The 2022 college wrestling national championships are over … but the great...
May 28 Preview of upcoming Final X: MFS 79k, GR 77k, WFS 62k
• USA’s Wrestling’s most decorated champ is shooting for a seventh World title and will face someone who has overcome personal setbacks collegiately to be reaching his potential at the Senior level.
• A pair of newcomers to the U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program look to represent Greco at 77 kilos.
• 2021 World silver medalist in women’s freestyle proved she is more than a Miracle, but now faces another veteran wrestler with a different last name.
These are three storylines from WIN’s sixth installment of previews for the 2022 Final X matches that will take place June 3 in Stillwater, Okla., and June 8 in New York City.
WIN Magazine will provide a comprehensive look at both the Challenge Tournament and Final X in the next issue of WIN, which will be printed June 16. Click here or call 888-305-0606 to subscribe to WIN.
The 30 wrestlers — 10 each in men’s freestyle, women’s freestyle and Greco-Roman — who eventually win the Final X bouts will be our U.S. World Team for the 2022 UWW World Championships, Sept. 10-18, Belgrade, Serbia.
The following is also a schedule of when the Final X previews will take place. Action begins at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater with Round 1 matches at 2 p.m. (CDT) and Round 2 at 7 p.m., Round 3 bouts, if necessary, will follow after the completion of Round 2. The Final X in NYC will take place in the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden. Round 1 matches begin at 2 p.m. EDT and Round 2 at 6 p.m.
(Please note that 14 World Team Trials Challenge Tourney winners had to win Best-of-3 finals in Coralville, Iowa, before meeting a 2021 World medalist at Final X. The other 16 weights feature wrestlers who only had to win a Challenge semifinal to earn a spot in Final X, in weights where there was no returning World medalist.)
Saturday, May 28
MFS – 79k: Jordan Burroughs (Penn RTC) vs. Chance Marstellar in June 8 Final X in New York City
Burroughs, 33, is the most decorated USA men’s freestyle wrestler since John Smith of the early 1990s. This native of Camden, N.J., has appeared in two Olympics (winning gold in 2012 and later competing in 2016) while also winning five World championships; the last coming last fall at 79 kilos, which earned him an automatic spot in Final X. Burroughs first four World titles came in 2011, ’13, ’15 and ’17 to go along with bronze medals in 2014, ’18 and ’19; all at 74 kilos before losing that weight to Kyle Dake in the 2020 Olympic Trials. Burroughs spent most of his training years in Lincoln, Neb., where he first won two NCAA titles and the 2011 Dan Hodge Trophy before moving to Philadelphia, Pa., where he trains with the Penn RTC.
Marstellar, 26, first emerged as a four-time undefeated Pennsylvania state champ from Kennard-Dale High School and Junior Hodge Trophy winner in 2014. The native of Altoona, Pa., has since been trying to live up to that hype; first as a heralded recruit at Oklahoma State in 2014 before he eventually transferred to Lock Haven where he earned two All-American honors (4th in 2018 and 3rd in 2019). He also has competed well on the freestyle mat, finishing second in the 2019 U.S. Open and most recently at the World Team Trials Challenge tourney, where as a No. 5 seed upset Penn State’s two-time NCAA champ Carter Starocci and top-seed David McFadden before winning two of three exciting Best-of-3 Finals matches with Vincenzo Joseph.
But he also has had his personal issues of drug and alcohol use, which played a part in him receiving a seven-year probation in 2017 that kept him out prison in an interrupted college career at Lock Haven.
Marstellar talked about his personal issues after winning the recent World Team Trials Challenge Tournament.
“I promise you. I give more than anyone out there every single day in life,” said Marstellar. “I’ve taken the hard way out. God has a plan. I got clean for real this time after almost losing everything two years ago, when my wife was about to leave me and I almost lost my kids. Nothing was more important at that time than that drug. I finally checked myself into rehab. If I don’t change for real, I’m going to die.
“I’m finally being me and the Chance Marstellar that everyone remembers. That wasn’t me at Lock Haven, where I was faking it. I’m not proud of it, but I’m the real me again.”
GR – 77k: Britton Holmes (Army WCAP) vs. Kamal Bey (Army WCAP) at June 8 Final X in New York City
Holmes, 23, was once Peyton (Colo.) High School’s first state high school champion in 2016, before he announced one year later that he would focus on Greco-Roman wrestling and join the program at Northern Michigan. He has since joined the Army’s World Class Athlete Program and represented the United States at the U23 World Championships in 2021 before winning the U.S. Open in April. He then claimed a Final X spot at the recent World Team Trials Challenge Tournament, where he upset top-seed and 2018 World Team member RaVaughn Perkins, 4-3.
Bey, 24, won a Junior World championship in 2017 and the native of Bellwood, Ill., has continued to grow on the Senior level, especially in 2018 when he won the World Team Trials and won two of three bouts in Budapest, Hungary. He has since joined the Army’s World Class Athlete Program and most recently defeated Jesse Porter at the World Team Trials Challenge tourney to also earn a spot at Final X.
