Wrestling to host second Pac-10 foe

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Friday, November 14, 2008
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The ASU wrestling team (1-0,1-0 Pac-10) looks to add to its early season success Friday night as it hosts Portland State at Phoenix Maryvale High School.

The Sun Devils are expected to start a similar lineup that earned them a 26-12 victory in their season opener last Saturday against UC Davis.

There are two changes to the lineup worth noting, however.

Sophomore Jerrad Trulson (157 pound weight-class) is expected to make his first start of the season in lieu of freshman Michael Swigart, who lost by decision last Saturday.

“I’m real excited,” Trulson said after practice Wednesday. “We’ve been training since August and it’s exciting to see where you’re at and what you’ve learned. It’s good to get out there and wrestle live.”

Coach Thom Ortiz said he expects Trulson and Swigart to wrestle-off sometime next week to determine who will take the starting spot against No. 1 Iowa on Nov. 21.

“We’ve stayed really good through it because we know that one of us will end up wrestling,” Trulson said of the impending battle with his teammate. “You are a team so you want to push your partner as hard as you can. Because the better I make him, the better of a person I have to wrestle.”

The other notable change will be in 133-pound weight class after sophomore Orlando Jimenez suffered an injury this week. Ortiz said junior Angel Alegre, who usually wrestles at 125 pounds, would move up a class to replace Jimenez.

ASU is looking to win its 12th consecutive meet against PSU. Last year, the Sun Devils handed their Pac-10 Conference foe a convincing 45-6 defeat in Portland, Ore.

Friday’s meet opens the season for the Vikings, which went 1-15 in dual meets last year, and finished dead last in the Pac-10 standings.

“I treat every opponent the same,” junior Jake Cranford said. “We’re not going to taper down any bit.”

Last week, Cranford secured a one-point decision over UC Davis’ John Clark of and is looking to improve.

“This week, we’ve had a real tough week,” he said. “We picked up the intensity starting on Monday and everyone’s really been pushing it. We’re not going to overlook them.”

Reach the reporter at joshua.spivack@asu.edu.