Wrestling Set To Rumble With Portland State, Oregon State This Weekend
Jan. 24, 2006
Dual No. 6 * Northern Colorado at Portland State
Friday, Jan. 27 * 8 p.m. MT
Portland, Ore. * Peter W. Stott Center (1,500)
Dual No. 7 * Northern Colorado at Oregon State
Saturday, Jan. 28 * 8 p.m. MT
Corvallis, Ore. * Gill Coliseum (10,400)
The Bears will travel to Portland, Ore., to grapple with the Portland State Vikings at 8 p.m. on Friday. Northern Colorado will then head south to Corvallis for a showdown with Oregon State at 8 p.m. on Saturday.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENT
Portland State has struggled this season, posting a 1-12 record. Its lone win came over Division III Pacific (Ore.) on Nov. 12. Since then, the Vikings have lost 12 straight duals. In its losses this season, Portland State has lost by an average score of 38-11.
Oregon State is 7-2-1 this season, with losses to No. 5 Nebraska and Oregon. The Beavers have a trio of ranked wrestlers; 157-pounder Tony Hook (No. 17), 174-pounder Jeremy Larson (No. 18) and heavyweight Ty Watterson (No. 17).
Northern Colorado leads the all-time series with Portland State 3-0. The teams first met on the mat in 1994, when both teams were in Division II. The Bears pulled off a 23-19 victory.
In the last two matches, the ship capsized for the Vikings. The Bears dominated both matches in 2003-04 and 2004-05, winning 28-18 and 38-7. In 2003, Nathan Gerrard helped spark the win with a pin, while Reece Hopkin scored a major decision. In the 2005 dual, the only Bear on this season's roster that competed was Shawn Hart, who picked up a technical fall.
Oregon State has not been as kind to the Bears. The Beavers lead the all-time series 3-0, with OSU winning last season's dual 27-12 in Greeley.
THE BEAR FACTS
The Bears are riding a caravan of momentum right now, as they are off to their best start since reclassifying to Division I at 3-2. Northern Colorado's most recent triumph came in a non-dual competition at the Colorado Collegiates tournament.
The Bears posted 86.5 points to win the title for the sixth time in program history and first crown since 2003. Head coach Jack Maughan was named Coach of the Year at the event for the fourth time in his career.
HOPKIN MOVES UP THREE SPOTS IN LATEST WRESTLING POLL
University of Northern Colorado sophomore wrestler Reece Hopkin moved up three spots to No. 16 at 197 pounds in the latest Intermat/NWCA/NWMA Division I Poll released on Tuesday. Hopkin improved his record to 18-4 this season after going 3-0 at the Colorado Collegiates on Saturday at Adams State. He captured the 197 pound title at the event, marking the second time he has done so and the fifth two-time Northern Colorado Colorado Collegiates champion. Hopkin is currently on a six-match winning streak and has won 11 of his last 13. He defeated No. 20 Nathan Moore of Purdue 6-3 earlier this year at the Lone Star Duals in Dallas. Northern Colorado is in its third year of a reclassification to Division I and will be eligible for the postseason next year. Hopkin is the first Bears wrestler to be ranked in Division I.
WRESTLERS TAKE FIRST AT 21ST ANNUAL COLORADO COLLEGIATES
The University of Northern Colorado wrestling team captured the Colorado Collegiates title and head coach Jack Maughan was named Coach of the Year on Jan. 21 at Plachy Hall in Alamosa, Colo. The Bears had seven place winners en route to winning their sixth all-time championship and first crown since 2003. Maughan was named Coach of the Year at the event for the fourth time in his career. Northern Colorado scored 86.5 points and finished ahead of in-state Division I rival Air Force, who came in second with 82.5 points. No. 19 sophomore Reece Hopkin finished 3-0 and captured the 197 pound title. Hopkin (18-4 overall) won his second Colorado Collegiates individual championship, becoming just the fifth Northern Colorado wrestler to win an individual crown twice. Sophomore Richard Lohr had his strongest showing of the year, as he went 3-1 and finished second at 141 pounds. Lohr improved his season record to 11-13. Sophomore Shawn Hart won his last two matches after starting out 1-1 and grabbed third place honors at 174 pounds. Hart finished 3-1 and improved his season record to 17-3. Sophomore Beau Hessler finished 1-1 in the 125 pound group and came out with a second place finish. Freshman heavyweight Justin Tuell came out with a fourth place finish after going 2-2. Tuell also recorded the fastest pin at the tournament with a 23 second fall over Colorado Mines' Sean Studer. Redshirt sophomore Kyle LeValley rebounded to finish 3-1 en route to fourth place in the 149 category after starting the day 1-1. LeValley improved his season record to 11-10. Senior Nathan Gerrard took fourth place at 157 pounds after going 3-2. Gerrard is now 13-11 this season.
HOPKIN MOVES UP TO 19TH IN LATEST USA Today/NWCA/INTERMAT 197 POUND POLL
Northern Colorado redshirt sophomore wrestler Reece Hopkin moved up a spot to No. 19 in the latest USA Today/NWCA/Intermat wrestling 197 pound rankings. Hopkin, who is 15-4 overall this season and 5-0 in duals, is the first wrestler to attain a ranking since the Bears reclassified to Division I in 2003-04. Hopkin is 36-14 in two seasons with the Bears.
