NORMAN, Okla. -- The University of Oklahoma wrestling team travels to Omaha, Neb., for the Big 12 Conference Championships on Saturday, March 5 at the Qwest Center. The University of Nebraska will serve as the host institution for this year’s event, but this will mark the first time in Big 12 history that a wrestling championship will take place at a neutral site.
BIG 12 HISTORY
In 1996, the Big 8 became the Big 12 after Texas, Baylor, Texas Tech and Texas A&M joined the conference. Since that time Oklahoma, under head coach Jack Spates, has claimed two out of eight titles, while Oklahoma State has claimed six.
Conference team championships started in 1929 as the Big 6. In 75 years Oklahoma has earned 21 team championships, but trails Oklahoma State by 10.
LAST TIME AT THE BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIPS
Oklahoma placed fifth at the 2004 Big 12 championships in Ames, Iowa. The Sooners walked away with two individual champions. Freshman Sam Hazewinkel picked up his first championship and defeated top-ranked Jason Powell of Nebraska by decision, 5-2. Senior Leonce Crump captured his third title and defeated defending Big 12 champion Will Gruenwald of Oklahoma State by decision, 6-1.
125 Grant Nakamura (ISU) decisioned Austin DeVoe (MU), 2-0
133 Mimi Miller (OU) decisioned Brett Watkins (MU), 5-3
141 Ronnie Delk (OSU) decisioned J.P. Reese (MU), 6-5
149 Trent Paulson (ISU) decisioned Jeff Ecklof (OU), 6-1
157 B.J. Wright (NU) fall Rafael Maturino (OU), 6:59
165 Charles Jones (OU) decisioned Tyron Woodley (MU), 3-2
174 James Pummel (NU) decisioned Grant Turner (ISU), 7-6
184 Travis Pascoe (NU) decisioned Kurt Backes (ISU), 10-3
197 Rusty Blackmon (OSU) decisioned Joel Tapler (OU), 1-0
HWT Nathan McClain (NU) decisioned Mike Whitehead (MU), 7-2 (OT)
125 Jason Powell (NU) decisioned Grant Nakamura ISU), 8-2
Sam Hazewinkel (OU) decisioned Cody Stites (OSU), 5-3
133 Johnny Thompson (OSU) decisioned Mimi Miller (OU), 3-1
Zach Roberson (ISU) decisioned Matt Keller (NU), 7-5
141 Nate Gallick (ISU) decisioned Ronnie Delk (OSU), 3-2
Matt Murray (NU) decisioned Teyon Ware (OU), 3-3 (2 OT) criteria
149 Travis Shufelt (NU) pinned Jeremy Spates (MU), 4:34
Zack Esposito (OSU) decisioned Trent Paulson (ISU), 8-2
157 Johny Hendricks (OSU) decisioned B.J. Wright (NU), 4-1
Kenny Burleson (MU) decisioned Travis Paulson (ISU), 3-1 (2 OT)
165 Tyrone Lewis (OSU) major decisioned Charles Jones (OU), 15-5
Jacob Klein (NU) decisioned Nick Passolano (NU), 3-1
174 Chris Pendleton (OSU) pinned James Pummel (NU), 1:46
Ben Askren (MU) pinned E.K. Waldhaus (OU), 2:07
184 Matt Pell (MU) decisioned Justin Dyer (OU), 3-2
Jake Rosholt (OSU) decisioned Travis Pascoe (NU), 10-5
197 Rusty Blackmon (OSU) decisioned B.J. Padden (NU), 7-4
Jeff Foust (MU) decisioned Trevor Smith (ISU), 6-4
HWT Leonce Crump (OU) decisioned Nathan McClain (NU), 5-2
Will Gruenwald (OSU) decisioned Scott Coleman (ISU), 6-2
125 Cody Stites (OSU) decisioned Austin DeVoe (MU), 3-0
133 Matt Keller (NU) major decisioned Brett Watkins (MU), 12-3
141 Teyon Ware (OU) decisioned J.P. Reese (MU), 5-3 (OT)
149 Jeff Ecklof (OU) decisioned Jeremy Spates (MU), 4-2
157 Travis Paulson (ISU) decisioned Rafael Maturino (OU), 4-3
165 Nick Passolano (ISU) decisioned Tyron Woodley (MU), 8-4
174 E.K. Waldhaus (OU) decisioned Grant Turner (ISU), 14-8
184 Kurt Backes (ISU) decisioned Justin Dyer (OU), 8-5
197 Trevor Smith (ISU) decisioned Joel Tapler (OU), 8-2
