5th seed Ben Cherrington is the only Boise State wrestler still alive in the championship round at the 2006 NCAA National Wrestling Championships in Oklahoma City. The 157-pound senior scored a pair of 7-0 wins, downing highly regarded Kevin Ward Oklahoma State 7-0, then putting away William Rowe of Oklahoma. Cherrington is now in the national quarterfinals tomorrow morning against Michael Chandler of Missouri. Chandler was given a bye in the first round, and then upset 4th-seed Matthew Lebe of West Virginia 3-2. A win there would guarantee him All-America status.
While Cherrington's teammates left him all by himself in the championship round, all four Broncos are still clinging to life in the tournament. Senior Scott Jorgensen, the #9 seed at 133 pounds, lost to unseeded Phillip Plowman of Eastern Michigan 9-6. Jorgensen bounced back for an 11-4 win over Omar Gaitan of UC-Davis. Jorgensen will now meet Patrick Aleksanyan of Nebraska. Aleksanyan pined David Armstrong of Cleveland State before losing to #3 seed Thomas Clum of Wisconsin 11-3.
Tyler Sherfey defeated #11 Troy Tirapelle of Illinois 19-4 in the 149-pound class. Sherfey then lost to #6 seed Jonathan Masa of Hofstra 6-0. He now goes to the wrestleback round to take on a familiar foe, Anthony Baza of Cal State-Bakersfield. Baza lost to #1 seed Dustin Schlatter of Minnesota then advanced because of a medical forfeit on the part of Pittsburgh's Joseph Ecklof.
# 12 Casey Phelps defeated Malcom Haven Wyoming 7-2 in the opening round at 197 pounds. Phelps then lost 3-2 to Joel Flaggert, the 5th seed from Oklahoma. He now drops to consolation, where he'll face David Dashiell of North Carolina. Dashiell lost to #2 seed Kyle Cerminara of Buffalo 2-1, then defeated Iowa's Daniel Erekson 7-1.
Andy Patrick defeated Jeremy Mosely of Edinboro 5-1 but was pined by #2 seed Steve Mocco of Oklahoma State just 1 minute, 30 seconds into the match. Patrick now will take on #12 seed Adam LoPiccolo of American. LoPiccolo lost to Kirk Nail of Ohio State 6-4 in his first match.
Jorgensen, Sherfey, Phelps and Patrick must win three matches in a row to reach All-America status. One more loss by any of the four and they are eliminated from further competition.
Boise State has 13 points, well out of the top ten after the first day of competition. Fellow Pac-10 member and league champion Arizona State is in 10th place with 19.5 points. Oklahoma State is in first place in its quest for a fourth straight national championship with 36.5 points. The Cowboys are followed by Oklahoma with 24.5 points, 3rd-place Edinboro with 23, #4 Hofstra with 22.5 while Nebraska and Michigan are tied for 5th with 22 points.