Source: USA Wrestling
FARGO, N.D. â€“ Michiganâ€™s Taylor Massa is looking forward to an upcoming family vacation.
He certainly deserves one after the hectic and productive week heâ€™s had.
Massa became the first two-time USA Wrestling Triple Crown winner after he downed Washingtonâ€™s Jordan Rogers 4-2, 3-1 in the 152-pound Cadet freestyle finals on Friday afternoon at the Fargo Dome.
â€œI had just about everything to lose and everybody I wrestle is really coming after me,â€ Massa said. â€œEverybody expects me to win. I just have to make sure I donâ€™t get too caught up in everything. I have to put all the Triple Crown talk out of my head and just wrestle hard every time I go out there.â€
Minnesotaâ€™s Jake Waste (160) and Wisconsinâ€™s Devin Peterson (171) followed with Cadet Triple Crowns of their own on a historic day in North Dakota.
Waste and Peterson became the sixth and seventh Cadets to win Triple Crowns, joining Massa and four other previous winners on the list.
Massa survived an early scare when Rogers caught him on his back in the first period. Massa quickly recovered and came back to win the period. Massa also came from behind to win the second period.
â€œIt was kind of scary when he caught me,â€ Massa said. â€œOnce I got off my back, I knew I could get some takedowns and come back. I didnâ€™t let that get on my nerves at all. I just had to regroup. I was a little disappointed with my performance. I wanted to dominate everyone all the way through.â€
Waste came back from a loss in his freestyle pool to reach the finals. He made sure he didnâ€™t lose again in downing Sam Brooks of Illinois in the finals. Waste has overcome his share of adversity this year after he didnâ€™t make weight at the Minnesota state high school tournament.
Waste dropped the first period to Brooks 3-0 before earning convincing 5-0 and 6-0 victories in the last two periods.
â€œItâ€™s been a lifetime dream to win this,â€ Waste said. â€œI canâ€™t even describe what this feels like â€“ itâ€™s just amazing.â€
Peterson, a past Kids Triple Crown winner, beat Lucas Sheridan of California in three periods in the finals.
â€œSome people think a Triple Crown is no big deal or that itâ€™s nothing,â€ Peterson said. â€œTo me, it is a real big deal. It feels great to accomplish this. You put in all that hard work and to see it pay off at the end, itâ€™s just great. It was great to see the guys at 152 and 160 win Triple Crowns right before me. That was a big motivator for me. It was really cool to watch those guys win it before I did.â€
The Triple Crown consists of winning titles in the Folkstyle, Greco-Roman and freestyle divisions.
Michiganâ€™s Ben Whitford (112) was named Outstanding Wrestler of the Cadet freestyle tournament.
Whitford won a wild, three-period battle with New Jerseyâ€™s Mark Grey, who was trying to repeat as a double Cadet Nationals champion. Grey beat Whitford in the Cadet Greco finals.
In their freestyle finals matchup, Grey appeared to have won the match in two straight periods. But after Whitfordâ€™s coaches protested following the second period, the match went to a video review and six seconds were put back on the clock. Whitford then scored a takedown to send the match to a decisive third period. Whitford then caught Grey on his back en route to the win.
â€œI thought it was over,â€ Whitford said. â€œWhen they put the time back on the clock, I was so pumped up to have another chance.â€
Michigan had three champions with Massa, Whitford and Cadet 140-pound winner Jordan Wohlfert prevailing. Massa and Wohlfert are teammates at St. Johns (Mich.) High School.
Team Illinois â€“ led by individual champions Edwin Cooper (130), Austin Marsden (189) and Gage Harrah (215) â€“ won the team title.
Cooper countered a shot attempt late in the second period to score the winning points as he took two straight periods from Indianaâ€™s Jason Tsirtsis in the finals. Cooper was third in this event last year.
Tsirtsis, younger brother of past Iowa All-American Alex Tsirtsis, won a Cadet Folkstyle Nationals title earlier this year.
One other wrestler who had been in line to win a Triple Crown â€“ Oliver Pierce of Texas (135) â€“ ended up fourth in Cadet freestyle.
2008 Cadet Nationals double champion Nick Roberts of Pennsylvania (98) repeated as a double Cadet champion.
Roberts won a tough, three-period match over Ohioâ€™s Jered Cortez in the finals. The final period went to the leg clinch. Roberts won the coin flip and then finished with the leg to win the match.
Wisconsinâ€™s Alex Dieringer become a 2009 Cadet double champion at two different weight classes. Dieringer pinned Pennsylvaniaâ€™s Steve Spearman in the freestyle finals at 135 after winning a Cadet Greco title earlier in the week at 130.
â€œI was second (in freestyle) and third (in Greco-Roman) last year, so I knew I could come here and have a chance to win it this year,â€ Dieringer said. â€œThat experience from last year helped out a lot.â€
Tyler Fraley of New Jersey, a Junior Nationals champion in freestyle in 2008, fell just short of become a double Cadet Nationals champion in 2009. Virginiaâ€™s Joey Dance downed Fraley in the Cadet freestyle finals, avenging a loss to Fraley in the Greco finals on Monday.
Missouriâ€™s Terrel Wilbourn (125) took two straight periods from 2008 Cadet freestyle champion Zachary Horan of Pennsylvania. Wilbourn won the title after placing third in Cadets in 2008. He caught Horan with a throw late in the first period to take control.
CADET NATIONALS FREESTYLE FINALS RESULTS
Darshawn Sharpe (Georgia) dec. Billy Rappo (Pennsylvania), 5-2, 9-7
Brad Perkins (Missouri) dec. Phillip Laux (Iowa), 7-0, 5-3
Nick Roberts (Pennsylvania) dec. Jered Cortez (Ohio), 2-1, 0-2, 2-0
Joey Dance (Virginia) dec. Tyler Fraley (New Jersey), 2-0, 1-0
Ben Whitford (Michigan) dec. Mark Grey (New Jersey), 1-1, 1-1, 5-3
Kagan Squire (Ohio) dec. Brandon Sorensen (Iowa), 0-1, 1-0, 1-0
Terrel Wilbourn (Missouri) dec. Zachary Horan (Pennsylvania), 4-1, 6-0
Edwin Cooper (Illinois) dec. Jason Tsirtsis (Indiana), 4-2, 2-1
Alex Dieringer (Wisconsin) pinned Steve Spearman (Pennsylvania), 8-1, 0:50
Jordan Wohlfert (Michigan) dec. Brian Brill (Pennsylvania), 5-11, 4-0, 3-0
Justin Koethe (Iowa) dec. Dominic Prezzia (Ohio), 1-0, 1-0
Taylor Massa (Michigan) dec. Jordan Rogers (Washington), 4-2, 3-1
Jake Waste (Minnesota) dec. Sam Brooks (Illinois), 0-3, 5-0, 6-0
Devin Peterson (Wisconsin) dec. Lucas Sheridan (California), 2-0, 2-2, 2-0
Austin Marsden (Illinois) dec. Curtis Berger (Oregon), 0-1, 4-3, 5-0
Gage Harrah (Illinois) dec. Nick Tavanello (Ohio), 2-1, 0-3, 3-2
Donny Longendyke (Minnesota) vs. Greg Kuhar (Ohio), 3-1, 6-0