NORTHERN COLORADO STAGES BIG COMEBACK TO BEAT WOLVERINES, 23-21
The University of Northern Colorado wrestling team came back from an 18-9 deficit to defeat the Utah Valley State Wolverines, 23-21, on Monday in Orem, Utah. Both teams split the 10 matches, but a technical fall gave Northern Colorado the points it needed to take the win. The score was tied at six after the opening matches in the heavyweight and 125 pound categories were forfeited by each team. UVSC's nationally-ranked Erkin Tadzhimetov gave the Wolverines a 12-6 lead after he pinned junior Adam Garcia in the 133 pound match. In the 141 pound match, Richard Lohr could not hold an early lead to the Wolverines' Daniel Polkowske to lose the decision 7-6. Polkowske's win extended Utah Valley's lead to 15-6 with six matches to go. But Northern Colorado clawed back to cut the lead to 15-9 after Kyle LeValley got a crucial 1-0 decision over UVSC's Justin Rawle in the 149 pound match. The Wolverines came back to seemingly put things out of reach in the 157 pound match after UVSC's Tanner Cowan scored a 4-1 decision over Nathan Gerrard to give Utah Valley an 18-9 lead.
The next two matches proved to be very important for the Bears. In the 165 pound match, Devan Lewis came through for Northern Colorado, claiming a 6-3 decision over the Wolverines' Devin Siddoway. The win pulled the Bears within 18-12. If Northern Colorado could manage a decision victory in the 174 pound match, they would have clinched at least a tie because Reece Hopkin got an automatic victory in the 197 pound category due to a forfeit. But Shawn Hart's effort in the match clinched the victory for the Bears, as he scored a 15-0 technical fall 7:00 into the match over the Wolverines' D.J. Meis to give Northern Colorado five points. The win made the score 18-17. Utah Valley's Ivan Bigney tallied a 10-3 decision over Tim Sexton in the 184 pound match, but Hopkin's six points gave the Bears the win.
HOPKIN RANKED 20TH NATIONALLY AT 197 POUNDS IN INTERMAT RANKINGS
University of Northern Colorado redshirt sophomore wrestler Reece Hopkin is ranked 20th nationally at the 197 pound weight class in the latest InterMat/NWCA/NWMA Division I Individual Rankings, which were released on Tuesday. The national ranking is the first obtained by a Northern Colorado wrestler since the Bears began the reclassification process to Division I. The Northern Colorado wrestling program will officially be eligible for the NCAA Championships beginning in 2006-07. Hopkin is currently 13-4 on the season at 197 pounds, including a pinfall victory over Boise State's Casey Phelps, who is ranked 11th in this week's national rankings. Hopkin was 4-0 last Saturday at the Lone Star Duals in Dallas, winning three matches at 197 and bumping up to heavyweight for the team's finale, a match that he won to help the Bears to a victory over Clarion. Hopkin is a combined 34-14 in his two seasons with the Bears.
BEARS SPLIT FOUR AT LONE STAR DUALS
The University of Northern Colorado wrestling team opened the dual portion of its 2005-06 schedule by splitting a quartet of matches at the 2006 Lone Star Duals, held at the South Grand Prairie Warrior Coliseum in Dallas, Texas. The Bears topped Clarion and Newman and fell to North Carolina and Purdue in action on Saturday. Northern Colorado (2-2 in duals) opened the ninth annual event by falling to ACC foe North Carolina 27-12. They rebounded with a 36-9 victory over NAIA Newman University before falling to the Big Ten's Purdue 25-10. The Bears capped off the event with a 21-15 come-from-behind victory over Clarion. Redshirt sophomore Reece Hopkin was a perfect 4-for-4 on the day, including moving from 197 pounds to heavyweight to claim a victory in the event's nightcap. Sophomore Shawn Hart equaled Hopkin's performance, by winning all four of his matches at 174 pounds. True freshman Will Cusker won three of his four matches in his collegiate dual debut. Sophomore Tim Sexton, redshirt sophomore Kyle LeValley and senior Nathan Gerrard were the only other Northern Colorado wrestlers to win more than one match on the day, as each were victorious twice. In the opener against the Tar Heels, it was Cusker, Hopkin and Hart who scored the only victories of the match for the Bears. But UNC was able to bounce back against Newman, winning all but two matches, at 165 pounds and heavyweight (a spot in the order they forfeited all in each of the first three matches of the day). Beau Hessler (125) and Richard Lohr (141) picked up victories in the match. Lohr did so by pinfall, 59 seconds in to the match, as did Hopkin, who won at 3:31. The trio of Cusker, Hopkin and Hart were victorious in the match against the Boilermakers, once again marking the only Northern Colorado victories in the match. In the nightcap against Clarion, the Bears fell behind early, losing the first three matches of the event. But LeValley got the Bears on the winning track, scoring a 11-4 victory over Derrick Smith. Gerrard followed that up with a win. After the Bears were on the short-end of the decision at 165, the Bears would not lose again. Hart won at 174, Sexton won at 184 and redshirt freshman Ryan Johnson claimed a forfeit victory at 197 pounds. That left Hopkin to bump up to heavyweight, and he claimed a 8-3 victory over Richard Brooks.
