Illinois wins Junior Greco-Roman Duals, Oklahoma second, Minnesota third, all with 4-1 record in finals pool

Coming into the 2021 Junior National Greco-Roman Duals, Illinois had won three straight team titles, including the most recent one held in 2019. With the COVID-19 pandemic canceling last year’s event, it would be a different group of wrestlers tasked with trying to make it four in a row for Illinois.

Although it wasn’t easy, and the team needed some help from another team, it was Illinois Junior Greco-Roman which had the championship trophy to pose early Thursday evening.

The six teams in the Gold/Silver pool each wrestled each other, with all of the teams getting five duals. After five rounds of action, Illinois Junior Greco-Roman, Minnesota Blue and host Oklahoma Outlaws Blue all finished with identical 4-1 records.

In short, the tiebreaker goes like this. The team with the least classification points is third, and that was Minnesota. Then, the head to head win by Illinois over Oklahoma gave Illinois the championship trophy. Continue reading at →

California wins Junior Women’s Duals; Illinois takes second

Minnesota goes 3-2 placing 9th overall

This year, the Gold/Silver pool at the Junior Women’s National Duals was a six-team round robin, which meant each team would wrestle each other with a total of five dual meets for each team. As the competition continued, it became apparent that the team champions would probably be determined when Pool A champion California met Pool C champion Illinois Junior Women in Round four.

On paper, the big showdown between returning Junior Women’s Duals national champion Illinois and perennial power California looked to be a toss-up. Illinois had nine nationally ranked wrestlers on the roster, with California bringing eight, and both teams looked strong in their first three Gold/Silver Pool dual meet wins.

The dual meet opened as if it was going to be a huge blow-out win for California, which won the first five matches, four by bonus points, to lead 21-1. California opened with a pair of pins from Maliya Castillo (180) and America Lopez (200). Lopez, ranked No. 17, pinned No. 12 Gainey in 4:48/ California added technical fall wins from No. 4 ranked Sam Calkins at 225 and No. 12 ranked Madison Avila to continue the great start. Continue reading at →

Core Values and Community

Terry Gorecki and Royalton-Upsala Wrestling

Since Terry Gorecki returned as head coach in 2016, the Royalton-Upsala Royals' wrestling program has been to four straight section finals and the last two state tournaments. To do that, the most important thing is to have the horses on the mat, but the rise of the Royals' program is based on two things – core values and community. Change either one of those foundations, and those four section finals don't happen.

Gorecki knew about the community aspect of wrestling early in his life.

"I started wrestling in Foley," Gorecki said. "I wrestled until tenth grade and decided to hang it up. Everyone wrestled in Foley, so I just did what everyone else did."

An old nemesis paved Gorecki's path back into wrestling.

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Breckenridge-Wahpeton wrestling heads toward co-op next season

The Breckenridge School Board voted unanimously to co-op their wrestling program next season with Wahpeton at a Wednesday, June 16 school board meeting.

The decision has been discussed for multiple weeks and was recommended by the School Board Activities Committee. The possibility of co-oping with another Minnesota school was also discussed. Due to travel for practices and games, a Wahpeton-Breckenridge co-op was determined to be the best option.

“It’s a little frustrating for me to hear either yay or nay,” school board member Ty Mikkelson said during the meeting.

After talks between Breckenridge Activities Director Chad Fredericksen and Wahpeton Activities Director Mike McCall, the two sides agreed that this was what’s best for both programs. Continue reading at →

Huskies recruit class grows to 12

St. Cloud, Minn. – St. Cloud State University head wrestling coach Steve Costanzo announced the addition of three more student-athletes to their strong 2021 recruiting class. Alyeus Craig (Wichita, Kan.) and Gabriel Rangel (Bettendorf, Iowa) have signed a National Letters of Intent with the Huskies while Sebastian Zamorano (St. Paul, Minn.) has signed an Acceptance of Admission letter.

Along with Craig, Rangel and Zamorano – nine additional stand-outs have announced their intentions to continue their education at SCSU in the fall: Mac Copeland (Bennett, Colo.), Augustus Donovan (Richland Center, Wis.), Anthony Herrera (Stansbury Park, Utah), Isaac Grams (Bloomington, Minn.), Nate Rocheleau (Gering, Neb.), Nicholas Lopez (Huntley, Ill.), Paul Ruff (Gering, Neb.), Tyson Meyer (Glenwood, Minn.) and Nicholas Novak (New Prague, Minn.). All have signed with Huskies wrestling earlier this past year.

Continue reading →