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UVU wrestling: Six UVU wrestlers named all-conference

By James Warnick

For the Deseret News

Published: Monday, March 17 2014 8:00 p.m. MDT

Utah Valley senior Avery Garner (right) grapples his opponent. He was named first team all-conference for the Wolverines.

Linsey Craig, UVU Athletics

Enlarge photo»

The Western Wrestling Conference announced its All-Conference teams for the 2013-14 season on Monday and six Utah Valley University wrestlers made the cut. Individuals earned spots on the respective teams with their finishes at the 2014 NCAA West Regional/WWC Championships on March 8 in Orem, Utah.

Senior Avery Garner (141 pounds) was named to the first team, while junior Adam Fager (heavyweight) was named to the second team and sophomores Jade Rauser (125), Chasen Tolbert (133) and Derek Thomas (197), and senior Curtis Abner Cook (165) were also honored as they made the third team.

The all-conference honor was Garner's third of his career while Fager, Tolbert and Cook were all recognized for the second time. Rauser and Thomas received their first-ever all-conference accolades.

Teamwise, North Dakota State and Wyoming led the way with three first team honorees apiece while the South Dakota State had two. Overall, NDSU led the way with seven of its wrestlers being named all-conference. Air Force, Utah Valley and Wyoming were next as they all had six of their wrestlers make the cut. Each WWC school had at least one individual named all-conference.

The Western Wrestling Conference is comprised of six schools including the Air Force Academy, North Dakota State, Northern Colorado, South Dakota State, Utah Valley and Wyoming.

Garner, Fager, Rauser and Cook will head to the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships later this week. The tournament will run Thursday through Saturday at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Okla.

First team All-WWC

125: Tyler Cox (WYO), Jr., Gillette, Wyo. (Campbell County HS)*

133: Greg Rinker (AFA), Sr., Northampton, Pa. (Northampton HS)*

141: Avery Garner (UVU), Sr., Boise, Idaho (Centennial HS)**

149: Alex Kocer (SDSU), RFr., Wagner, S.D. (Wagner HS)

157: Cody Pack (SDSU), Jr., Quincy, Calif. (Quincy HS)*

165: Steven Monk (NDSU), Sr., Wausau, Wis. (Wausau West HS)***

174: Hayden Zillmer (NDSU), So., Crosby, Minn. (Crosby Ironton HS)

184: Benjamin Stroh (WYO), RFr., Harlem, Mont. (Chinook HS)

197: Shane Woods (WYO), Jr., Tuttle, Okla. (Tuttle HS)*

285: Evan Knutson (NDSU), Jr., Wausau, Wis. (Wausau West HS)**

Second All-WWC

125: Josh Martinez (AFA), So., Colorado Springs, Colo. (Pine Creek HS)*

133: Justin LaValle (NDSU), Sr., West Fargo, N.D. (West Fargo HS)

141: Cole Mendenhall (WYO), RFr., Great Falls, Mont. (Great Falls HS)

149: Natrelle Demison (AFA), Fr., Bakersfield, Calif. (Bakersfield HS)

157: Andy McCulley (WYO), Jr., Rock Springs, Wyo. (Rock Springs HS)*

165: Dakota Friesth (WYO), Jr., Adel, Iowa (Adel-DeSota-Minburn)*

174: John Nething II (SDSU), Jr., Paynesville, Minn. (New London-Spicer HS)

184: Kurtis Julson (NDSU), Jr., Inner Grove Heights, Minn. (Simley HS)*

197: Tyler Lehmann (NDSU), RFr., Fargo, N.D. (West Fargo HS)

285: Adam Fager (UVU), Jr., Layton, Utah (Layton HS)*

Third team All-WWC

125: Jade Rauser (UVU), So., Townsend, Mont. (Broadwater HS)

133: Chasen Tolbert (UVU), So., Delta, Utah (Delta HS)*

141: Clay Cathey (NDSU), RFr., Billings, Mont. (Skyview HS)

149: Tyler Diamond (NDSU), Sr., Oroville, Calif. (Oroville HS)

157: Josh Kreimier (AFA), Sr., Fort Collins, Colo. (Loveland HS)**

165: Curtis Abner Cook (UVU), Sr., Pocatello, Idaho (Pocatello HS)*

174: Konner Witt (AFA), So., Oak Harbor, Ohio (Oak Harbor HS)

184: Devin HIghtower (AFA), Sr., Colorado Springs, Colo. (Widefield HS)*

197: Derek Thomas (UVU), So., Layton, Utah (Layton HS)

285: Henry Chirino (UNC), Jr., Brandon, Fla. (Brandon HS)

* Denotes two-time all-conference honoree

** Denotes three-time all-conference honoree

*** Denotes four-time all-conference honoree

James Warnick is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information about Wolverine athletics, visit www.WolverineGreen.com.

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