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NCAA Wrestling : Iowa St. Halts Iowa's String of Titles at Nine

March 22, 1987|Associated Press

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Iowa State, keyed by Bill Kelly's upset victory at 126 pounds, ended archrival Iowa's nine-year title reign Saturday by winning the NCAA Division I wrestling championship.

Four Cyclones won individual titles--two of them over defending champions from Iowa--as Iowa failed to become the first team in college sports history to win 10 consecutive national titles.

"I'm happy for us, it's great, but I feel sad for (Iowa) because they could have set the record," said Jim Gibbons, Iowa State's 27-year-old coach.

Iowa State finished with 133 points to 108 for Iowa.

"Iowa State wrestled well, give them a lot of credit. They peaked at the right time," Iowa Coach Dan Gable said. "And, we've got nine titles and they've got one. There was only team that could beat us and they did."

The Cyclones won all but one of their five title matches, with Kelly clinching the team title when he pinned returning champion Brad Penrith of Iowa with 29 seconds remaining.

"I didn't know my pin clinched it. One of our assistant coaches told me before our match that we had already clinched it," Kelly said. "It would have put a lot more pressure on me if I'd known I had to win."

With the score tied, 2-2, Kelly (28-2-4) caught Penrith (14-3) in a cradle hold he calls the spradle, and the referee slapped the mat 10 seconds later, bringing Iowa's title streak to a halt.

Iowa State's unbeaten sophomore, Tim Krieger, followed Kelly's victory by edging defending 150-pound champion Jim Heffernan of Iowa, 2-1, in overtime. The Cyclones also got championships from Stewart Carter at 158 pounds and sophomore Eric Volcker at 190.

Iowa's champions were Royce Alger, a 10-4 winner over Iowa State's Kevin Jackson at 167, and 177-pounder Rico Chiapparelli, a 6-2 winner over top-seeded and previously unbeaten Darryl Pope (44-1) of Cal State Bakersfield.

John Smith (43-1) of Oklahoma State was voted the tournament's outstanding wrestler after hammering Gil Sanchez of Nebraska, 18-4, at 134 pounds. Smith didn't have a close match in the three-day tournament and said, "Now my goal is to come back and win again next year."

Ricky Bonomo of Bloomsburg University won his third consecutive 118-pound title, beating sophomore Jim Martin of Penn State, 8-4.

Penn State didn't have a champion but finished third in the team standings with 97 3/4 points as eight Nittany Lions finished in the top eight at their weights.

Top-seeded Pete Yozzo, who suffered a midseason foot injury, pinned Pat Santoro of Pittsburgh at 142. Carlton Haselrig, Pittsburgh Johnstown's heavyweight, scored a takedown in the final five seconds to edge Edinboro's Dean Hall, 4-2. Hall is coached by current world champion Bruce Baumgartner.

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