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USA Wrestling’s fight to keep sport in Olympics goes Coastal
A group of American wrestlers will take on teams from Russia and Iran, May 15 and 19, from opposite ends of the nation as part of the “Beat the Street” events in New York City and Los Angeles.
But organizers of these two events are also hoping the executive board of the International Olympic Committee will be taking notice of the events — which unite countries with politically-opposite goals — as the international wrestling community fights to keep its sport in the Olympics past the 2016 Games in Rio.
Both events are also part of World Wrestling Month, declared by the international wrestling federation (FILA).
The following is a breakdown of each event, based on releases from USA Wrestling:
“Rumble on the Rails” in New York City, May 15
Three of the world’s top powers, Iran, the United States and Russia will come together in solidarity in this historic wrestling event. The competition will be held alongside the annual Beat the Streets Awards Gala, which will be held following the competition at Bryant Park Grill. A ticket will be required for both the competition and the Gala.
There will be two dual meets as part of this spectacular event. First, the USA will battle Iran in men’s freestyle wrestling at 3:30 p.m. Later, the USA takes on Russia in a match featuring all three Olympic styles at 6:00 p.m.
In the men’s freestyle dual against Iran, the team is led by 2009 World bronze medalist and 2012 Olympian Tervel Dlagnev at 120 kg/264.5 lbs. Past U.S. World Team members competing against Iran are Obe Blanc at 55 kg/121 lbs., Reece Humphrey at 60 kg/132 lbs. and J.D. Bergman at 96 kg/211.5 lbs.
Rounding out the U.S. line-up is college wrestling superstar Kyle Dake at 74 kg/163 lbs. Recently named the 2013 Dan Hodge Trophy winner, Dake became the first wrestler to win four NCAA Div. I titles in four different weight classes, competing for Cornell. He was also fourth at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials.
The men’s freestyle team against Russia is also high powered, led by 2012 Olympic champion and 2011 World champion Jordan Burroughs at 74 kg/163 lbs. and 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Coleman Scott at 60 kg/132 lbs. Burroughs, who won his third U.S. Open title this year, has a 52-0 record on the Senior level in freestyle.
Also on the team is 2010 U.S. World Team member Brent Metcalf at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. The other two competitors are top college stars, two-time NCAA champion Logan Stieber at 60 kg/132 lbs. and NCAA champion David Taylor at 74 kg/163 lbs. Stieber is a past Junior World silver medalist.
Those who wish to see this event or to participate in the Awards Gala must purchase a ticket in advance at www.beat-the-streets.org.
“UNITED 4 WRESTLING” at Los Angeles, May 19
At the friendly dual meet in Los Angeles, both the USA and Iranian line-ups are filled with past Olympic and World Championship medalists, making this truly a match featuring many of the world’s best wrestlers.
The United States team in Los Angeles is led by a pair of 2012 Olympic medalists, Olympic champion Jordan Burroughs at 74 kg/163 lbs. and Olympic bronze medalist Coleman Scott at 60 kg/132 lbs.
Two other 2012 Olympians are on the U.S. roster: Tervel Dlagnev at 120 kg/264.5 lbs. and Sam Hazewinkel at 55 kg/121 lbs. Dlagnev was a 2009 World silver medalist, and placed fifth at both the 2012 Olympics and the 2011 World Championships. He is a past University World champion. Hazewinkel was one of the nation’s best Greco-Roman wrestlers before he made the switch to freestyle in 2009. His father and his uncle were two-time Olympians.
The other three U.S. athletes were runners-up at the recent U.S. Open: Jordan Oliver at 66 kg/145.5 lbs., Clayton Foster at 84 kg/185 lbs. and Chris Pendleton at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. All three were college stars at national power Oklahoma State, with Oliver and Pendleton both winning two NCAA titles and Foster placing second at the NCAAs. Pendleton is a native Californian, having wrestled for Lemoore High School in Lemoore, Calif., where he was a 2000 California high school state champion.
