Smith repeats as Greco champion, Speiller, Haight also win golds at Pan American Championships

FRISCO, Texas – Three U.S. Greco-Roman stars won gold medals and the USA won the team title at the Pan American Championships on Sunday night at the Dr. Pepper Arena. Team USA had seven total medals, including a silver and three bronze medals

Winning the Pan American Championships for the second year in a row was Patrick Smith (Minneapolis, Minn./Minnesota Storm), who defeated Jair Cuero Munoz of Colombia, 2-2 in the 71 kg/156 lbs. finals. Cuero led 2-0 on a second period gut wrench, but Smith blocked a Cuero throw for a two-point takedown and held on to the win by scoring the last point. Cuero is a previous two-time Pan American bronze medalist. Continue reading at

One-on-One with Joe Rau

Joe Rau of the Minnesota Storm is an Olympic hopeful in Greco-Roman at 98 kilos. He was a U.S. World Team member in 2014 at 80 kilos, and this past December won title at the U.S. Nationals at 98 kilos.

Rau, an Illinois native, competed collegiately at Elmhurst College and was a three-time All-American and NCAA Division III champion as a senior in 2013.

InterMat caught up with Rau. Continue reading at

Tony Nelson Wins Silver Medal In Turkey

Gopher alums Tony Nelson and Scott Schiller donned the red, white and blue this weekend as part of Team USA at the Yasar Dogu International in Istanbul and both turned in strong performances, particularly Nelson, who captured the silver medal in freestyle at 125 kilograms.

Nelson picked up three victories on his way to the championship bout, overwhelming his side of the bracket along the way. He began with consecutive 10-0 tech falls, first knocking off Recep Bolme and then Slim Trablsi. In his semifinal match, Nelson pinned Yasin Kilic in just 1:38, putting him into the finals without a point allowed. Nelson found himself fighting for the gold against two-time World champion Taha Akguel, who took the match, 10-0. Continue reading

14 athletes qualify for U.S. Olympic Team Trials field in Iowa City at Schultz Memorial and on tours

There were 14 athletes added to the field in late January for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling, which will be held at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa, April 9-10.

The major qualifying event just held was the Dave Schultz Memorial International, held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo, January 28-30. The highest placing USA athlete in each weight class winning a medal who had not yet qualified advanced to Iowa City. There were 12 athletes who qualified for Iowa City at the Dave Schultz Memorial, seven in men’s freestyle, six in Greco-Roman and one in women’s freestyle. Continue reading

Jayson Ness Qualifies For U.S. Olympic Team Trials

Ness’ dominant performance in Colorado Springs on Saturday clinched his spot in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials

Jayson Ness won the 65-kilogram title in freestyle at the Dave Schultz Memorial International in Colorado Springs, Colo. on Saturday, a victory that guarantees the former Gopher and 2010 NCAA champion a spot in the U.S. Olympic Team Trails this April.

Ness won the title in definitive fashion, allowing just one point throughout his four matches. Ness began his day with a pin at 1:47 of his first bout, before earning tech falls over fellow Gopher alum Nick Dardanes (12-1), Chase Pami (10-0) and, in the finals, Bernard Futrell (10-0). Continue reading

Minnesota surgeon/wrestler aiming for 2016 Olympics

John Wechter has never been one to leave things unfinished.

A married father of three with a burgeoning medical career as an orthopedic surgeon at Willmar’s ACMC clinic, Wechter seemingly isn’t a man who needs to pursue athletic success at this stage of his life.

This seems especially true considering that he’s already a decorated Greco-Roman wrestler, even winning the 98-kilogram weight class at the 2013 U.S. Open. Continue reading at

102 athletes qualify for U.S. Olympic Team Trials field in Iowa City through U.S. Nationals/Trials Qualifier in Las Vegas

There were 102 athletes added to the field this weekend for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling, which will be held at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa, April 9-10.

The U.S. Senior Nationals/Trials Qualifier was held in Las Vegas, Nev. this past weekend, the largest qualifying event in the #Road2IowaCity qualifying series. Continue reading