FULLERTON, Calif. Eight Boise State University wrestlers advanced to the semifinal round, and the Broncos have jumped out to a 16 point lead following the first session of the 2009 Pac-10 Conference Championships.

Boise State, the defending league champion, scored 78.5 points during the first session to advance the most wrestlers of any team to the semifinal round. Cal State Bakersfield and Cal State Fullerton each advanced six wrestlers to the next round. Bakersfield is in second place with 62.5 points with Fullerton two points behind in third with 60.5.

Andrew Hochstrasser and Brent Chriswell highlighted Boise State’s quarterfinal victories with each recording a pin over their opponent. At 133 pounds, Hochstrasser pined David Prado of Arizona State at the 3:50 mark of their match, while Chriswell posted a pin at the 4:19 mark of his 197 pound match against Bo Lukehart of Cal Poly.

Hochstrasser will next face Fijia Novachkov of Cal Poly, while Chriswell will wrestle John Drake of Cal State Fullerton.

Kirk Smith, ranked No. 4 nationally at 184 pounds opened his league tournament with a 20-4 technical fall over Brady Garner of Portland State in a first round match. He advanced to the semifinals with a 9-1 major decision over Tim Hawkins of Cal State Fullerton. Smith takes on Jake Johnson of Stanford in his next match.

The other five Broncos advancing to Sunday (March 1) night’s session include Nate Lee at 174 pounds, Cory Fish at 141 pounds, Adam Hall at 157 pounds, Tyler Sherfey at 165 pounds and Jason Chamberlain at 149 pounds.

Lee, the defending champion at 174 pounds, recorded a 10-8 decision over Ryan DesRoches of Cal Poly. He will next wrestle Todd Noel of Cal State Fullerton.

Fish, who was the defending Pac-10 Champion at 133 pounds before moving up a weight class this year to 141 pounds, advanced to the semifinals with a 4-2 win over Garrett Drucker of Oregon State. Fish will take on Elijha Nacita of Cal State Bakersfield in the next round.

Hall was an 11-4 winner over Tejovan Edwards of Arizona State in the quarterfinals. He faces Jonathan Brascetta of Oregon State in the semifinals.

Sherfey, one of just two seniors (the other is Fish) in the Bronco lineup, advanced in the 165 pound weight class with a 9-2 decision over Joel Shaw of Cal Poly. He next opponent is Keegan Davis of Oregon State.

A true freshman for the Broncos, Chamberlain won both of his first matches in a Pac-10 Tournament. In the first round he recorded a pin over Calvin Miller of Cal State Bakersfield at the 3:48 mark of his 149 pound match, before posting an 8-2 decision over Vincente Varela of Arizona State. He will next take on Teddy Astorga of Cal State Fullerton.

The only Broncos not to advance to the semifinals were Brian Owen at 125 pounds and Sam Zylstra at heavyweight, who both lost in the quarterfinals. Both are now in the consolation bracket.

Session two of this year’s championships starts at 6:00 p.m. (PT) and will feature the 10 semifinal matches, plus first round action in the consolation bracket. The consolation semifinals will begin at 3:00 p.m. (PT) on Monday (March 2), with the championship and consolation finals beginning at 7:00 p.m. (PT) on the Cal State Fullerton campus.

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