Air Force Wraps Up Competition at Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational
Dec. 6, 2008
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Junior Tyler French (Malta, Mont.) led a group of four Air Force wrestlers competing at the 27th-annual Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational, held Dec. 5-6. The invitational, one of the most premier wrestling events at the collegiate level, features athletes from 49 schools around the nation.
French went 3-2 on the weekend, turning in the best performance for the Falcons, just one win away from finishing as a placewinner. French opened with three straight victories--a 6-4 decision over Purdue's Nick Corpe, a fall over Zlad Kharbush of Brown in a time of 3:42 and an 11-10 victory over Celic Bell of North Idaho. French's first loss of the weekend came Friday evening in a fall to fifth-seeded Trevor Perry of Indiana. Meanwhile, French concluded competition Saturday morning with an 18-3 loss to Shane Riccio of Bucknell.
Stephen Crozier (Monona, Iowa), wrestling at 165 pounds, put together a 2-2 record on Friday. Crozier dropped his first bout, 8-3, to ninth-seed Andrew Howe of Wisconsin, before picking up a 6-0 victory over conference rival Adam Aho of North Dakota State in the consolation bracket. The senior captain then registered a 13-2 major decision over Embry-Riddle's Eli Arismendez before ending his weekend with a 12-3 loss to Minnesota's Scott Glasser.
Also picking up a win for the Falcons was sophomore Derek Gillespie (Chesapeake, Va.). The 133-pounder opened strong, registering a fall of Dakota Wesleyan's Malik Stewart in a time of 1:56. However, Gillespie dropped a pair of tech falls in his next two bouts--22-7 to 10th-seed Zac Stevens of Michigan and 18-3 to San Francisco State's Naveed Bagheri--to finish the weekend at 1-2. Meanwhile, also competing for the Falcons at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational was sophomore Joseph Stafford (Loomis, Calif.), who went 0-2 in the 157-pound weight class.
Another group of Falcons is competing today at the FHSU-Bob Smith Open in Hays, Kan., where action will conclude this evening.