Pokes go 0-4 in Big XII Finals, finish fourth overall
TULSA, Okla., – The Wyoming Wrestling team finished in fourth place at the Big 12 Championships Sunday night inside the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla.
The Pokes totaled 105.5, the highest team score they have ever posted at the Big 12 Championships. Wyoming finished behind co-champions Oklahoma and Oklahoma State who had 124 points and Iowa State who finished with 117.5 points.
The fourth-place finish ties for the best finish in program history at the Big 12 Championships.
“I’m proud of our effort, this is the reason we are in the Big 12 to experience those big-time situations,” UW head coach Mark Branch said “We got a lot of positives to build on. Those guys that got into the finals had to fight to make their way there and I’m proud of them. You want to talk about living Cowboy tough and wrestling Cowboy tough.”
Wyoming was paced by Cole Moody (165), Tate Samuelson (184), Stephen Buchanan (197) and Brian Andrews (285) who all finished in second place in Tulsa. It was the highest career finish at the tournament for Moody, Samuelson and Buchanan. All four Cowboys earned automatic qualification to the NCAA Tournament with their efforts.
Hayden Hastings earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships after going 2-0 on the day. Hastings opened his day with a thrilling win over Anthony Mantanona (OU). After almost being put to his back, Hastings turned it around and pinned Mantanona with one second left in the first period.
In his third-place bout Hastings faced Dustin Plott (OSU) and used a strong second and third period to defeat Plott and finish third at the Big 12 Championships, beating him for the second time this season.
Chase Zollmann (141) and Jacob Wright (157) both won their placing matches with each of the grapplers finishing 5th, the highest finish for either wrestler at the Big 12 Championships. Jaron Jensen (149) wrapped up his tournament with a sixth place for the Cowboys.
With five wrestlers qualified, the Cowboys now set their sights on the NCAA tournament. The at-large qualifier bids for the NCAA Tournament will be announced on Tuesday March 9.
The Cowboys will travel to St. Louis to compete in the NCAA Championships March 18-20 held in the Enterprise Center.
Day Two Results
141 - Chase Zollmann – 5th place
Consi. Semifinals – No. 3 Clay Carlson (SDSU) Dec. No. 8 Zollmann (WYO) 2-1
5th Place Match – No. 8 Zollmann (WYO) Dec. No. 7 Dylan Droegemueller (NDSU) 2-0
149 - Jaron Jensen – 6th place
Consi. Semifinals – Kyle Parco (FSU) Dec. Jensen (WYO) 6-4 (SV-1)
5th Place Match – No. 4 Triston Lara (UNI) Major Dec. Jensen (WYO) 18-8
157 - Jacob Wright – 5th place
Consi. Semifinals – No. 2 Justin Thomas (OU) Dec. No. 5 Wright (WYO) 8-2
5th Place Match – No. 5 Wright (WYO) Dec. Alex Hornfeck (WVU) 4-2
165 - Cole Moody – 2nd Place
No. 4 Luke Weber (NDSU) Dec. No. 3 Cole Moody (WYO) 11-7
174 - Hayden Hastings – 3rd place
Consi. Semifinals – No. 2 Hastings Fall (2:59) No. 8 Anthony Mantanona (OU)
3rd Place Match – No. 2 Hastings Dec. No. 3 Dustin Plott (OSU) 9-3
184 - Tate Samuelson – 2nd place
No. 1 Parker Keckeisen (UNI) Dec. No. 2 Samuelson (WYO) 5-3
197 - Stephen Buchanan – 2nd Place
No. 4 AJ Ferrari (OSU) Dec. No. 2 Buchanan (WYO) 13-8
285 - Brian Andrews – 2nd Place
No. 1 Gannon Gremmel (ISU) Dec. No. 3 Andrews (WYO) 2-0
* University of Wyoming press release