Cowboys Win 33rd Wrestling Title

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (http://www.okstate.com) -- Oklahoma State sent five wrestlers into the NCAA finals and clinched the team title Friday at the Savvis Center in St. Louis. The last time Oklahoma State had five wrestlers compete in the finals was in 1992. Four of those five finished as the runner-up and the Cowboys were runner-up to Iowa in the team race.

This time around things have gone much differently for Oklahoma State. OSU will try for two school records tomorrow: total team points and margin of victory. The Cowboys scored 143 team points in 2003, and they currently have 127.5. Last year, OSU won by 41.5 points and are currently leading by 56 points, which could grow with five finalists.

"I felt like this title was earned more so than the last two,?" head coach John Smith said. ? "We were challenged and we responded and did what we had to do.?"

Freshman Coleman Scott earned All-American status by defeating Harvard?'s Robbie Preston. Scott trailed late in the match, but got a third period takedown and rode Preston out to earn the 5-4 victory. Scott is the first true freshman from OSU to become an All-American since Eric Guerrero finished fifth in 1996. Scott fell to Cal Poly?s Victor Moreno and will wrestle Minnesota?s Bobbe Lowe, whom he has already defeated in this tournament, for seventh place.

Freshman Daniel Frishkorn advanced in the consolation bracket and became an All-American by pinning Northwestern?s Ryan Lang in 2:22. Frishkorn advanced to the consolation semifinals after defeating Michigan?s third-seeded Josh Churella.

Fellow freshman Nathan Morgan was defeated in the consolation bracket one round from becoming an All-American.

Zack Esposito was the first Cowboy to take the mat in the championship semifinal round. Michigan'?s fifth-seeded Eric Tannenbaum recorded the first takedown, but Esposito responded by scoring seven unanswered points to advance to the finals for the second straight year. Esposito will face Army?'s second-seeded Phillip Simpson in the finals.

Johny Hendricks will make his first trip to the finals after knocking off second-seeded Ryan Churella of Michigan. Hendricks controlled the match from the start. Hendricks will face Mark Perry of Iowa who upset Lehigh'?s Troy Letters in the other semifinal match.

"?I am disappointed I did not get a chance to beat Letters,?" Hendricks said after his semifinal match. "?Mark Perry is a tough opponent, he is a good rider.?"

Chris Pendleton woke up after a sloppy match in the second round and recorded his second technical fall on the day when he defeated Cornell?'s fifth-seeded Joe Mazzurco, 16-1. Pendleton will meet Missouri?'s Ben Askren for the third time this season.

Jake Rosholt had another battle with Nebraska'?s B.J. Padden. Rosholt built an early lead, but it was Padden who came back to make things interesting. The match was tied in the third period, and it was Rosholt who got the late takedown to come away with a 10-9 victory in a rematch of the Big 12 finals. Rosholt will face Northern Iowa?'s Sean Stender who upset Lehigh?'s Jon Trenge in the other semifinal.

"?I am just looking forward to being in the finals tomorrow,"? junior 197-pounder Jake Rosholt said. ?"I do not care who it is against, it makes no difference to me.?"

Steve Mocco was OSU?'s last semifinal match and he became the fifth finalist with a 4-0 victory over Indiana?s Pat DeGain. Mocco will face Minnesota?'s Cole Konrad in the finals who has taken Mocco to overtime twice this season, but Mocco came out on top each time.

The finals will be aired live on ESPN beginning at 4 p.m. The matches will also be broadcast in Stillwater on 93.7 FM or online at okstate.com.

Semifinals (seed)
149: (1) Zack Esposito (OSU) vs. (5) Eric Tannenbaum (UM), 7-2
165: (3) Johny Hendricks (OSU) vs. (2) Ryan Churella (UM), 6-2
174: (1) Chris Pendleton (OSU) TF5 (5) Joe Mazzurco (Cor), 16-1 (4:02)
197: (2) Jake Rosholt (OSU) Dec. (11) B.J. Padden (NU), 10-9
285: (1) Steve Mocco (OSU) Dec. (4) Pat DeGain (IU), 4-0

Fourth Round Consolation
125: (9) Coleman Scott (OSU) Dec. Robbie Preston (Harv), 5-4
133: (11) Evan Sola (UNC) Dec. (7) Nathan Morgan (OSU), 4-0
141: (7) Daniel Frishkorn (OSU) Fall Ryan Lang (NW), 2:22

Quarterfinal Consolation
125: (4) Vic Moreno (CP) Dec. (9) Coleman Scott (OSU), 5-4
141: (7) Daniel Frishkorn (OSU) Dec. Josh Churella (UM), 8-6

Standings
1. Oklahoma State 127.5
2. Cornell 71.5
3. Michigan 67.0
4. Minnesota 66.0
5. Iowa 64.0
6. Oklahoma 61.0
7. Illinois 60.5
8. Iowa State 52.5
9. Indiana 49.0
10. Lehigh 41.5

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