Some of these match-ups are classic showdowns. The match at 120 kg/264.5 lbs. between Dlagnev and Ghasemi is a rematch of the 2012 Olympic bronze-medal match, won by Ghasemi. Two of the other matches feature battles between 2012 Olympians: Hazewinkel vs. Rahimi at 55 kg/121 lbs. and Scott vs. Esmailpour at 60 kg/132 lbs. Every match features two talented international wrestlers, and each of the competitors is capable of giving the fans a tremendous display of wrestling.
Tickets for “United 4 Wrestling” are available at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, online at www.ticketmaster.com, and by phone at 1-800-745-3000. The LA Sports Arena box office hours are weekdays from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
THE RUMBLE ON THE RAILS”
USA VS. IRAN VS. RUSSIA
At Grand Central Terminal, New York, N.Y., May 15
3:30 p.m. – USA vs. Iran, at Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal
5:00 p.m. – Beat the Streets youth exhibition matches at Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal
6:00 p.m. – USA vs. Russia at Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal
8:00 p.m. – Beat the Streets Awards Gala at Bryant Park Grill
U.S. men’s freestyle roster against Iran
55 kg/121 lbs. – Obe Blanc, Stillwater, Okla. (Titan Mercury WC/Cowboy-Titan Mercury RTC)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Reece Humphrey, Columbus, Ohio (New York AC/Ohio RTC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Kellen Russell, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC/Michigan RTC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Kyle Dake, Ithaca, N.Y. (New York AC/Finger Lakes WC)
84 kg/185 lbs. – Keith Gavin, Columbus, Ohio (Titan Mercury WC/Ohio RTC)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – J.D. Bergman, Columbus, Ohio (New York AC/Ohio RTC)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Tervel Dlagnev, Columbus, Ohio (Sunkist Kids/Ohio RTC)
U.S. men’s freestyle roster against Russia
60 kg/132 lbs. – Coleman Scott, Stillwater, Okla. (Titan Mercury WC/Cowboy-Titan Mercury RTC)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Logan Stieber, Monroeville, Ohio (New York AC/Ohio RTC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Brent Metcalf, Iowa City, Iowa (New York AC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Jordan Burroughs, Lincoln, Neb. (Sunkist Kids/Nebraska RTC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – David Taylor, St. Paris, Ohio (Nittany Lion WC)
U.S. Greco-Roman roster against Russia
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Kendrick Sanders, Homestead, Fla. (New York AC/USOEC)
74 kg /163 lbs. – Ben Provisor, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
84 kg/185 lbs. – Jordan Holm, Minneapolis, Minn. (Minnesota Storm)
U.S. women’s freestyle roster against Russia
55 kg/121 lbs. – Helen Maroulis, Rockville, Md. (New York AC)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Opan Sat
60 kg/132 lbs. – Artas Sanaa
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Soslan Ramonov
74 kg/163 lbs. – Rasul Dzhukaev
74 kg/163 lbs. – Saba Khubetzhty
66 kg/145.5 lbs – Asker Orshokdugov
74 kg/163 lbs. – Ambako Vachadze
84 kg/185 lbs. – Evgeni Saleev
55 kg/121 lbs. – Irina Kisel
55 kg/121 lbs. – Hassan Rahimi
60 kg/132 lbs. – Masoud Esmailpour Jouybari
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Mehdi Taghavi Kermani
74 kg/163 lbs. – Hassan Tahmasebi
84 kg/185 lbs. – Ehsan Lashgari
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Hamed Tatari
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Komeil Ghasemi
“UNITED 4 WRESTLING” USA VS. IRAN DUAL SCHEDULE
At Los Angeles, May 19
2 p.m. – USA vs. Iran, Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena
MATCH-UPS FOR THE USA VS. IRAN DUAL MEET ON MAY 19
55 kg/121 lbs. – Sam Hazewinkel (USA) vs. Hassan Rahimi (Iran)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Coleman Scott (USA) vs. Masoud Esmailpour Jouybari (Iran)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Jordan Oliver (USA) vs. Mehdi Taghavi Kermani (Iran)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Jordan Burroughs (USA) vs. Hassan Tahmasebi (Iran)
84 kg/185 lbs. – Clayton Foster (USA) vs. Ehsan Lashgari (Iran)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Chris Pendleton (USA) vs. Hamed Tatari (Iran)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Tervel Dlagnev (USA) vs. Komeil Ghasemi (Iran)