Madison will give us a glimpse of the future of Team USA wrestling as the Junior division of the World Team Trials is under way this weekend too, and several Hawkeye’s and Cyclone’s will be in the mix for a spot on the Junior team.

From Team USA

at Madison, Wis., May 30

Friday, May 30 
Men’s Freestyle and Greco-Roman: All weights
9:00 a.m. – Challenge Tournament Preliminaries, Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Finals
2:30 p.m. – Final Trials: Match #1, Match #2 and Match #3 (if needed)

55 KG

Thomas Gilman

Gilman, who spent half of the season as the starter at 125 for the Hawkeyes will enter his weight class as one of the favorites. During his time as a starter, Gilman was able to capture a Midland title, and maybe more importantly notched victories over Nebraska Tim Lambert and Lehigh’s Darian Cruz. Those last two accomplishment’s are important because they make up one third of his competition at this weight. Gilman is pretty accomplished and I like his chances at claiming the team spot, but he will have Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State) in a best of three finals to do it.

60 KG

Dante Rodriguez

Jack Hathaway

This is a pretty open weight and Iowa State recruit Rodriguez has made a pretty good name for himself this Spring especially coming off his Northern Plains title earlier this month. Rodriguez who is competing in the Greco division, will have a very real chance at challenging for a team spot. Joey McKenna, who is Stanford bound, is my favorite in this class, as his display at the FILA Junior US Open really impressed me. Hathaway, who was an Iowa City West prep, will have his work cut out for him, and I am not sure he has the offense to win the spot.

66 KG

Brandon Sorenson

Seth Gross

Future Hawkeye Gross will be tested early as his bracket is loaded with some really good talent. For starters there is his own teammate Brandon Sorenson, who won a few matches against All-Americans and placed third as a true freshman at the Midland tournament. The favorite is probably Aaron Pico, who beat up a really good Zain Retherford (Penn State) at the FILA Junior Open. Retherford who is coming off All-American honors as a true freshman went all the way until the conference finals for Retherford to pick up his first loss this past year, and he also took second to Aaron Pico at FILA’s Junior Open.

74 KG

Blayne Briceno

Iowa State’s Briceno will be competing in the Greco style this weekend with five other wrestlers in his bracket. Briceno spent his first season at 149 (so you’ll notice he is up a bit in weight) for the Cyclones posting a 14-4 record. I am not sure how Briceno does wrestling up at 163 lbs.

84 KG

Sammy Brooks

Brooks has probably one of the more stacked brackets in the FILA division, with All-Americans Gabe Dean (Cornell) and Jack Dechow (Old Dominion), and high school phenoms Bo Nickal (Penn State bound) and Mark Hall among some of the names competing. Brooks will need to bring his lunch pail to be the World Team member, but he is very talented and has a tremendous gas tank that he can use to his advantage.

120 KG 

Jon Scanlan

Scanlan will be going up against the likes of Brooks Black (Illinois) and Michael Kroells (Minnesota)in this weight class so he will be facing an up hill battle against a few guys who have been in a college wrestling room. Oh and Round of 12 finisher Adam Coon (Michigan) will be waiting in a best of three finals.

By Ross Bartachek (@rossbchek)

Lead Editor of IA Wrestle