WFS – 62k: Kayla Miracle (Sunkist Kids WC) vs. Jennifer Rogers (NLWC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
Miracle, 26, is coming off her strongest women’s freestyle season in 2021, when she first qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in August, then claimed a silver medal two months later at the World Championships in Oslo, Norway. That World finish earned this native of Culver, Ind., an automatic spot in the 2022 Final X.
Along the way, Miracle won four college national championships at Campbellsville (where she wrestled for her father Lee Miracle), while also competing at the U23 (silver) and Senior World Championships (eighth) in 2019.
Overall, she has competed in two Cadet Worlds in 2011 and 2012 (silver), three Junior Worlds in 2014 (bronze), 2015 and 2016 (bronze) and three U23 Worlds in 2017, ’18 and ’19.
Rogers, 29, earned her spot in Final X when he World Team Trials Challenge tourney opponent Macey Kilty suffered a tournament-ending shoulder injury in the Best-of-3 finals in Coralville (similar to what happened to Kilty in the 2020 Olympic Trials to Miracle).
But Rogers, a native of Sacramento, Calif., has enjoyed a strong women’s freestyle career, dating back to 2013 when she earned a bronze medal at the Junior World Championships and she won a U.S. Open title in 2017 when she finished second in the World Team Trials. Formerly known as Jennifer Page, she joined the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club in 2020.
Click on Previous Dates to preview those weight classes.
MFS – 57k: Thomas Gilman (Nittany Lion WC) vs. Vito Arujau (Spartan) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater, Okla.
GR – 55k: Max Nowry (Army WCAP) vs. Brady Koontz (Ohio RTC) at Final X (June 3) in Stillwater, Okla.
WFS – 50k: Sarah Hildebrandt (NYAC) vs. Alyssa Lampe Sunkist Kids WC at June 8 Final X in New York City
MFS – 61k: Daton Fix (Cowboy RTC) vs. Seth Gross (Sunkist Kids WC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater, Okla.
GR – 60k: Dalton Roberts (Army WCAP) vs. Ildar Hafizov (Army WCAP) at June 8 Final X in New York City
WFS – 53k: Felicity Taylor (Bearcat WC) vs. Dominique Parrish (Sunkist Kids WC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
MFS – 65k: Yianni Diakomihalis (Spartan) vs Evan Henderson (Ohio RTC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
GR – 63k: Sammy Jones (NYAC) vs. Jesse Thielke (Army WCAP) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
WFS – 55k: Jenna Burkert (US Army WCAP) vs. Jacarra Winchester (TMWC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
MFS – 70k: Zain Retherford (NLWC) vs. Jordan Oliver (Sunkist Kids WC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
GR – 67k: Alejandro Sancho (Army WCAP) vs. Alston Nutter (Sunkist Kids WC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
WFS – 57k: Helen Maroulis (Sunkist Kids WC) vs. Alex Hedrick (USOP/TMWC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
MFS – 74k: Kyle Dake (Spartan) vs. Jason Nolf (NLWC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
GR – 72k: Patrick Smith (Minnesota Storm) vs. Benji Peak (Sunkist Kids WC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
WFS – 59k: Lexie Basham (Spartan) vs. Abigail Nette (Army WCAP) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
Monday, May 30
MFS – 86k: David Taylor (NLWC) vs. Zahid Valencia at June 8 Final X in New York City
GR – 82k: Ben Provisor (NYAC) vs. Spencer Woods (Army WCAP) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
WFS – 65: Forrest Molinari (Sunkist Kids WC) vs. Mallory Velte (BDRT) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
Tuesday, May 31
MFS – 92k: J’den Cox (TMWC) vs. Nathan Jackson (NYAC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
GR – 87k: Alan Vera (NYAC) vs. Timothy Young (Illinois) at June 8 Final X in New York City
WFS – 68k: Tamyra Mensah Stock (TMWC) vs. Sienna Ramirez (Southern Oregon) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
Wednesday, June 1
MFS – 97k: Kyle Snyder (NLWC) vs. Kollin Moore (Ohio RTC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
GR – 97k: G’Angelo Hancock vs. Braxton Amos (Wisconsin RTC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
WRS – 72k: Skyler Grote (NYAC) vs. Amit Elor (NYC/TMWC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
Thursday, June 2
MFS – 125k: Hayden Zillmer (Gopher WC/RTC) vs. Nick Gwiazdowski (Spartan/TMWC) at June 8 Final X in New York City
GR – 130k: Cohlton Schultz (Sunkist Kids WC) vs. Tanner Farmer (NYAC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater
WFS – 76k: Dymond Guilford (USOP/TMWC) vs. Yelena Makoyed (Card/TMWC) at June 3 Final X in Stillwater