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Old 07-23-2011
Rob Sherrill Rob Sherrill is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Moody doubles, Garelli repeats, Richards wins

Illinois completed one of its most successful Cadet and Junior Nationals weeks ever, taking home three individual titles in the Junior freestyle meet, which concluded Saturday at the FargoDome.

Nkosi Moody (98) became one of four double Junior National champions, Matt Garelli (105) won the Junior freestyle for the second year in a row and Zane Richards (130), a two-time Cadet National Greco-Roman champion, added a Junior freestyle title to his collection.

As for the team race...well, there really wasn't one. Illinois was within range of the century mark with a few more wins. We didn't quite get there, but we did manage to eke out a 38-point victory over runnerup Iowa. So, for the second consecutive year, Illinois staked its claim to three-fourths of the Wells Fargo team trophy.

The final team Top 10:

1. ILLINOIS, 93
2. Iowa, 55
3. Wisconsin, 32
4. Ohio, 30
5. California, 29
6. (tie) Michigan and Minnesota, 27
8. Florida, 26
9. Virginia, 24
10. New York, 22


******

Pennsylvania? All the Keystoners could muster were three All-Americans - two sixths and an eighth - for a measly 7 points to share 21st place with Hawaii. That's right...they didn't even crack the top 20!

Moody beat Tommy Pawelski 6-3, 5-1 to open the finals at 98 and Garelli, who won at 98 last year, scored the winning takedown on a pushout with 10 seconds left in the third period in a 3-3, 7-0, 3-3 victory over Greco-Roman champion Johnson Mai of California in a battle of state champions.

Garelli took a 2-0 lead in the third period on a pushout and another takedown. Mai used takedowns on an ankle pick and a duck-under, followed by a one-point lace, for a 3-2 lead with 25 seconds remaining befoer Garelli rallied for the win.

After giving up the first takedown, Richards scored twice for a 2-1 first-period victory. He then took Brandon Jeske of Virginia down twice more, on a double-leg on the edge and a low single to a double, to seal the deal in the second period, 2-0. Richards also beat Jeske in the Cadet Greco-Roman finals a year ago.

Unfortunately, that's where the good news ended, at least in the finals. Brian Murphy (145) and Edwin Cooper (152) lost despite winning the first period in each of their matches. Murphy was caught by two-time New York champion Brian Realbuto and pinned with one second left in the second period. Cooper beat three-time Oregon champion Zac Brunson 4-0 in the first period, then lost the second period 1-0 and was teched in the third, 6-0.

Jahwon Akui (189), also trying for a double title, was dominated by Devin Peterson of Wisconsin in a battle of Greco-Roman champions. Peterson won the first period 7-0 and pinned Akui at the second-period buzzer.

Nevertheless, Illinois' seven finalists were a national best - by a lot. So were our 20 All-Americans, a record for any of the four tournaments.

Alex Dieringer joined Peterson as double champions from Wisconsin. He beat future Oklahoma State teammate Zach Skates of Oklahoma 4-0, 4-0 in the 160-pound final and was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler. All three of Dieringer's national freestyle titles - one Cadet and two Junior - came after moving up a weight from Greco-Roman.

Ben Whitford (135) of Michigan - you remember him - was the fourth double Junior champion. That also happened to be the only weight class in which Illinois did not have an All-American.

The final honor roll of Junior freestyle All-Americans:

98 - Nkosi Moody, DOUBLE CHAMPION; Tommy Pawelski, 2nd
105 - Matt Garelli, CHAMPION
112 - Jim Panozzo, 6th
119 - Jered Cortez, 6th
125 - Zach Synon, 8th
130 - Zane Richards, CHAMPION
140 - Angelo Silvestro, 3rd
145 - Brian Murphy, 2nd
152 - Edwin Cooper, 2nd
160 - Spartacus Chino, 6th; Dylan Reel, 8th
171 - Jack Dechow, 6th
189 - Jahwon Akui, 2nd; Sam Brooks, 4th; Gage Harrah, 7th
215 - Michael Sojka, 4th; Josh Marchok, 5th; Brad Johnson, 8th
285 - Austin Marsden, 5th

Great job, everyone...what a week!

Last edited by Rob Sherrill; 07-24-2011 at 08:50 PM.
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