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Why Cael Sanderson Was Ejected From World Team Trials

The third and final match of the series between J'Den Cox and David Taylor was everything we wanted it to be and more: incredible action, great technique, drama, injuries and star power.

After the match though, things got heated on the Nittany Lion side. As you can see in the video above (courtesy of Chris Cuellar and the Des Moines Register), Taylor runs over to his corner, asking them to throw the challenge brick.

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Then, Cael Sanderson throws the brick at the referee, which Taylor eventually kicks across the mat. Cael would go on to also throw a towel at the official, at which point he got ejected. Finally, he picks up a chair and flips it on to the mat.

After an incredible NCAA tournament that ended with five champs, Penn State turned their energy and attention toward the World Team Trials. Heading into Lincoln, they had guys at four weights who were realistic threats to make the world team, but the Taylor loss clearly left a sour taste in their mouths.

Why Cael Was Furious

Taylor trailed 3-0 at the break, and immediately came out firing in the second period. His takedown 11 seconds in wound up producing an incredible sequence of events.

Cox was clearly injured in the exchange, the extent of which is still not known. After two minutes and forty seconds of deliberation with the trainer and his coach Mike Eierman, Cox decided to continue wrestling.

With a little over two minutes remaining (after Cox glided across the mat on his own sweat), Taylor forced a step out to take the lead on criteria. It was the final point Taylor would score in the match. It seems as though this is where Taylor and his coaches wanted a caution-and-two called, or for the match to be stopped for the sweat to be wiped off the mat.  


Twenty seconds later, Cox forced a step out to give him a 4-3 lead. The final point of the match came when Taylor tries to shoot Cox out, J'Den dances out of the zone and Taylor swings out of bounds on his knees. The coaches did not throw the brick at this point.

In the final 64 seconds, Taylor level changes several times, but is only in on Cox's knee for a second. Cox takes three shots and grabs Taylor's wrist right near the end of the match.  That Cox was not hit for caution and 2 or put on the shot clock for avoiding action at any point in the 2nd period is what had Sanderson and Taylor so upset.  With just under 30 seconds to go, J'den was warned for fleeing the hold, but the caution and 2 never came afterwards. The frustration of how the match was officiated late lead Taylor and Cael to have uncharacteristic outbursts where Cael threw items at the mat official Sammy Julian, and a chair onto the mat.

After the match, Taylor can be seen pointing and yelling at someone off camera, in the direction of head men's freestyle coach Bill Zadick.

Watch the controversial second period below.


Taylor offered his thoughts of the weekend on his instagram earlier today.

Watch The Series: J'Den Cox vs David Taylor Match 1 | J'Den Cox vs David Taylor Match 2 | J'Den Cox vs David Taylor Match 3
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