HWT Scott Coleman (ISU) decisioned Mike Whitehead (MU), 8-2
3rd place: (Winners advance to NCAA Tournament)
125 Grant Nakamura (ISU) decisioned Cody Stites (OSU), 3-2 (OT)
133 Matt Keller (NU) decisioned Mimi Miller (OU), 6-3
141 Teyon Ware (OU) decisioned Ronnie Delk (OSU), 3-3 (2 OT) criteria #2
149 Trent Paulson (ISU) decisioned Jeff Ecklof (OU), 3-1
157 B.J. Wright (NU) decisioned Travis Paulson (ISU), 3-2
165 Nick Passolano (ISU) decisioned Charles Jones (OU), 4-2
174 E.K. Waldhaus (OU) decisioned James Pummel (NU), 9-4
184 Kurt Backes (ISU) decisioned Travis Pascoe (NU), 6-3
197 B.J. Padden (NU) major decisioned Trevor Smith (ISU), 12-4
HWT Scott Coleman (ISU) decisioned Nathan McClain (NU), 7-2
184 Travis Pascoe (NU) decisioned Justin Dyer (OU), 7-6
125 Sam Hazewinkel (OU) decisioned Jason Powell (NU), 5-2
133 Johnny Thompson (OSU) pinned Zach Roberson (ISU), 6:22
141 Nate Gallick (ISU) decisioned Matt Murray (NU), 2-1 OT
149 Zack Esposito (OSU) decisioned Travis Shufelt (NU), 7-5
157 Kenny Burleson (MU) decisioned Johny Hendricks (OSU), 3-2
165 Tyrone Lewis (OSU) major decisioned Jacob Klein (NU), 12-4
174 Ben Askren (MU) decisioned Chris Pendelton (OSU), 9-7
184 Jake Rosholt (OSU) decisioned Matt Pell (MU), 11-6
197 Jeff Foust (MU) decisioned Rusty Blackmon (OSU), 2-1
HWT Leonce Crump (OU) dec. Will Gruenwald (OSU), 6-1
UP NEXT FOR THE SOONERS
The 75th 2005 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships take place March 17-19, 2005, at the Savvis Center in St. Louis, Mo. The Gateway City becomes the first city to host the tournament in back-to-back years.
STORNIOLO SURPASSES TEAMMATES
After returning from injury, Matt Storniolo (29-3) pinned Orlando Perez of Oregon State, Nate Gipson of Oregon and No. 15 Cody Greene of Missouri. Storniolo leads the Sooners in single-season falls with 13, and is currently tied for sixth place on the OU single-season fall list with former Sooners Leonce Crump, Jared Frayer, Dan Chaid and Joe Melchiore.
Against Big 12 Conference opponent Missouri, Storniolo was one of five Sooners who walked away with a win and helped Oklahoma edge out Missouri, 18-14, to earn its only Big 12 win of the season
Storniolo is the first Sooners to log three consecutive pins in dual competition since Josh Lambrecht did so during the 2002-03 season.
Justin Dyer (184) is tied with former Sooners Leonce Crump, Jeff Eckloff, Andre Metzger, Edcar Thomas, Wayne Wells, John Laviolette and Danny Hodge for the 19th spot on the OU’s single-season pin list with 11. Sam Hazewinkel is tied with Danny Hodge, Frank DeAngelis and Mark Tatum for the 20th spot with 10. Dyer (184) has eight pins and three technical falls on the season and Hazewinkel (125) has eight pins and two tech falls
OKLAHOMA LEADS THE BIG 12
In Big 12 Conference competition, two Sooners lead the pack in wins in overall, dual and against Big 12 records. At 125 pounds, top-ranked Sam Hazewinkel leads with a perfect 33-0 overall record, 21-0 in duals and 5-0 against Big 12. Junior Teyon Ware leads at 141 pounds with a 27-2 overall, 20-2 in dual and 3-2 against Big 12.
After Matt Storniolo’s (149) stellar three-for-three performance against Oregon, Oregon State and Missouri, he moved up the list of Big 12 overall fall leaders to tie for fifth with Jake Rosholt of Oklahoma State with 13.
In fifth place on the dual takedown leader’s list is Hazewinkel with 54. Ware is seventh with 45.
IF THE SEASON ENDED TODAY...
