UPDATE: Fix beats Tomasello, Hancock makes third Greco World team at U23 World Team Trials on Sunday

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Oct. 08, 2017, 8:47 p.m. (ET)
Nathan Tomasello of Ohio RTC battles Daton Fix of the Cowboy RTC in the featured men’s freestyle battle at 57 kg at the U23 World Team Trials. Photo by Mark Lundy, Lutte Lens

U23 Trials Video Playlist

ROCHESTER, Minn. – It was a fantastic finish as the final 12 weight classes were determined in the finals series of the USA Wrestling U23 World Team Trials at the Mayo Civic Center on Sunday.

All eight men’s freestyle team members were determined, as well as the final four Greco-Roman spots, in a best-of-three series in each weight. This is the qualifying event in all three Olympic disciplines for the U23 World Championships, set for Bydgoszcz, Poland, November 21-26.

In a highly anticipated finals, 2017 Junior World champion Daton Fix defeated NCAA champion Nathan Tomasello, who is No. 3 on the Senior National Team, in two straight bouts in the men’s freestyle finals series.

Fix, a freshman at Oklahoma State, won a pair of back-and-forth bouts against the three-time All-American for Ohio State. In the first match, with Fix leading 8-7, Tomasello scored a last second takedown and was given a 9-8 victory. Fix’ corner challenged and the points were taken away, giving Fix a thin one-point win.

In the second bout, which again saw some lead changes, Fix got a 5-4 lead on a go behind. He was able to score a takedown late in the second period, knocking Tomasello into the scoring table for the 7-4 victory.

“Nathan Tomasello is an outstanding wrestler. To beat him, you have to wrestle hard, really hard. That’s what I planned on doing, going out there and wrestle like I train. You have to train that hard in the room, if you are going to wrestle that hard in competition. I have been training really hard, and doing real physical things," said Fix.

In Greco-Roman, G’Angelo Hancock of the Sunkist Kids made his third U.S. World Team of the year with a two-match sweep over Alton Meeks of the Florida Jets at 130 kg/286 lbs. Hancock won handily, with an 8-0 technical fall in bout one and a pin in 3:46 in bout two. Hancock is up a weight class, after competing at 98 kg at both the 2017 Senior World Championships in France and the 2017 Junior World Championships in Finland.

“My goal was to get in and out of there as fast as possible. The goal was to score early. The earlier you score, the later you can go in the rounds with a heavyweight. I weighed in at 106 kg. Definitely, the lightest heavyweight. That’s the thing my coaches talked to me about, to use my speed and technique, to tire out those guys and move them,” said Hancock.

Making his first U.S. World Championships team was two-time NCAA champion Isaiah Martinez of Illinois, who swept his finals series against Chance Marsteller of the Titan Mercury WC. Martinez, a three-time NCAA finalist, controlled the first match, 8-1. In bout two, Martinez trailed 6-5, but scored a takedown with 35 seconds left to win the match 7-6.

There were no preliminary bouts in this weight class as Marsteller and Martinez were the only entries. Marsteller was a 2017 University Nationals champion, while Martinez won University Nationals in 2016.

“I was surprised. I was the first to register, then nobody else registered except for Marsteller. In my mind, I like to believe they gave up there and then. But in reality, we are in the college season. Having Chance in there, we had a long time to think about our last match. It almost makes it harder. You know how they wrestle and they know you. He is always tough in freestyle and always gives it a good go. They were good matches,” said Martinez.

2017 Junior World champion Kamal Bey of the Sunkist Kids was dominant in the Greco-Roman finals at 80 kg/176 lbs., defeating Thomas Brackett in the championship series with a pair of 8-0 technical falls.

2017 Junior World silver medalist Mitchell McKee of the Minnesota Storm made the U.S. team at 61 kg/134 lbs., sweeping Isaac Jimenez of the Air Force RTC in his finals. McKee used a punishing front headlock in dominating the first match in an 11-0 technical fall. He gave up a few points in bout two, but emerged with a 15-4 technical fall. McKee competes for the Univ. of Minnesota, while Jimenez is at the U.S. Air Force Academy.

