Aggie Wrestlers Back In Action At Las Vegas Invite

Derek Moore enters this weekend's invite ranked No. 2 in 141-pound division.  (Randy Martin)
Derek Moore enters this weekend's invite ranked No. 2 in 141-pound division. (Randy Martin)

Nov. 29, 2006

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Friday, Dec. 1 - at Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational , All Day
Saturday, Dec. 2 - at Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational , All Day

No Competition

The Aggies have seen early successes in their first two competitions of the 2006-07 season. In the season-opening meet against perennial power Oklahoma State, Derek Moore picked up a 5-2 upset over then-No. 4 Nathan Morgan in the 141-pound bout to earn one of three UC Davis wins in a 22-9 loss to the then-No. 2 Cowboys, who are now the No. 1-ranked team in the country. Tyler Bernacchi at 184 and Eliot Kelly at 197 also won their bouts.

Moore continued to perform well for the Aggies as he captured the 141-pound title at the Cal Open in Fullerton the following week with a 1-0 decision over Iowa State's Mitch Mueller in the championship bout. Marcos Orozco and Omar Gaitan enjoyed second-place finishes at 125 and 133, respectively. The Aggie placewinners were rounded out by Kelly's third-place finish and fourth-place showings by Jeff Prentice at 174 and Broc Maffia at 285.

Moore's solid performances over the past two meets have catapulted him to a career-high No. 2 in the USA Today/Intermat/NWCA Division I rankings. Senior Ken Cook is ranked No. 6 in the 174-pound class in the same rankings.

UC Davis will head to Las Vegas this Friday and Saturday to compete in the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. Held at the Star of the Desert Arena adjacent to Buffalo Bill's Hotel, the invite features almost 50 teams, including No. 2 Missouri, No. 8 Michigan and several other top-25 teams.

The Aggies will compete in two other events before taking off a couple weeks for the holiday season.

HEAD COACH Lennie Zalesky
On Past Week of Training: "We just got back from our holiday break and we're getting back into it. We've been isolating mainly on our technique and the areas that we still need to work on. We're doing a lot of individual stuff and continuing to maintain our fitness."

On Las Vegas Invite: "This is probably one of the toughest tournaments we wrestle in all year. It's probably as close to the NCAA tournament as you can get. I think historically all we've had is some place-winners and we'll see if we can't crack that. It's a tough tournament. You've got most of the Top-10 teams and some East Coast teams that are tough. There's something like 40 teams there. This is the type of tournament that will get our guys ready for nationals. Everybody should win matches this weekend. To get in that top-eight is going to take some good runs even for our top guys. We'll see people here we won't typically see. This is the tournament where all the small errors show up and we'll see where were at. We'll also see some of the good things that we can do. So, overall it's a good tournament."