This weekend kicks off USA Wrestling’s series of qualifying events for next spring’s Olympic Team Trials for a majority of our domestic competitors. Wrestlers who competed on a world team within the last Olympic cycle or a 2019 Junior or U23 World Champion are also already qualified for the Trials.

The first leg of the qualifying series is the Bill Farrell Open held in New York this week, November 15-16th. The event sends the highest placing U.S. individual to the Olympic Team Trials. If the highest placing American wrestler is already qualified, the Olympic qualifying spot would then be awarded to the second highest placing American.

This weekend marks the first time fans will get a glimpse of Cory Clark making his return to 125 pounds (57 kg) as the Hawkeye Wrestling Club competitor has registered for this weekend. Clark began his four-time All-American career at 125 pounds for the Hawkeyes before making the bump to 133 pounds for his final three seasons. This will be the first time Clark has been down at this weight since 2014.

Some of the top compeitiors at this weight include Nahshon Garrett, who is already qualified for the Trials by winning the 2018 World Team Trials process, and Junior World team member Seth Gross is also registered.

The Bill Farrell will also be the first time that Iowa fans will be able to watch 65 kg competitor Jaydin Eierman compete since he announced his decision to transfer to Iowa for the 2020-21 season. Eierman is a former U23 World Team member and Pan American Games bronze medalist for the U.S., but he will be in a stacked field with 2016 Olympian Frank Molinaro, and Multi-time National team member Jordan Oliver also registered.

Several other wrestlers with Iowa ties are also registered at 65 kg. Former Northern Iowa All-American Joey Lazor, two-time Iowa State All-American Earl Hall, and former Sargent Bluff-Luton graduate Colton McCrystal are all registered. McCrystal is a former U23 World Team member and Pan American gold medalist.

The lone 74 kg representative with an Iowa tie is HWC’s Brandon Sorensen, who is bumping up to compete at an Olympic weight. Since graduating from Iowa Sorensen has competed entirely at 70 kg, so this will be his first competition up at 165.

Leading the field will be 2019 World Team runner-up Isaiah Martinez and 2018 Junior World champion Mekhi Lewis.

The 86 kg field will feature two wrestlers with ties, Sammy Brooks and Drew Foster. Originally Iowa State All-American Willie Miklus was scheduled to compete, but was a late scratch. Representing the HWC Brooks will be one of the main contenders at this weight along with former U23 World Team member Myles Martin and USA Wrestling’s 79 kg team alternate Alex Dieringer.

Coming off his NCAA title performance in 2019 Foster has been making the transition into freestyle this will be the UNI grad’s first International experience.

The last wrestler with an Iowa tie is 97 kg wrestler Kyven Gadson who will be looking to lock up his Olympic Team Trials qualifying spot this weekend. The weight has been owned by Kyle Snyder since 2015, but Gadson has been the alternate for almost the same stretch of time. Snyder is also registered for the Farrell this week, so if he win the the second highest placing American would qualify for the Trials.

For the women we see two wrestlers with an Iowa tie already registered for the Farrell. At 57 kg we see National team member Lauren Louive registered and she will be a threat to win this tournament. Up at 68 kg we see former Iowa prep standout Rachel Watters as a contender at his weight as well. Watters has represented the USA at the Junior and U23 age levels on multiple occasions.

Friday, November 15

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM: Greco-Roman Session I
8:30 AM – 4:30 PM: Women’s Freestyle Session I

5:00 PM – 6:30 PM: Greco-Roman Medal Matches
5:00 PM – 6:30 PM: Women’s Freestyle Medal Matches

Saturday, November 16

8:30 AM – 3:00 PM: Men’s Freestyle Session I

5:00 PM – 6:30 PM: Men’s Freestyle Medal Matches

57kg Cory Clark IA TMWC Iowa
65kg Jaydin Eierman MO TMWC Iowa
65kg Earl Hall VA TMWC ISU
65kg Joey Lazor IA PWC UNI
65kg Colton McCrystal MO TMWC Iowa prep
74kg Brandon Sorensen IA TMWC Iowa
86kg Willie Miklus  IA C-RTC ISU
86kg Samuel Brooks IA NYAC Iowa
86kg Drew Foster IA PWC UNI
97kg Kyven Gadson IA C-RTC ISU
97kg Enock Francois FL NYAC Cornell/Northwestern College
57kg Lauren Louive OH HWC
68kg Rachel Watters IA Iowa prep

*Registration information from Flowrestling

By Ross Bartachek (@rossbchek)

Lead Editor of IA Wrestle