No. 4-ranked overall recruit in the nation and is No. 2 at 140 pounds while Pavlenko is No. 26 overall and No. 4 at 160 pounds. Dollaway is unranked as he is not a high school athlete and is currently attending Colby Community College in Colby, Kan.

'I know this is a solid group of student-athletes that will be able to contribute to our goals of winning a national title,' Ortiz said. 'Although it is not a big class in terms of the number of signees, it is big as it helps us fill some holes in our lineup down the road. I feel all three of these athletes will have successful careers with the program and will be a solid representation of Arizona State.'

Cejudo currently competes for Maryvale High School in Phoenix and is an undefeated, three-time Arizona Interscholastic Association champion. He has won titles at 103, 125 and 135 pounds and will compete at 140 pounds this year. A Junior National Greco-Roman and freestyle national champion, Cejudo is viewed as one of the top recruits in the nation and will redshirt his true freshman season before taking the mats for the Sun Devils at 141.

'Angel is very similar to (2003 NCAA Champion) Eric Larkin since both are Arizona products,' Ortiz said. 'He has the talent and ability to be just as good as Larkin was here. He will have to work hard like Eric did to attain that level of success, but he is the caliber of wrestler that could duplicate the success Larkin had.'

Pavlenko is a state champion from nearby Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe and is the second wrestler from the Padres' program to sign with the Sun Devils following current grappler Rick Renzi. Pavlenko holds a career 124-4 record in high school competition and also has recorded 33 wins via fall. He also has attained All-America status at the Junior National meet and has finished second and third in AIA state competitions.

'Alex will compete for us at 174 pounds and will be a four-year starter,' Ortiz said. 'He is another Arizona product and will come to us with a lot of goals in front of him. He has the talent and desire to become one of the better upper-weight wrestlers that Arizona State has seen and his strong work ethic will not only help him succeed on the mat, but assist the team in its efforts to win.'

The lone junior college transfer for the Sun Devils this year, Dollaway has won two titles in the last two years, claiming the NJCAA title at 184 pounds last year with CCC after finishing first in the Ohio state meet in 2002. While competing for Galion Northmor High School, Dollaway was a three-time placewinner including the state runner-up at 171 one year prior to his state championship.

'C.B. came out of Ohio and that bodes well for us as three of our program's 11 Hall of Fame inductees are from Ohio,' Ortiz said. 'He has the potential to step into the hunt for the national title at 184 next season as he was a national champion at Colby last year. He is a pinner and is always going for the pin. His style may be a little unorthodox, but he always competes hard and comes away with wins.'

The Sun Devils will open the season Nov. 23 in Columbia, Mo., at the Missouri Open. ASU's first dual of the season, as well as its first home competition, will be one week later against No. 4 Iowa (Nov. 30, 2 p.m.).

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