Derek Moore became the first Aggie wrestler to earn All-American status with his advancement to the semifinals. (Randy Martin)
March 16, 2007
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. - Derek Moore made UC Davis wrestling history on Friday morning during the NCAA Division I Championships at the Palace of Auburn Hills as he defeated Michael Keefe of Tennessee-Chattanooga to become the first Aggie to ever advance to the semifinals and earn All-America honors. Ken Cook and Dustin Noack each won their opening matches, but were eliminated with losses in the 5th round of wrestlebacks.
With the three victories on the day, the Aggies sit 25th overall with a school-record total of 16.5 points, which more than doubles last year's total of seven. Minnesota leads overall with 66 points.
"It's a relief to finally achieve my goal of becoming an All-American," said Moore. "I'm excited to be the first All-American from UC Davis, but I know there's more to come from these younger guys coming up in the program. I've just set the bar a little higher, which gives the next guys something to work towards. I still have two more matches to achieve the ultimate goal."
"It's good for him because he's come so close in years past and he's really deserving of it," commented head coach Lennie Zalesky on the All-America honors. "I'm proud of him for being able to come back from injuries in his senior year to achieve this."
Moore, whose match was televised live on ESPNU, held a 5-0 lead early in the third period behind two takedowns and an escape. Keefe narrowed the gap with two takedowns in the final period, but Moore scored two more escapes and a takedown with under three second remaining to secure the win, 10-4. Moore also earned the extra point with over three minutes of riding time.
Moore returns tonight to face No. 3 seed Nathan Morgan of Oklahoma State in the semifinals for the chance to advance to the championship match. Moore defeated then-No. 4 Morgan in the season-opening dual in Stillwater, Okla., 5-2.
Noack pulled off his third consecutive victory at the tournament with a 5-4 decision over Jason Kiessling of Maryland in sudden victory overtime. In a defensive battle, Kiessling led 1-0 heading into the final period. Noack took a brief lead with a reversal before Kiessling tied it up at 2-2 with an escape. In the sudden victory, Noack scored another reverse with under 15 seconds remaining to pull off the win.
Noack finished his sophomore season later in the day with a 3-2 loss to Roger Smith-Bergsrud of Illinois. Noack's opponent scored all three of his points in the first period with a takedown and an escape and held off Noack to advance. Noack finishes the season with three national tournament victories and 23 overall wins.
Cook earned a dominant 16-3 major decision over Lloyd Rogers of Tennessee-Chattanooga in his first match. After a takedown in the first period, Cook converted a five-point move in the second period as he took down Rogers and then rolled him to earn the three-point nearfall. Two more takedowns and another three-point nearfall in the final period earned Cook the major decision.
Cook was eliminated later in they day with a 7-2 loss to No. 8 Matthew Stolpinski of Navy. After a scoreless opening period, Stolpinski scored a takedown in the second period and two more in the third to earn the win. Cook finished his final season as an Aggie with two victories at the national tournament and 26 overall wins.
Marcos Orozco concluded his season in the opening match of the day as he fell to No. 11 seed David Tomasette of Hofstra in a 14-0 major decision. Overall, Orozco finished with 18 wins this season while earning his first national tournament victory.
NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, Morning Rounds
Palace of Auburn Hills, March 16, 2007
Marcos Orozco (125) - lost maj. dec. No. 11 David Tomeasette (Hofstra), 14-0
No. 2 Derek Moore (141) - won dec. Michael Keefe (Chat), 10-4
Dustin Noack (165) - won dec. Jason Kiessling (Maryland), 4-2 SV; lost dec. Roger Smith-Bergsrud (Ill.), 3-2
No. 6 Ken Cook (174) - won maj. dec. Lloyd Rogers (Chat), 16-3; lost dec. No. 8 Matt Stoplinski (Navy), 7-2
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