If the season ended today Matt Storniolo (149) would move into 17th place on OU’s single-season fall percentage with 13-of-29 and 44.8 percent. Storniolo surpassed former Sooner Josh Lambrecht (2001) and now trails Duwayne Miller (1961) with 6-of-13 and 46.1 percent.
If the season ended today Sam Hazewinkel (125) would end with a perfect 33-0 season record and place third on OU’s single-season victory percentage with 100 percent. Hazewinkel is currently one wins short of tying for second place with former Sooner Byron Tucker (34-0,100 percent). Hazewinkel is only four wins shy of first place held by former Sooner and national champion Michael Lightner (37-0). Hazewinkel will have chance with the Big 12 Conference Championships and the NCAA Championships left in competition.
MOVING ON UP
At 125 pounds Sam Hazewinkel has far surpassed his dual points scored at the end of last season. Last season Hazewinkel ended with 143 points scored in dual competition. This season, with a dual against Michigan State, Big 12 Conference Championships and NCAA Championships left in competition, Hazewinkel has already acquired 187 points, while only giving up 52 points and only eight points from takedowns.
At 125 pounds, top-ranked Sam Hazewinkel has made impressive improvements since last season. At the end of his 2003-04 campaign, Hazewinkel had competed 40 times, acquired an overall record of 35-5 and was 17-4 in duals. During that time, Hazewinkel earned six falls, one technical fall and seven major decisions.
This season Hazewinkel has competed 33 times and has an undefeated 33-0 overall record and is 22-0 in duals. Currently, Hazewinkel has earned eight falls, two technical falls and nine major decisions with the Big 12 Championship and the NCAA Championship left in competition.
HAZEWINKEL NAMED BIG 12 WRESTLER OF THE WEEK
University of Oklahoma sophomore Sam Hazewinkel was named Big 12 Wrestler of the Week for his performance during the week of January 25-31. A 2004 NCAA All-American, Hazewinkel was perfect 27-0 at 125 pounds at the time of the award, with nine of his victories coming against ranked opponents.
Ranked No. 1 in the nation, Hazewinkel defeated No. 8 Grant Nakamura of third-ranked Iowa State by decision, 7-4. Hazewinkel controlled the match, only allowing one takedown and led, 7-1, at the end of the second period.
Hazewinkel has allowed only four takedowns in dual meets, while compiling 41 against his opponents this season.
At the 2005 Cliff/NCWA National Duals, Hazewinkel came full circle during his six matches. Hazewinkel beat Adam Smith of Penn State by decision, 7-2; Luke Smith of Central Michigan by major decision, 12-4; Andrew Rizzi of Lehigh by a technical fall, 16-0; Joe Wornoff of Cleveland State by fall at the 1:20 mark; Kyle Ott of Illinois by overtime decision, 4-2; and won by forfeit against Michigan.
A Sooner had not been selected for Big 12 Wrestler of the Week since Teyon Ware’s selection in his freshman campaign during the 2002-03 season.
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP TICKETS
Good seats are still available for the 2005 Championships. Fans can order tickets by calling the OU ticket office at 1-800-456-4668 or by downloading the official ticket application online at www.SoonerSports.com. All-session mezzanine level tickets are $100 and provide admittance to all six sessions of the tournament.
VOTE FOR THE 75TH ANNIVERSARY TEAM
The 2005 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in St. Louis will feature a special 75th anniversary celebration, marking 75 years of college wrestling’s biggest and most exciting event. The 75th anniversary celebration will take place in between sessions three and four on Friday, March 18. Leading up to the championships, fans are encouraged to cast their votes for the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships 75th anniversary team. That team - which will include 15 of the greatest wrestlers in collegiate wrestling history-will be introduced and honored at the celebration in St. Louis. You can vote now for the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships 75th anniversary team by visiting www.nwcaonline.com or by accessing the link at www.ncaasports.com.
OKLAHOMA'S PROBABLE LINEUP
125: Sam Hazewinkel (HAZE-wink-el) (33-0)
133: Joe Comparin (Com- PREEN) (13-12)
141: Teyon Ware (TEE-on WEAR) (27-2)
149: Matt Storniolo (Stor-nee-O-lo) (28-3)
157: Charles Jones (13-11)
165: Wes Roberts (6-3) or Randy Sulaver (Suh-LAH-ver) (10-17)
174: E.K. Waldhaus (24-7)
184: Justin Dyer (28-9)
197: Joel Flaggert (16-5)
Heavyweight: Jake Hager (HAY-ger) (23-6) or Joel Tapler (7-5)