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The 2007 Big 12 Conference Tournament came down to the final bout of the day with Oklahoma State’s Jared Rosholt needing to beat Iowa State’s David Zabriskie to give the Cowboys a fifth straight league title.
A Zabriskie win and the Cyclones would be champions with O-State in third, a half point behind host Missouri.
In the end it was ISU’s rookie 285-pounder who used a first-period double leg for the deciding points in a 3-2 victory. It gave ISU, under first-year coach Cael Sanderson, its first conference title since 1982 — Iowa State and OSU tied for the top spot in 1987.
“We tried to downplay it a little, but (Zabriskie) knew the situation,” said Sanderson, whose squad also crowned 157-pounder Trent Paulson as champion. “We have a solid team and we have four seniors who did a great job for us (Saturday) and six freshmen who are getting valuable experience.
“We’ll take this and go get ready for the national tournament.”
Iowa State totaled 661⁄2 points and finished five points better than Missouri. The Tigers crowned Ben Askren at 174 and gave the Pokes a little help at 184 where Raymond Jordan knocked off ISU’s Jake Varner. Max Askren then beat Nebraska’s Craig Brester in the 197-pound final to push the hosts by OSU into second place in a frantic team race.
The Cowboys trailed Iowa State by 71⁄2 points entering the final session and drew to within 11⁄2 when Coleman Scott picked up his second Big 12 title with a 6-5 win over Tyler McCormick of Missouri at 133 and Nathan Morgan’s 6-3 victory over Nebraska’s Dominick Moyer at 141.
Scott (26-3) was in control of McCormick when a late cradle had the Cowboy junior scrambling to stay off his back.
“It’s a win, and that is the most important thing, but I didn’t finish my match,” said Scott, who’s beaten McCormick 2-of-3 times this season. “I wrestled well the first half of the match, but for whatever reason I shut it down.
“I think the fact that I’m as flexible as I am helped.”
Morgan (16-3) was never in trouble against Moyer, who beat Morgan in the dual in Lincoln last month. It was Morgan’s third league title.
O-State’s third champion, Johny Hendricks, was in an absolute dogfight with ISU’s Travis Paulson. Hendricks gave up a first-period takedown and trailed 3-2, but found a way to score near the edge of the mat against an overly aggressive Paulson.
It was his 52nd straight victory and his third conference title in four seasons.
“As usual, I found a way to make it tough on myself,” admitted Hendricks. “But it seems like everytime I wrestle it’s against one of the top guys. I wasn’t at my best, but I found a way to win. This time of year that is all that counts.
“We came here as the underdog and we were right in the mix until the end. And we didn’t wrestle our best (Saturday).”
The Pokes’ fifth finalist, Brandon Mason at 174, ran into Askren and his 80 straight wins. After challenging the defending NCAA champ in the dual in Stillwater, this time it was all Askren in a 13-4 major decision.
“What I saw was a team that was lethargic at times,” said OSU head coach John Smth. “But the fact that this team was right in the thick of the team race is a positive. We came here to win and didn’t get it done.”
Oklahoma crowned two champions, Sam Hazewinkel and Matt Storniolo, and had just two bronze medalists in Kyle Terry at 141 and Joel Flaggert at 197.
Hazewinkel (21-0) won his third league title and was voted Outstanding Wrestler by the coaches after the tournament.
The wild-card meeting produced 157-pounder Newly McSpadden (17-16) for Smith and OSU will take eight to the NCAA Championship in Auburn Hills, Mich., March 15-17.
Iowa State qualified 10, Missouri eight and both Nebraska and the Sooners six each.
COLUMBIA, Mo. — You want close?
This Week's Circulars
Johanna Lucille Bartlett, 85, passed away June 10, 2021 at her home in Stillwater. A celebration of life will be held Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at the St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Stillwater at 2:00pm. www.dightonmarler.com.
John Palumberi, Jr., 83, died June 3, 2021. A Rosary will be 7:00pm on Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church. Funeral Mass will follow, 10:00am June 16, 2021 at St. Francis. Strode.
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