Senior National champs Maroulis, Gray repeat at Body Bar FILA Junior champions, earning spots on Junior World Team
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – A pair of 2009 U.S. Senior Nationals champions earned the right to return to compete in the Junior World Championships for the second straight year with victories at the Body Bar FILA Junior Women’s National Championships at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. on Saturday.
All FILA Junior champions qualify to represent Team USA at the 2009 FILA Junior World Championships in Konya, Turkey, July 31-August 8. Runner ups in the tournament qualify to go to the 2009 FILA Junior Pan American Championships in Guadalajara, Mexico, June 19-21.
2009 U.S. Senior National champions Helen Maroulis of Maryland (New York AC) at 55 kg/121 lbs. and Adeline Gray of Colorado (New York AC) at 67 kg/147.5 lbs., members of the 2008 Junior World Team, scored impressive wins. Both are high school athletes who train with the U.S. Olympic Education Center at Northern Michigan Univ.
Gray was a 2008 Junior World Champion and will earn the right to defend her title. She defeated Megan Agajanian of the University of the Cumberlands by pin, 6-0, 0:43.
“I am thrilled,” said Gray about going back to the Junior Worlds. “It will be a lot different than last year. I am more excited this year. I was nervous last year. Now I know I am capable of winning. That confidence will allow me to execute the way I know I can.”
As the Senior National champion, Gray will also be the top seed at her weight class at the World Team Trials, presented by the U.S. Marines, in Council Bluffs, Iowa, May 30-31. That event will determine the U.S. Senior World Team, which will compete in Herning, Denmark in September. Gray said this tournament will help her prepare for Council Bluffs.
“I love going to camp with Coaches Steiner and Izzy. Whenever I get a chance to come here and train, it is great. This tournament is fun. It is a nice warmup,” said Gray.
Maroulis defeated USOEC teammate Amy Whitbeck in the finals, 1-0, 2-0. In 2008, Maroulis placed third in the 2008 Junior World Championships. She also represented Team USA at the 2008 Women’s Senior World Championships, placing eighth.
“I think I wrestled well today,” said Maroulis. “I was relaxed. I’m really excited about the opportunity to go to the Junior Worlds again. I want to redeem myself for last year. That has been my goal since the Junior Worlds ended last summer.”
Maroulis competed at 51 kg last year, but moved up to 55 kg where she won the U.S. Senior Nationals in April.
“After the last couple of times weighing in at 51 kg, I realized it was not the right weight for me anymore. I feel stronger and more competitive and it is not as stressful on my body. There has been so much to work on this year to learn from my international losses,” she said.
FILA Junior athletes must be between the ages 17-20 (Born 1989-1991, 1992 with a medical certificate).
It was a strong day for the U.S. Olympic Education Center team at Northern Michigan, which put four athletes on the Junior World Team.
Repeating as a Junior World Team member for the USOEC was Schuyler Brown of Virginia, who captured the title at 59 kg/130 lbs. Last year, Brown was the champion at 63 kg/138.75 lbs. Brown defeated 2008 FILA Cadet Nationals champion Katarina Perez of California (Perez Wrestling) in the finals by technical fall, 7-0, 10-3. Brown was named Outstanding Wrestler for the tournament.
“It feels good to do it again,” said Brown. “I don’t think I would have been able to finish my takedowns except for help from (Olympic bronze medalist) Randi Miller. She has helped me and the rest of the team with our intensity and focus.”
One of the nation’s top women wrestlers, 2008 Senior World bronze medalist Tatiana Padilla of California (Sunkist Kids), was unable to qualify for her third straight Junior World Team, competing at 59 kg/130 lbs. Padilla is the defending FILA Junior champion and two-time Junior World medalist at this weight.
Padilla showed up late and missed her first match of the tournament, losing by forfeit to Perez. Although a new age-group rule allowed Padilla to remain in the tournament, Perez won the rest of the matches in the pool to advance to the finals against Brown.
Brown and Padilla had met in the bronze-medal match at the 2009 U.S. Nationals, won by Brown, 1-0, 1-0. Padilla’s forfeit meant they did not meet here today.
“It would have been nice to wrestle her again. We had a close match in Las Vegas. It just didn’t work out that we wrestled here,” said Brown. “My goal is to win the Junior Worlds, nothing less.”