BEARS PLACE SIX AT UNK LOPER OPEN
The University of Northern Colorado wrestling team had six grapplers place at the Nebraska-Kearney Loper Open on Saturday. Sophomore Kenny Hashimoto was named the most outstanding wrestler. Hashimoto, wrestling as unattached, took the 141 pound title after going 4-0, including two pinfalls. Hashimoto won the championship match on an 8-4 decision over Nebraska-Kearney's Jeff Rutledge. Senior Luke Salazar went 4-1 in the 157 pound class and beat teammate Chase Walker on his way to taking third place. Walker claimed fifth place in the same category after beating Chadron State's Jared Webster 11-3 in a majority decision. Freshman Tony Mustari wrestled unattached and went 4-1 on his way to a third place finish in the 125 pound category. Mustari lost his first match but rebounded to win four straight matches, capped off by a 3-1 decision over Dana College's Craig Trampe. Redshirt freshman Tito Rinaldis went 3-2 in the 165 pound class and took fifth place honors after scoring a pinfall at 3:51 over Morningside's Eric Hume.
HART CLAIMS 174 POUND TITLE AT BOB SMITH/FORT HAYS OPEN
Sophomore Shawn Hart claimed the title at 174 pounds on Saturday at the Fort Hays State/Bob Smith Open. Two other Bears had third place finishes on the day for Northern Colorado. Hart breezed the the championship, winning matches by scores of 4-0, 7-0 and 6-2 before pinning Chadron State's Willy Jones at 5:10 in the championship bout. Sophomore Tim Sexton claimed third place at 184 pounds while sophomore Reece Hopkin was third at 197. A pair of redshirts, Tony Mustari (4th at 125) and Kenny Hashimoto (2nd at 141) also competed well, wrestling unattached.
THREE BEARS WIN TITLES AT OLD CHICAGO/NORTHERN COLORADO OPEN
Northern Colorado's Tony Mustari (125), Kenny Hashimoto (141) and Nathan Gerrard (157) each won individual titles on Nov. 19 at the Old Chicago/Northern Colorado Open held at Butler-Hancock Sports Pavilion. Hashimoto defeated several quality opponents on his way to the title at 141 pounds, and earned Most Outstanding Wrestler honors. He topped NAIA National runner-up Chris Smith in the finals by a 6-4 margin. On his way through the bracket, Hashimoto had a pair of fall victories and an 11-0 win over Anthony Elder of Western Wyoming. Mustari topped No. 1 seed Talon Vickers of Utah Valley State by a 3-1 margin in the final at 125. At 157, Gerrard scored a 6-4 sudden victory over teammate Luke Salazar. Salazar had dominated his way through the bracket early in the day, winning 6-0, 9-2, 7-2 and by fall at 1:36. Sophomore Chase Walker defeated Noomis Jones 4-0 in the third place match at 157. Kyle Kaiser earned a fourth place finish at 133 as did Kyle LeValley at 149.
BEARS PLACE SIX AT COWBOY OPEN
The University of Northern Colorado wrestling team started its season on Nov. 14 at the Wyoming Cowboy Open at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, Wyo. The Bears had six place-winners, including three wrestlers that took first place in their divisions. Shawn Hart recorded three pins and one decision en route to snatching first place in the 174 pound open division. Hart notched a 4-0 open record. Chase Walker took first place in the open 157 pound division after recording a 7-6 decision over Oregon's Kyle Hartzel. Walker went 4-0 in the open. Tim Sexton claimed first in the 184 pound 20 and under division after going 2-0. Reece Hopkin went 3-1 and tallied two pins on his way to taking second place in the 197 pound open division. Sophomore Kenny Hashimoto placed third in the open 141 pound weight division. Hashimoto went 4-1 at the event and recorded two pins. Redshirt freshman Tito Rinaldis went 3-2 and recorded a fourth place finish in the 165 pound 20-and-under division. Unattached wrestlers with Northern Colorado ties also had success. Tony Mustari went 4-1 and took second in the 125 pound 20-and-under division in his first collegiate action. Senior Luke Salazar claimed third in the 157 pound open division after posting a 5-1 record.
BEARS HOST FIVE DUALS THIS SEASON
The Bears will host five duals this season. The first dual will be at 7 p.m. on Feb. 2 against South Dakota State. Northern Colorado will also host North Dakota State (7 p.m. on Feb. 6), Cal State-Fullerton (2 p.m. on Feb. 11), Air Force (6 p.m. on Feb. 23) and Utah Valley State (8 p.m. on Feb. 23).
Currently in his 19th year at Northern Colorado, head coach Jack Maughan will continue a new era as the Bears re-enter the Division I ranks after a more than 30-year absence. With the Bears competing as an Independent school, Maughan will hope to be instrumental in forming a new wrestling conference with neighboring rivals Wyoming and Air Force along with former North Central Conference rivals North Dakota State and South Dakota State. Maughan is 109-133-1 in his career.