Wrestling takes fourth at Pac-12 Championships

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The Arizona State University wrestling team took fourth at the 2012 Pac-12 Wrestling Championships, Feb. 26, in Boise, Idaho. Junior heavyweight Levi Cooper was the lone Sun Devils finalist, taking second overall at Taco Bell Arena on Sunday.

The Sun Devils competed eight freshmen at the conference championship – the most of any team in the competition. 

Arizona State totaled 102.5 points, finishing behind third place Stanford’s 125 and runner-up and host Boise State’s 129. Oregon State was the team champion with 138 points. 

Complete recaps of each of the day’s sessions can be found below.


No. 9 Levi Cooper couldn’t find any opening in his final bout with No. 4 Clayton Jack. The Oregon State senior shut Cooper out 3-0 to claim the Pac-12 title while Arizona State’s All-American settled for second. 

Nathan Hoffer nabbed third place at 141 pounds, falling behind early to Boise State’s Josh Straight before ripping off 5 straight points in the final period to win 9-4. 

Eric Starks earned his second consecutive third place finish at the conference championships at 174 pounds, defeating Boise State’s Scott Bacon, 10-4.

In the consolation final at 125 pounds, redshirt freshman Dalton Miller fell behind early and strung together an impressive comeback in the final seconds. Trailing 5-2 with less than 10 seconds left, Miller took CSU Bakersfield’s Tyler Iwamura to his back with about four seconds left but was only credited about a second and a half of near-fall time. Iwamura earned the riding time point and won the match 6-4, thought a two-point near fall would have tied it.

Shane McGough dropped his consolation final match to Stanford’s Garrett Drucker, 12-0. Redsirt freshman Kevin Radford also dropped his consolation final match, 4-3, to Oregon State’s Ty Vinson.


The Sun Devils regrouped after a tough semifinal round, starting with Dalton Miller earning a decision over Boise State’s Landon Hartley to advance to the consolation finals.

Nathan Hoffer and Shane McGough followed suit, with McGough earning a major win over Stanford’s Matt Sencenbaugh, 16-3, and Hoffer taking the decision over Stanford’s Alex Manley, 8-2.

The Sun Devils again suffered losses at 149, 157 and 165 pounds before Eric Starks got a victory in the consolation semis against CSUB’s Brady Garner, 10-2, to advance to the consolation finals.

Redshirt freshman Kevin Radford did the same at 184 pounds, holding off CSUB’s Ruben Franklin for the 8-6 decision. 

In the fifth-place matches, Joel Smith finally got into the win category at 149 pounds with a major decision over CSUB’s Erik Martinez, 14-3, to take fifth overall. 

Chace Eskam had a tough bout in the 197 pound fifth-place match as it when to double overtime before Eskam was able to hold his ride and defeat CSUB’s Aaron Brown for the second time on the day, 3-2. 


Arizona State got things started off on a strong note in the first round, combined for a 7-3 record over the 10 weight classes. Redshirt freshman Dalton Miller got things underway with an upset of fourth-seeded Britain Longmire of Cal Poly, 9-4, avenging an 11-4 loss to Longmire earlier in the season. 

Redshirt freshman Shane McGough scored his eighth pin of the season over Cal Poly’s Jacob Tanenbaum to move into the semifinals at 133 pounds while fellow redshirt freshman Nathan Hoffer logged a shutout over CSU Bakersfield’s Dalton Kelly, 6-0, to also move to the semis. 

ASU suffered losses at the 149, 157 and 165 weight classes before lone senior Eric Starks got the team back on the board with a decision over Oregon State’s John Tuck, 11-5.

Redshirt freshman Kevin Radford scored a major decision over Cal Poly’s Derrick Hawkins, 12-2, and teammate Chace Eskam logged an upset over fourth-seeded Aaron Brown of CSU Bakersfield, 3-2. 

Junior All-American Levi Cooper scored a major decision over Cal Poly’s Kelan Bragg, 11-1, to wrap up the first round of action.

Things took a tough turn for ASU in the semifinals as Miller would get pinned by the top seeded Ryan Mango of Stanford at 125 pounds. 

Shane McGough and Nathan Hoffer both had tough matches in their semifinal round as McGough came out on the losing side of a back-and-forth affair with CSU Bakersfield’s Frank Lomas while Hoffer came just shy of an upset of Michael Mangrum of Oregon State, currently the nation’s fifth ranked 141 pounder.