The other USOEC individual champion was Veronica Carlson of Illinois, who captured the gold medal at 63 kg/138.75 lbs. with a 1-1, 3-0 victory over Randi Beltz of St. Clair High School of Missouri.
“I came here and did what I was supposed to do. Last year, I had a back injury. I came here to get it done. I didn’t let anybody stand in my way. I am excited about going to the Junior Worlds. It’s a big tournament,” said Carlson.
Another 2008 FILA Junior champions who repeated with a gold medal was Victoria Anthony of California (Team So Cal) at 44 kg/97 lbs. Anthony needed all three periods to defeat Ashley Shannon of Maryland (Univ. of the Cumberlands), 2-0, 1-3, 2-0.
Capturing the title at 48 kg/105.5 lbs. was C.C. Weber of Michigan (Sunkist Kids), who was a FILA Cadet Nationals champion last year and placed third in the Senior Nationals this year. Weber defeated Candace Workman of Utah (Uintah) in the finals, 5-0,6-0.
“I’m really happy to go to the Junior Worlds. Last year, I came in second. I need to work on a lot of stuff before I am satisfied. There are things I have to improve on,” said Weber.
Other individual champions who earned trips to the Junior World Championships were Trinity Plessinger of Colorado (USOTC) at 51 kg / 112.25 lbs. and Chrisen Paysee of California (Univ. of the Cumberlands) at 72 kg/158.5 lbs.
Both defeated opponents from the USOEC in the finals. Plessinger stopped Emily Martin, 3-1, 5-0 in the finals, and Paysee beat Lindsay Brooks, 2-4, 4-3, 6-1 in the gold-medal match.
Winning the non-World Championships weight class of 79.5 kg / 175 lbs. in an uncontested division was Brittany Delgado of South Carolina (OCU Stars)
True second place matches were held in five weight classes to determine alternates for the Junior World Team. They were only held if the runner-up and the third-place finisher did not wrestle during the tournament.
BODY BAR FILA JUNIOR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
At Colorado Springs, Colo., May 2
44 kg / 97 lbs.
1st Place - Victoria Anthony of Team So Cal
2nd Place - Ashley Shannon of Univ. of the Cumberlands
3rd Place - Emily Webster of N/A
4th Place - Sara Rowen of OCU Stars
5th Place - Beth Simmons of SD Hot Beaches
6th Place - Denisia Godfrey of Wyoming
1st - Victoria Anthony (Team So Cal) over Ashley Shannon (U/T) Dec 2-0,1-3,2-0
3rd - Emily Webster (N/A) over Sara Rowen (OCU Stars) Fall 6-0,1:47
5th - Beth Simmons (SD Hot Beaches) over Denisia Godfrey (Wyoming) Fall 0:15
48 kg / 105.75 lbs.
1st Place - CC Weber of Sunkist Kids
2nd Place - Candace Workman of Uintah
3rd Place - Gabrielle Henry of University of the Cumberlands
4th Place - Jordan-Lee Higa of Team Hawaii
5th Place - Lisa Anson of TNT
1st - CC Weber (Sunkist Kids) over Candace Workman (Uintah) Dec 5-0,6-0
3rd - Gabrielle Henry (University of the Cumberlands) over Jordan-Lee Higa (Team Hawaii) Fall 0:21
51 kg / 112.25 lbs.
1st Place - Trinity Plessinger of USOC
2nd Place - Emily Martin of USOEC
3rd Place - Emily Harper of Victory School of Wrestling
4th Place - Michelle Jimenez of Jimenez
5th Place - Natalie Rutt of Victory School of Wrestling
6th Place - Stacy Martin of Black Widow
1st - Trinity Plessinger (USOC) over Emily Martin (USOEC) Dec 3-2,5-0
3rd - Emily Harper (Victory School of Wrestling) over Michelle Jimenez (Jimenez) Fall 1:15
5th - Natalie Rutt (Victory School of Wrestling) over Stacy Martin (Black Widow) Dec 3-3,6-0
55 kg / 121.25 lbs.
