COLUMBUS, Ohio – Colt Sponseller, a senior captain on the Ohio State wrestling team, concluded his Buckeye career Saturday morning with a fourth-place finish at the 2011 NCAA Championships at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pa.
Sponseller (165), who guaranteed his place on the podium Friday afternoon with a 3-1 quarterfinal win vs. No. 4 Josh Asper of Maryland, finishes the season with a 25-7 record. In four seasons as a Buckeye, Sponseller amassed a 105-24 mark.
In the third-place matchup, the Buckeye from Glenmont, Ohio, dropped a 6-4 decision to No. 2 seed Andrew Howe of Wisconsin. Trailing, 5-1, entering the third period, Sponseller attempted to rally when he scored an escape and takedown in succession to make the score 5-4. However, a final escape by Howe ensured him the victory.
In the consolation semifinal vs. seventh-seed Shane Onufer of Wyoming, Sponseller earned back points in the second period to take a 2-0 lead. However, Onufer answered with a takedown in the third to tie the score, but Sponseller’s escape and riding time of 1:50 lifted him to the win.
A three-time NCAA championships qualifier (2009, 2010, 2011), Sponseller was the 2010 and 2011 Big Ten Championships runner-up at 165 pounds. Academically, Sponseller was a 2008 NWCA Freshman All-Academic Team selection, 2010 NWCA All-Academic Team member, Academic All-Big Ten and two-time Ohio State Scholar Athlete.
2011 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships
March 19, 2011
Wells Fargo Center
No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) mdec. Chad Porter (Liberty), 11-3
No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) dec. Eren Civan (Columbia), 7-3
No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) dec. No. 4 Josh Asper (Maryland), 3-1
No. 1 Jordan Burroughs (Nebraska) mdec. No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State), 14-6
No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) dec. No. 7 Shane Onufer (Wyoming), 4-2
No. 2 Andrew Howe (Wisconsin) dec. No. 5 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State), 6-4