Robert Howard selected as USA Wrestling Athlete of the Week

By Taylor Miller, USA Wrestling | June 06, 2018, 3:51 p.m. (ET)

Robert Howard (Cranford, N.J./Titan Mercury/Bitetto Trained) has been selected as TheMat.com Athlete of the Week on June 5, 2018.

Last weekend in Akron, Ohio, Robert Howard made his second-straight Cadet World Team, winning the 55 kg bracket at the World Team Trials, which featured two other past Cadet World Team members, 2017 Freestyle World Team member Julian Tagg and 2017 Greco World Team member Dylan Ragusin.

Howard opened the tournament with 10-0 technical falls over Vince Perez and Fargo All-American Tariq Hornbuckle, before running into 2018 Cadet Folkstyle National champion Nic Bouzakis.

Against Bouzakis, Howard put up a 9-3 decision to advance to the quarterfinals. There, he met up with Trevor Mastrogiovanni, who finished the season ranked No. 1 in the country at 113 pounds in Flowrestling’s high school rankings. Howard emerged with a 5-1 decision, thanks to a late takedown and exposure in the final minute of the bout.

In the opening seconds of his semifinals match against Teague Travis, Howard scored a 10-0 technical fall, advancing to the World Team Trials finals for the second year in a row.

Waiting for him in the best-of-three finals was fellow 2017 Cadet World Team member Tagg, who competed for the U.S. at 50 kg at 2017 Worlds in Athens, Greece.

Howard took control in the finals, ending the series in two matches with 10-1 and 4-1 decisions over Tagg to earn his second berth to the Cadet World Championships.

Howard and the rest of the Cadet World Team head to Zagreb, Croatia, to represent the Red, White and Blue on the World stage, July 2-8.

Each week USA Wrestling will select an Athlete of the Week based upon performance within wrestling for that week. The selection committee will consider any level of wrestling from youth programs through the senior level. Twitter fan votes also play a part in decision.

To nominate a wrestler for this honor please send the athlete's name, wrestling program, weekly accomplishments and career accolades to USA Wrestling Communications Coordinator Taylor Miller at tmiller@usawrestling.org.