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Talented U.S. athletes from many clubs and RTCs will be competing in Cuba, Feb. 17-22

By Gary Abbott and JD Rader, USA Wrestling | Feb. 16, 2019, 1:30 p.m. (ET)

Patrick Downey turns Kenneth Courts at the Dave Schultz Memorial International in January. Both are expected to compete in Cuba next week. Photo by John Sachs,

A group of U.S. Senior-level athletes, representing their club and/or Regional Training Center, will be competing at the Granma Cup/Cerro Pelado International in Havana, Cuba this coming week.

This tournament includes competition in each of the three Olympic disciplines, Greco-Roman, women’s freestyle and men’s freestyle. The tournament starts with Greco-Roman for two days, women’s freestyle for the next two days, and men’s freestyle on the last two days.

Among the national clubs sending athletes are the Titan Mercury WC, the Sunkist Kids, the New York AC, the Lehigh Valley WC and the Minnesota Storm.

Among the RTCs where these athletes train include the Hawkeye WC, the Wolfpack RTC, the Pennsylvania RTC, the NYC RTC, the Oklahoma RTC, the Cyclone RTC, the Nebraska WTC, the Valley RTC and others.

Some of the nation’s top club and RTC coaches will be with the athletes.

Clubs and RTCs have worked together to organize this trip. Additional athletes or lineup changes are possible, depending upon decisions of the clubs involved. USA Wrestling will do its best to report on the results, based upon updates from the clubs and RTCs.

One National Team member is expected on the tour based upon the preliminary roster, Kyven Gadson (Ames, Iowa/Sunkist Kids/Cyclone RTC) at 97 kg/213 lbs. in men’s freestyle.

Ten of the athletes on the preliminary roster, as reported to USA Wrestling, won medals at the recent Dave Schultz Memorial International.
• Ben Whitford (Saint Johns, Mich./TMWC) at 61 kg, bronze at Schultz
• Evan Henderson (New York City, N.Y./TMWC/NYCRTC) at 65 kg, silver at Schultz
• Brandon Sorensen (Iowa City, Iowa/TMWC/Hawkeye WC) at 70 kg, silver at Schultz
• Dan Vallimont (Philadelphia, Pa./NYAC/Pennsylvania RTC) at 74 kg, silver at Schultz
• Joey LaVallee (Columbia, Mo./TMWC) at 74 kg, bronze at Schultz
• Patrick Downey (Baltimore, Md./TMWC) at 86 kg, gold at Schultz
• Kenneth Courts (Harrisburg, Pa./TMWC) at 86 kg, silver at Schultz
• Brett Pfarr (Minneapolis, Minn./Minnesota Storm) at 86 kg, bronze at Schultz
• Blaize Cabell (Fresno, Calif./TMWC/Valley RTC) at 97 kg, silver at Schultz
• Dom Bradley (Lincoln, Neb./Sunkist Kids/Nebraska WTC) at 125 kg, bronze at Schultz

at Havana, Cuba, Feb., 17-22

Tentative U.S. Men’s Freestyle entries

57 kg/125 lbs. – Frank Perrelli (Charlottesville, Va./TMWC)
61 kg/134 lbs. – Cory Clark (Iowa City, Iowa/TMWC/Hawkeye WC)
61 kg/134 lbs. – Ben Whitford (Saint Johns, Mich./TMWC)
65 kg/143 lbs. – Dean Heil (Buies Creek, N.C./TMWC/Buies Creek RTC)
65 kg/143 lbs. – Evan Henderson (New York City, N.Y./TMWC/NYCRTC)
65 kg/143 lbs. – Jayson Ness (Minneapolis, Minn./Minnesota Storm)
70 kg/154 lbs. – David Carr (Canton, Ohio/Iowa State-unattached)
70 kg/154 lbs. – Anthony Collica (Norman, Okla./TMWC)
70 kg/154 lbs. – Tommy Gantt (Raleigh, N.C./TMWC/Wolfpack RTC)
70 kg/154 lbs. – Mario Mason (Morris Plains, N.J./LVWC)
70 kg/154 lbs. – Chase Pami (Philadelphia, Pa./Sunkist Kids/Pennsylvania RTC)
70 kg/154 lbs. – Brandon Sorensen (Iowa City, Iowa/TMWC/Hawkeye WC)
70 kg/154 lbs.- Justin DeAngelis (Norman, Okla./OKRTC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Joey LaVallee (Columbia, Mo./TMWC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Lavion Mayes (New York City, N.Y./NYCRTC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Dan Vallimont (Philadelphia, Pa./NYAC/Pennsylvania RTC)
79 kg/174 lbs. – Lee Davis (Raleigh, N.C./Wolfpack RTC)
86 kg/189 lbs. – Sammy Brooks (Iowa City, Iowa/New York AC/Hawkeye WC)
86 kg/189 lbs. – Kenneth Courts (Harrisburg, Pa./TMWC)
86 kg/189 lbs. – Patrick Downey (Baltimore, Md./TMWC)
86 kg/189 lbs. – Brett Pfarr (Minneapolis, Minn./Minnesota Storm)
92 kg/202.5 lbs. – Timmy McCall (Raleigh, N.C./TMWC/Wolfpack RTC)
97 kg/213 lbs. – Blaize Cabell (Fresno, Calif./TMWC/Valley RTC)
97 kg/213 lbs. – Kyven Gadson (Ames, Iowa/Sunkist Kids/Cyclone RTC)
125 kg/275.5 lbs. – Dom Bradley (Lincoln, Neb./Sunkist Kids/Nebraska WTC)
125 kg/275.5 lbs. – Tanner Hall (Tempe, Ariz./Sunkist Kids/Arizona State)

U.S. Greco-Roman entries
72 kg/158.5 lbs. – Nick Tarpley (Colorado Springs, Colo./NYAC)

International Athlete with U.S. RTC
74 kg/163 lbs. – Nestor Taffur Jr. (Colombia) lives in New York, N.Y. (NYCRTC)

Royce Alger (Iowa City, Iowa/Titan Mercury WC)
Jeff Buxton (Bethlehem, Pa./Lehigh Valley Wrestling Club)
Mark Perry (Iowa City, Iowa/Hawkeye WC)
Dustin Schlatter (Minneapolis, Minn./Minnesota Storm)
Brandon Slay (Philadelphia, Pa./Pennsylvania RTC)

Event schedule

Sunday, Feb. 17
Granma Cup – Greco-Roman preliminaries (all weights)

Monday, Feb. 18

Granma Cup – Greco-Roman finals (all weights)

Tuesday, Feb. 19
Cerro Pelado International – Women’s freestyle preliminaries (all weights)

Wednesday, Feb. 20
Cerro Pelado International – Women’s freestyle preliminaries (all weights)

Thursday, Feb. 21
Cerro Pelado International – Men’s freestyle preliminaries (all weights)

Friday, Feb. 22
Cerro Pelado International – Men’s freestyle preliminaries (all weights)