Cowboy Wrestlers Send Seniors Out in Style, Beat Air Force 37-3

Feb. 19, 2009


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The University of Wyoming wrestling team's senior class enjoyed a memorable evening on Thursday night in the UniWyo Sports Complex, as the Cowboys whipped the Air Force Falcons by a score of 37-3 in a Western Wrestling Conference dual.

Wyoming's season record is now 14-3 overall, 4-0 in the WWC. Air Force falls to 4-11 overall, 1-4 in league duals.

The `Pokes led from wire-to-wire, winning bouts in nine of ten weight classes and earning bonus points in four of those victories.

Five Cowboy seniors were honored prior to the match, four were physically able to wrestle and three earned victories in their final home matches of the season.

Cody Grant won an 8-5 decision at 133 pounds, Cody Chipperfield got a 7-4 win in the 149 pound weight class, Eric Coxbill pinned his opponent at 157 pounds, while Mikel Hoopes gave all he had in a 7-5 overtime loss at 197 pounds. Dan Barrone has been out all season due to injury and was the only Cowboy senior that did not compete.

"I'm fired up about our seniors tonight," Wyoming head coach Mark Branch said. "They got to wrestle one more time at home, in front of their families and friends, and they all had exciting matches. I was a little grumpy after the way the dual began, but the effort of our seniors really made my night. That was cool to see."

In addition to the Cowboy seniors' performances, UW also received dominating efforts from No. 8-ranked Joe LeBlanc at 184 pounds, Jacob Scharbrough at heavyweight, Michael Martinez at 125 pounds and Cole Dallaserra at 141 pounds. LeBlanc earned an 18-1 technical fall victory, Dallaserra got a win by fall at the 5:40 mark in his match, while Scharbrough (12-4) and Martinez (13-5) each won by major decision.

Also getting wins for Wyoming were No. 19-ranked Shane Onufer, by a score of 11-9 at 174 pounds, and Alex Rieder, by a score of 9-8, at 165 pounds.

Onufer's win gave him 38 wins this season, which ties him for seventh on UW's All-Time Single Season Victories list with Reese Andy, who had 38 wins during the 1995-96 season. LeBlanc now has 37 victories, which ties him for ninth on that same list.

"On the whole I liked the way our team competed and I was pleased with the outcome," Branch continued. "There were still some errors that we need to correct before the conference tournament and we need to continue wrestling with urgency. We need to focus on the post-season and train with the purpose of becoming champions."

Wyoming's final dual of the season will take place next Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 7 p.m. in Greeley, Colo., when UW will face Northern Colorado. The Cowboys will attempt to remain undefeated in WWC duals and claim at least a share of the league dual championship. Following that match-up, UW will compete in the West Regional and Western Wrestling Conference Tournament on Saturday, March 7. That event will also be in Greeley and will be hosted by UNC.

Wyoming (WYO) 37, Air Force (AFA) 3

174 pounds - No. 19 Shane Onufer (WYO) by decision over Stephen Crozier (AFA), 11-9, 3-0 WYO
184 pounds - No. 8 Joe LeBlanc (WYO) by technical fall (5) over Brett Boyce (AFA), 3:37, 18-1, 8-0 WYO
197 pounds - James Ciccone (AFA) by SV decision over Mikel Hoopes (WYO), 7-5 (OT), 8-3 WYO
Hwt. (285) - Jacob Scharbrough (WYO) by major decision over Stephen Larson (AFA), 12-4, 12-3 WYO
125 pounds - Michael Martinez (WYO) by major decision over Andrew Zwirlein (AFA), 13-5, 16-3 WYO
133 pounds - Cody Grant (WYO) by decision over Derek Gillespie (AFA), 8-5, 19-3 WYO
141 pounds - Cole Dallaserra (WYO) by fall over Tyler Untrauer (AFA), 5:40, 25-3 WYO
149 pounds - Cody Chipperfield (WYO) by decision over Alec Williams (AFA), 7-4, 28-3 WYO
157 pounds - Eric Coxbill (WYO) by fall over Joseph Stafford (AFA), 3:56, 34-3 WYO
165 pounds - Alex Rieder (WYO) by decision over Justin Shadrix (AFA), 9-8, 37-3 WYO