1st Place - Helen Maroulis of USOEC
2nd Place - Amy Whitbeck of USOEC
3rd Place - Michaela Hutchison of OCU Stars
4th Place - Cianah Hee of University of the Cumberlands
5th Place - Tanya Kusse of Apex Wrestling Club
6th Place - Stephanie LaPointe of Victory School of Wrestling
1st - Helen Maroulis (USOEC) over Amy Whitbeck (USOEC) Dec 1-0,2-0
3rd - Michaela Hutchison (OCU Stars) over Cianah Hee (University of the Cumberlands) Fall 0:49
5th - Tanya Kusse (Apex Wrestling Club) over Stephanie LaPointe (Victory School of Wrestling) TF 7-0,6-0
59 kg / 130 lbs.
1st Place - Schuyler Brown of USOEC
2nd Place - Katarina Perez of Perez Wrestling
3rd Place - Tatiana Padilla of Sunkist Kids
4th Place - Kirsten Strickler of OCU Stars
5th Place - Haylee Childs of George Jenkins Wrestling Club
6th Place - Cortnei Mudge of Lindenwood
1st - Schuyler Brown (USOEC) over Katarina Perez (Perez Wrestling) TF 7-0,10-3
3rd - Tatiana Padilla (Sunkist Kids) over Kirsten Strickler (OCU Stars) TF 6-0,7-0
5th - Haylee Childs (George Jenkins Wrestling Club) over Cortnei Mudge (Lindenwood) Dec 2-0,4-1
63 kg /138.75 lbs.
1st Place - Veronica Carlson of USOEC
2nd Place - Randi Beltz of St. Clair High School
3rd Place - Melissa Apodaca of USOEC
4th Place - Lauren Louive of University of the Cumberlands
5th Place - Tessa Plana of OCU Stars
6th Place - Laura Ponshock of OCU Stars
1st Place Match
Veronica Carlson (USOEC) over Randi Beltz (St. Clair High School) Dec 1-1,3-0
3rd Place Match
Melissa Apodaca (USOEC) over Lauren Louive (University of the Cumberlands) Dec 1-0,1-0
5th Place Match
Tessa Plana (OCU Stars) over Laura Ponshock (OCU Stars) Fall 1:42
67 kg / 147.5 lbs.
1st Place - Adeline Gray of USOEC
2nd Place - Megan Agajanian of University of the Cumberlands
3rd Place - Karra Stratton of Team KIA
4th Place - Ashley Mathews of SD Hot Beaches
5th Place - Jessica C. Bowman of Kansas Krusaders
6th Place - Lilia Salas of Team Talon
1st - Adeline Gray (USOEC) over Megan Agajanian (University of the Cumberlands) Fall 6-0,0:43
3rd - Karra Stratton (Team KIA) over Ashley Mathews (SD Hot Beaches) TF 9-2,6-0
5th - Jessica C. Bowman (Kansas Krusaders) over Lilia Salas (Team Talon) Dec 1-1,3-0
72 kg / 158.5 lbs.
1st Place - Christen Paysse of University of the Cumberlands
2nd Place - Lindsay Brooks of USOEC
3rd Place - Erin Clodgo of USOEC
4th Place - Kendra Lewis of University of the Cumberlands
5th Place - Laura Gourley of USA School Of Wrestling LLC
1st - Christen Paysse (University of the Cumberlands) over Lindsay Brooks (USOEC) Dec 2-4,4-3,6-1
3rd - Erin Clodgo (USOEC) over Kendra Lewis (University of the Cumberlands) Fall 1:56
79.5 kg / 175 lbs.
1st Place - Brittany Delgado of OCU Stars
TRUE SECOND PLACE MATCHES
44 kg / 97 lbs. - Ashley Shannon (Univ. of the Cumberlands) pin Emily Webster (N/A), 1:59
48 kg / 105.75 lbs. - Gabrielle Henry (University of the Cumberlands) tech. fall Candace Workman (Uintah), 6-0, 8-0
51 kg / 112.25 lbs. - Emily Martin (USOEC) pin Emily Harper (Victory School of Wrestling), 1-0, 0:45
67 kg / 147.5 lbs. - Karra Stratton (Team KIA) dec. Megan Agajanian (University of the Cumberlands), 2-0, 2-0
72 kg / 158.5 lbs. - Erin Clodgo (USOEC) forfeit over Lindsay Brooks (USOEC)