The rough losses kept came as Eric Starks dropped a 5-3 decision to Cal Poly’s Ryan DesRoches, 5-3 while Kevin Radford was upset by third-seeded Spence Patrick of Stanford, 3-2, and Chace Eskam fell to top-seeded Taylor Meeks of Oregon State, 14-3.

Levi Cooper was the saving grace of the second round, coming from behind in the third to score a late takedown and hold on for the 4-2 decision over Stanford Dan Scherer to advance to the semifinals.


Dalton Miller, 125, 2-2, FOURTH PLACE

Quarters: Miller dec. (4) Britain Longmire (Cal Poly), 9-4

Semis: (1) Ryan Mango (Stanford) pinned Miller, 6:07

Conso Semis: Miller dec. Landon Hartley (Boise State), 7-2

Conso Finals: (3) Tyler Iwamura dec. Miller, 6-4

Shane McGough, 133, 2-2, FOURTH PLACE

Quarters: (3) McGough pinned Jacob Tanenbaum (Cal Poly), 6:06

Semis: (2) Frank Lomas (CSUB) dec. (3) McGough, 11-8

Conso Semis: (3) McGough major Matt Sencenbaugh (Stanford), 16-3

Conso Finals: (4) Garrett Drucker (Stanford) major (3) McGough, 12-0

Nathan Hoffer, 141, 3-1, THIRD PLACE

Quarters: (3) Hoffer dec. Dalton Kelly (CSUB), 6-0

Semis: (2) Michael Mangrum (Oregon State) dec. Hoffer, 8-5

Conso Semis: (3) Hoffer dec. Alex Manley (Stanford), 8-2

Conso Finals: (3) Hoffer dec. (4) Josh Strait, 9-4

Joel Smith, 149, 1-2, FIFTH PLACE

Quarters: Timmy Boone (Stanford) dec. (2) Smith, 2-0

Conso Semis: (4) Steven Hernandez (Boise State) pinned (2) Smith, 3:48

Fifth Place: (2) Smith major Erik Hernandez (CSUB), 14-3

Kyle McIntosh, 157, 0-3, SIXTH PLACE

Quarters: (4) Anthony Box (CSUB) dec. McIntosh, 14-10

Conso Semis: (3) Garrett Schaner (Stanford)dec. McIntosh, 10-4

Fifth Place: Gianpier Yanez (Cal Poly) dec. McIntosh, 10-7

Rush Hall, 165, 0-3, SIXTH PLACE

Quarters: (1) Dominic Kastl (Cal Poly) major Hall, 13-3

Conso Semis: (2) Adam Fierro (CSUB) dec. Hall, 8-2

Fifth Place: (4) Cody Weishoff (Oregon State) major Hall, 13-4

Eric Starks, 174, 3-1, THIRD PLACE

Quarters: (3) Starks dec. John Tuck (Oregon State), 11-5

Semis: (2) Ryan DesRoches (Cal Poly) dec. (3) Starks, 5-3

Conso Semis: (3) Starks major Brady Garner (CSUB), 10-2

Conso Finals: (3) Starks dec. (4) Scott Bacon, 10-4

Kevin Radford, 184, 2-2, FOURTH PLACE

Quarters: (2) Radford major Derrick Hawkins (Cal Poly), 12-2

Semis: (3) Spence Patrick (Stanford) dec. (2) Radford, 3-2

Conso Semis: (2) Radford dec. Ruben Franklin (CSUB), 8-6

Conso Finals: (4) Ty Vinson (Oregon State) dec. (2) Radford, 4-3

Chace Eskam, 197, 2-2, FIFTH PLACE

Quarters: Eskam dec. (4) Aaron Brown (CSUB), 4-3

Semis: (1) Taylor Meeks (Oregon State) major Eskam, 14-3

Conso Semis: Alan Yen (Stanford) dec. Eskam, 5-1

Fifth Place: Eskam dec. (4) Aaron Brown (CSUB), 3-2, TB2

Levi Cooper, HWT, 2-1, SECOND PLACE

Quarters: (2) Cooper major Kelan Bragg (Cal Poly), 11-1

Semis: (2) Cooper dec. (3) Dan Scherer (Stanford), 4-2

Finals: (1) Clayton Jack (Oregon State) dec. (2) Cooper, 3-0