First four U.S. Greco wrestlers weigh in and get draws at Junior Worlds in Croatia

By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling | Aug. 04, 2014, 12:42 p.m. (ET)
The U.S. FILA Junior Greco-Roman World Team poses together in Zagreb, Croatia. The first four Americans have weighed in and start competition on Tuesday.

ZAGREB, Croatia – The first four U.S. Greco-Roman wrestlers have weighed in and received their draws for the opening day of wrestling at the FILA Junior World Championships.

Three of the four U.S. wrestlers have drawn opponents from Russia in their opening bout.

Returning FILA Junior World Team member Kevin Beazley (Howell, Mich./Virginia Beach RTC) opens at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. against Nokhcho Labazanov of Russia, who was fifth in Senior-level Vaanta Cup in Finland in 2013. Beazley wrestles for Old Dominion University.

“I feel great. Training Camp was excellent. We had a tough first few days, then we peaked our bodies for the tournament. I know I have to stay aggressive and score points. A lot of guys can’t keep up with you late in the matches. I must keep scoring points, stay in there, and come out on top,” said Beazley.

Jon Jay Chavez (Boise, Idaho/Suples WC/BWC/CYC), who was a 2013 FILA Cadet World bronze medalist, will compete at the Junior Worlds this year. His first-round opponent is David Klimek of Poland, who was seventh in 2014 European Junior Championships. Chavez comes off a Junior Nationals Greco-Roman title in Fargo in mid-July.

Representing the USA at a World tournament for the first time is Josiah Seaton (Bonner Springs, Kansas/Trojan WC) at 50 kg/110 lbs. Seaton drew Artur Petrosyan of Russia, who was third in 2013 European Cadet Championships.

Iowa State-bound Dante Rodriguez (Kearney, Neb./Cyclone WC) opens his competition at 60 kg/132 lbs. against Sergei Emelin of Russia, who was seventh in 2012 Cadet European Championships.

U.S. coach Dale Oliver believes the U.S. athletes enter the event well prepared and confident.

“The training camp went well. We had a great camp at Northern Michigan with host Rob Hermann. The attitude of the wrestlers was phenomenal. They all had a great work ethic. Nobody ever let up. Their spirits are good. They all made weight effectively and efficiently. We have some good chances for medals,” said Oliver.

At Zagreb, Croatia

U.S. Greco-Roman draws for Tuesday

50 kg/110 lbs. – Josiah Seaton, Bonner Springs, Kansas (Trojan WC)
Vs. Artur Petrosyan (Russia), 3rd in 2013 European Cadet Championships

60 kg/132 lbs. – Dante Rodriguez, Kearney, Neb. (Cyclone WC)
Vs. Sergei Emelin (Russia), 7th in 2012 Cadet European Championships, 2014 Herman Kare Tournament champion (Finland)

74 kg/163 lbs. – Jon Jay Chavez, Boise, Idaho (Suples WC/BWC/CYC)
Vs. David Klimek (Poland), 7th in 2014 European Junior Championships, 2011 European Cadet champion, 3rd in 2012 European Cadet Championships

96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Kevin Beazley, Howell, Mich. (Virginia Beach RTC)
Vs. Nokhcho Labazanov (Russia), 5th in 2013 Vaanta Cup (Finland)