Clackamas Community College’s wrestling team lost 3-44 to Oregon State University Jan. 25 in the Beavers’ territory. The loss was Clackamas’ second of the season after their loss to Northeastern Oklahoma on Jan. 10, which broke the team’s three-year perfect record.
The team came in knowing they were the underdogs to the Division I team, but fought hard throughout the dual.
“What we talked about downstairs before we came up was just go out and fight hard, put on a good show for fans and make it as competitive as we can,” Head Coach Josh Rhoden said. “There are some weights where we knew we were going to be outmatched no matter what we did because they just have better athletes. I think we put on a good show in several ways so I’m pretty proud of some guys’ performances.”
Despite the dual taking place in Corvallis, Clackamas’ fan base traveled well.
“Cougar Country was well represented,” Rhoden said. “It was the loudest it got all night in Gill Coliseum with our win at [197 pounds]. It showed we had a good contingent of people there including athletic director [Jim Martineau] and our dean. It was cool to see everybody out there supporting.”
Joey Daniel was the only one to come out of the dual with a win, successfully staying in position and pushing through despite getting tired, as he described, “I just went in with an open mind and I thought the guy was going to be tough,” Daniel said. “Like always and every match is tougher, but I just went in there [and] I did what I had to do and I came out.”
Even though Daniel was the only official win of the night, Rhoden felt like Clackamas should have had two. The controversy stemmed from the 157-pound match featuring CCC’s Joel Romero and OSU’s Zech Bresser. Romero was disqualified for an illegal slam which Bresser was not able to recover from. In Division I schools have the choice to use replay to review calls but it is up to the host school. OSU is one of the few schools to not use replay, according to Rhoden. With no replay available, referee Tommy Kennedy’s rule of an illegal slam stood.
“We watched it back that night and the next morning I saw Kennedy, who’s a great official, and he asked me, ‘what’d you see’ and I said ‘Bresser’s hand touched first’,” Rhoden said. “In that case he’s trying to recover and that would not be considered an illegal slam. Without being able to break it down like we were in slow-mo Tommy couldn’t have known that in real time.”
Freshman Jason Shaner also had an outstanding match at Oregon State scoring 10 points against OSU’s Kegan Calkins in the 138-pound weight class. Calkins won the match 19-10 but Shaner felt like if things shook out differently it could have been a win for him.
“There was just some calls that could have went my way. There’s a throw for six points that if they wouldn’t have taken it away it would have been my match,” Shaner said. “I expected them to be tough. I didn’t really care though, I just wanted to go out there and fight no matter what”.
The loss to OSU was the Cougars second of the season and dropped their record to 11-2 on the season. Now the attention turns to the West District Championships and expectations are high.
“I think we should win the district, I don’t think that’s in question,” Rhoden said. “The fun thing for our guys to talk about is can we get 10 guys to the [National] Finals. We’ve never done that before.”
Clackamas announced their roster for the West District Championship via Twitter on Monday. The ten wrestlers that will represent CCC areC 125-pounder Zeth Brower, 133-pounder Jason Shaner, 141-pounder Elijah Ozuna, 149-pounder Marty Margolis, 157-pounder Joel Romero, 165-pounder Mason McDaniel, 174-pounder Trajan Hurd, 184-pounder Trevor Senn, 197-pounder Darryl Aiello and 285-pounder Tommy Mommer.
“I always expect to win,” said Senn. “I think I can, I know I can and it’ll be fun.”
The district championships take place this Sunday in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.