2014 Junior World silver medalist Joey McKenna of the Lehigh Valley AC/TMWC swept Oklahoma State’s Boo Lewallen of Cowboy RTC and Titan Mercury WC for the men’s freestyle title at 65 kg/143 lbs. McKenna is a senior transfer at Ohio State. McKenna won the first match 5-1, hitting a clutch four-point front headlock roll in the second period. In the second bout, McKenna trailed 4-2 at the break, but tied it with a takedown in the second, then scored four on a front headlock roll to finish off an 8-4 victory.

Sammy Brooks, the former Iowa star, defeated 2016 NCAA champion Myles Martin of Ohio State, in two straight matches at 86 kg/189 lbs. Brooks locked up a cradle for a takedown and a turn in both matches, and was able to keep a lead over Martin throughout both matches. He won bout one 8-5 and bout two 13-8.

Making their first U.S. World freestyle team were Richard Lewis of the Scarlett Knight WC at 70 kg/154 lbs., Ty Walz of VT/Southeast RTC at 97 kg/213 lbs. and Michael Kroells of the Minnesota Storm at 130 kg/286 lbs.

Lewis, who competes for Rutgers, defeated Nebraska star Tyler Berger of the Sunkist Kids in the finals, winning the first match 6-2 and the second match 7-1. Lewis missed much of last year’s college season with injury, and came back strong in his return to high-level competition.

Walz, a star at Virginia Tech, defeated Univ. of North Carolina wrestler Daniel Chaid of the Tarheel WC in a dominant fashion. Walz won the first match 8-1, then finished off the series with a 10-0 technical fall.

Kroells, who was a top star at Minnesota, beat Maryland big man Youssif Hemida of the Terrapin WC for the team berth. Kroells won the first match with a 10-0 technical fall. Hemida came back with a more competitive second match, but Kroells came out with a 9-4 victory.

In a battle of teammates at the Northern Michigan University – Olympic Training Site, two-time Junior World Team member Dalton Roberts of the New York AC defeated 2017 Junior World Team member Randon Miranda of the New York AC in two straight at 59 kg/130 lbs. in Greco-Roman. Roberts broke a 4-4 tie with a big four-point move for an 8-4 win in bout one. Roberts won a wild high scoring second bout, 11-10, to take the series.

Claiming the Greco-Roman team spot at 71 kg/156 lbs. was 2017 University Nationals champion Alex Mossing of the Air Force RTC, who stopped Colin Schubert of NYAC/NMU-OTS in two straight battles. Mossing was able to throw and pin Schubert in the first match in 3:39. In the second match, a big Mossing throw was taken away with a challenge late in the bout, and he trailed 8-6. Mossing won the match when he received a caution and two-point penalty against Schubert by aggressively forcing the action.

Over the two day event, all 24 best-of-three series were completed as two-match sweeps.

All of the action is archived on TrackWrestling.

U23 WORLD TEAM TRIALS
At Rochester, Minn., October 8

Men’s Freestyle results

57 kg/125.5 lbs.
1st - Daton Fix (CRTC/TMWC) dec. Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State/Ohio RTC/TMWC), two matches to none
Bout One – Fix dec. Tomasello, 8-7
Bout Two – Fix dec. Tomasello, 7-4
3rd – Joshua Rodriguez (Nittany Lion WC) tech. fall Timothy Lambert (Sunkist Kids), 10-0

61 kg/134 lbs.
1st - Mitchell McKee (Minnesota Storm) dec. Isaac Jimenez (Air Force RTC), two matches to none
Bout One – McKee tech. fall Jimenez, 11-0
Bout Two – McKee tech. fall Jimenez, 15-4
3rd – Josh Terao (DCAC) tech. fall Steven Polakowski (Minnesota Storm), 10-0

