Three Young Cowboys Win Titles at Cormier Open

Nov. 1, 2008

COLBY, Kan. -

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A group of young Wyoming Cowboy wrestlers saw their first competitive action of the 2008-09 season on Saturday at the Daniel Cormier Open in Colby, Kan. In all, UW had three tournament champions, two runners-up and two third place finishes.

"We got what we were looking for from this early season tournament," said Wyoming assistant coach Ben VomBaur. "This was good experience for our younger guys who competed and it will help us, as a coaching staff, address some things that need worked on. The competition will get tougher as the season progresses and we'll keep getting better."

Cowboy redshirt freshmen Joe LeBlanc, Michael Martinez and Shane Onufer all placed first in their weight classes.

Martinez won three matches at 125 pounds, two of which were by major decision. He beat Nebraska-Kearney's Danny Luttrell 1-0 in the final.

Onufer was 4-0 on the day at 174 pounds, his first three wins by pin. He then cruised to a 10-4 finals victory over teammate Alex Rieder.

Rieder went 2-1 at the 174 pound level and earned his finals match-up against Onufer by pinning Shawn Kuhlman of Fort Hays State in the semi-finals.

LeBlanc handled everyone else in the 184 pound division en route to a 3-0 record. He had one pin, one technical fall and beat Tyler Gonzalez of Fort Hays State, 14-4 by major decision in the final.

Brock Smith, a transfer to the UW team from Chadron State who is also a redshirt freshman, took second place at 157 pounds. Smith had a 3-1 record and recorded a win by fall and one by major decision.

Also wrestling at 157 was Cowboy freshman Eric Jones. Jones placed third with a mark of 4-1, including three victories by fall.

Wyoming's other third place finish came from Laramie native Michael Poulos, a freshman. Poulos competed at 184 pounds, had a 2-1 record and earned a pin in his last match using technique recently taught by the UW coaching staff.

Other Wyoming results included: Kasey Garnhart (133), 2-2; Jimmy Eggemeyer (133), 3-2, fourth place; Thrasher Porcher (133), 1-2; Justin Tortora (141), 1-2; Tyler Davis (157), 0-2; Mikah Kadera (157), 2-2; Joey Pierotti (165), 2-2, fourth place.

Davis, Martinez, Onufer, Rieder, Smith and Tortora competed under the Wyoming team name, while the other eight wrestled unattached. Competition was held at Colby Community College.

The full Wyoming team will compete next Saturday, Nov. 8, at the Northwest Wyoming Tournament in Powell, Wyo.