Two Vikings advance to NCAA Championships

Although Portland State has two grapplers who automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships, the Pac-10 Championships were not the top performance the wrestlers wanted. Senior Jeremy Wilson, the No. 1 seed, was upset in a 4-3 overtime loss, and finished runner-up. Junior Randy Davidson, unseeded, placed fourth and will make his first appearance at the NCAA’s.

“It was okay,” coach Marlin Grahn said of the tournament. “All the guys know they can do better, none of them were satisfied.”

Among Portland State’s other top wrestlers was Quinn Collett, who was seeded fourth at 174 pounds. Collett put both of his opponents away the first day. He scored a major 21-7 decision over Bryan Travers of Cal State Bakersfield and topped Fullerton’s Shawn Henebry, 5-4. Unsightly lucky was in store the second day for Collett, as his chance to qualify for the NCAA’s was ended with an injury. Collett dislocated his elbow in his 174 pound championship semi-finals match with Oregon State’s Nathan Coy.

The Vikings unseeded 197 pounder, Davidson had a solid tournament winning two of four matches. The junior lost his first match to the No. 2 seed Jason Lovell of Oregon State. The loss put Davidson into the consolation bracket and he fought back from there. He upset the No. 4 seed, Robbie Odell, from Cal State Bakersfield 7-4 and then made work of Oregon’s Jake Leair, 5-4. His fourth and final match was a rematch against Lovell, who edged Davidson 5-2.

“I just couldn’t get over the final step with the guy from Oregon State,” Davidson said. “Overall though I’m pretty happy; I wrestled tough.”

The Vikings top wrestler, at 184 pounds, earned his third straight trip to the NCAA Championships with his second place finish at the Pac-10 Championships. Wilson won his first two matches, defeating UC Davis’s Steffan Weiner and Stanford’s Harold Penson. Wilson’s lost his championship match to Isaac Weber in overtime, 4-3. Late in overtime Wilson was hit with a stalling call and he gave away his win. Wilson improved his record to 34-6 and took the second place on the all-time wins list with 107.

All other PSU’s wrestlers were knocked out of the tournament with early losses. The Vikings placed ninth with 31.5 points. Boise State placed first with 123 team points.

“Jeremy and Randy both know that they can beat the guys who beat them,” Grahn explained. “Jeremy just has to get back on track mentally. We’re going to the NCAA’s with high expectations.”

Wilson and Davidson will travel to Albany, N.Y., for the NCAA’s, March 21-23.