65 kg/143 lbs.
1st - Joey McKenna (LVWC/TMWC) dec. Boo Lewallen (CRTC/TMWC), two matches to none
Bout One – McKenna dec. Lewallen, 5-1
Bout Two – McKenna dec. Lewallen, 8-4
3rd – Jaydin Eierman (Missouri Wrestling RTC) dec. Brock Zacherl (Clarion WC), 5-4

70 kg/154 lbs.
1st - Richard Lewis (Scarlett Knight WC) dec. Tyler Berger (Sunkist Kids), two matches to none
Bout One – Lewis dec. Berger, 6-2
Bout Two – Lewis dec. Berger, 7-1
3rd – Grant LaMont (Utah Valley RTC) tech. fall Matthew Zovistoski (App State RTC), 10-0

74 kg/163 lbs.
1st - Isaiah Martinez (Illinois RTC) dec. Chance Marsteller (Titan Mercury WC), two matches to none
Bout One – Martinez dec. Marsteller, 8-1
Bout Two – Martinez dec. Marsteller, 7-6

86 kg/189 lbs.
1st - Samuel Brooks (NYAC/Hawkeye WC) dec. Myles Martin (Ohio State/Ohio RTC/TMWC), two matches to none
Bout One – Brooks dec. Martin, 9-5
Bout Two – Brooks dec. Martin, 13-8
3rd – Brett Pfarr (Minnesota Storm) tech. fall over Jaron Smith (Terrapin WC), 10-0

97 kg/213 lbs.
1st - Ty Walz (VT/Southeast RTC) dec. Daniel Chaid (Tarheel WC), two matches to none
Bout One – Walz dec. Chaid, 8-1
Bout Two – Walz tech. fall Chaid, 10-0
3rd – Riley Lefever (Nittany Lion WC) tech. fall Nikko Reyes (Valley RTC), 12-1

125 kg/275 lbs.
1st - Michael Kroells (Minnesota Storm) dec. Youssif Hemida (Terrapin WC), two matches to none
Bout One – Kroells tech. fall Hemida, 10-0
Bout Two – Kroells dec. Hemida, 9-4
3rd – Joey Goodhart (Drexel/PRTC) dec. Michael Kosoy (Wolfpack WC), 7-5

Greco Roman results

59 kg/130 lbs.
1st - Dalton Roberts (NYAC/NMU-OTS) dec. Randon Miranda (NYAC/NMU-OTS), two matches to none
Bout One – Roberts dec. Miranda, 8-4
Bout Two – Roberts dec. Miranda, 11-10
3rd – Dalton Young (Stanford – unattached) tech. fall Kyndall Rutz (NMU-OTS), 10-1

71 kg/156 lbs.
1st - Alex Mossing (Air Force RTC) dec. Colin Schubert (NYAC/NMU-OTS), two matches to none
Bout One – Mossing pin Schubert, 3:39
Bout Two – Mossing dec. Schubert, 8-8
3rd – Lenny Merkin (Princeton WC) tech. fall Logan Kass (NMU-OTS), 17-9

80 kg/176 lbs.
1st - Kamal Bey (Sunkist Kids) dec. Thomas Brackett (unattached), two matches to none
Bout One – Bey tech. fall Brackett, 8-0
Bout Two – Bey tech. fall Brackett, 8-0
3rd – Carter Nielsen (NMU-OTS) dec. Alex Meyer (Hawkeye WC), 7-2

130 kg/286 lbs.
1st - G’Angelo Hancock (Sunkist Kids) dec.Alton Meeks (Florida Jets), two matches to none
Bout One – Hancock tech. fall Meeks, 8-0
Bout Two – Hancock Pin Meeks, 3:46
3rd – David Tate Orndorff (Utah Valley RTC) dec. Michael Rogers (NYAC/OTC), 6-3