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Williams and Copass repeat, Bouzakis wins OW in USMC 16U Nationals finals

By JD Rader, USA Wrestling, | July 15, 2019, 6:43 p.m. (ET)

Nic Bouzakis of Florida had dominating tournament and earned the Outstanding Wrestler Award. Photo by John Sachs.

FARGO, N.D. - Nic Bouzakis of Florida put together a performance that earned him the Outstanding Wrestler Award. The 126 pounder went 7-0 with four tech falls and three pins. His finals opponent, Ramon Ramos of Arizona, was more than game. Bouzakis led 10-9 and was only able to secure the fall when Ramos threw himself to his back in the closing seconds.

Jordan Williams of Oklahoma repeated as 16U National champion when he defeated Zeke Seltzer of Indiana 6-5 in the 120 lbs. finals. Down 4-5 with 10 seconds left, Williams hit an arm drag and was able to get Seltzer down from the quad-pod position to secure the victory. Williams proved he can win under pressure as he had to use last second points in his Rd. of 16 and quarterfinal matches as well. 

Hayden Copass of Illinois also repeated as a 16U National champion. The heavyweight had a dominating tournament, winning every match by tech fall or pin.

With two champions and twelve total All-Americans, Pennsylvania is your men’s freestyle 2019 16U Nationals team champions.

Leonard Pinto at 170 lbs. and Kolby Franklin at 220 lbs. were the champions for Pa. Pinto tech falled his way to the semifinals where he beat 2018 Fargo champion Tate Picklo of Oklahoma and then defeated this year’s UWW Cadet WTT runner-up Rylan Rogers of Washington 7-1 in the finals. Franklin, a runner-up in freestyle at this tournament last year, defeated Dustin Swanson also of Pennsylvania 10-0 in the finals. His closest match of the tournament came in the quarterfinals, where he defeated third place finisher Chase Horne of Georgia 7-2. 

Wilfred Tanefeu of North Dakota had an incredible breakout tournament at 113 lbs. Relatively unknown outside of North Dakota, Tanefeu defeated Oregon state champion and tenth ranked nationally Gabe Whisenhunt 10-0 in the finals.

The first two matches of the afternoon didn’t take long with Braeden Davis of Michigan and Cael Hughes of Oklahoma both picking up tech falls at 88 lbs. and 94 lbs.

At 100 lbs., Jore Volk’s gut wrench proved to be the difference maker. Down 5-5 on criteria with 30 seconds left, Volk was able to get a reversal, lock up a trap arm gut wrench and expose Horwath three times to win 12-5. 

One sequence is what one the match for Daniel Cardenas of Colorado in the 132 lbs. final. After getting down 4-0 early, Cardenas got a takedown and four gut wrenches to go up 10-4. Antrell Taylor of Nebraska was able to pick up four more points, but it wasn’t enough as Cardenas won 10-8.

John Wiley was Oklahoma’s third and final champion of the afternoon. Wiley used a big chin whip throw and a variety of takedowns/turns to defeat Nicholas Vafiadis of Virginia 10-4 in an exciting match. 

Dean Hamiti Jr. of Illinois picked up his fourth fall of the tournament when he stuck 2019 UWW Cadet WTT runner-up Matthew Singleton of Georgia in the 145 lbs. finals. In his six matches, Hamiti only had to get out of the first period twice.

Stoney Buell defeated Manuel Rojas in an all Michigan final at 152 lbs. Rojas was able to get two takedowns in the last 30 seconds, but it was too little too late as Buell won 5-4.

Thomas Stewart won Maryland’s lone freestyle title of the year and twelfth all time at 160 lbs. when he defeated Mac Stout of Pennsylvania 5-0. Stewart picked up four points on a single leg and gut wrench almost immediately. The only remaining point scored was on a caution for hands to the face.

Bennett Berge helped Minnesota edge out Ohio by one team point when he defeated Michael Tal-Shahar of Florida in the 182 lbs. finals. Bennett used a couple of leg laces as time expired in the first period to win 10-0.

Seth Shumate of Ohio ended Indiana’s Evan Bates’ solid run at 195 lbs. Shumate’s five matches ended by tech fall or pin four times. 

At Fargo, N.D., July 12-19

16U men’s freestyle results

1st - Braeden Davis (Michigan) TF Alan Koehler (Minnesota), 10-0 2:23
3rd - Kolby Warren (Missouri) DEC Grigor Cholakyan (California), 4-0
5th - Caleb Thoennes (Minnesota) TF Hunter Taylor (Kansas), 10-0 0:37
7th - Kyison Garcia (Utah) TF Benjamin Bast (Wisconsin), 10-0 0:43

1st - Cael Hughes (Oklahoma) TF Dillon Campbell (Ohio), 12-2 3:43
3rd - Tristan Stafford (Arkansas) DEC Codie Cuerbo (Ohio), 10-8
5th - Jaden Pepe (Pennsylvania) TF Paul Kelly (Arizona), 12-2 2:53
7th - Coleman Nogle (Maryland) TF Christopher Martino (Idaho), 14-3 3:16

1st - Jore Volk (Minnesota) DEC Caden Horwath (Michigan), 12-5
3rd - Kannon Webster (Illinois) DEC Kai Owen (Florida), 10-1
5th - Beau Mantanona (California) DEC Christian Forbes (Oklahoma), 3-1
7th - Darrell Rochester (Georgia) DEC Koy Buesgens (Minnesota), 5-2

1st - Evan Tallmadge (New Jersey) DEC Mitchell Neiner (Washington), 10-8
3rd - Carter Mccallister (Missouri) TF Sean Seefeldt (Ohio), 10-0 1:17
5th - Charlie Farmer (Illinois) DEC Joseph Fernau (Illinois), 5-4
7th - Greyson Clark (Wisconsin) TF Trever Anderson (Iowa), 10-0 2:27

1st - Wilfried Tanefeu (North Dakota) TF Gabe Whisenhunt (Oregon), 10-0 1:29
3rd - Nash Singleton (Oregon) TF Levi Haines (Pennsylvania), 10-0 2:00
5th - Brady Hankin (Colorado) FALL Brock Bobzien (California), 6-2 1:30
7th - Damian Mendez (Kansas) dec Trae Mcdaniel (Tennessee), 7-4

1st - Jordan Williams (Oklahoma) dec Zeke Seltzer (Indiana), 6-5
3rd - Brennan Van hoecke (Florida) TF Nicolar Rivera (Wisconsin), 10-0 0:33
5th - Rocco Welsh (Pennsylvania) TF Garrett Grice (Nebraska), 12-2 3:20
7th - Jacob Mann (Missouri) VFO Zachary Espalin (Arizona)

1st - Nic Bouzakis (Florida) FALL Ramon Ramos (Arizona), 12-9 4:00
3rd - Kyren Butler (Ohio) DEC Ismael Ayoub (Ohio), 8-4
5th - Derrick Cardinal (Minnesota) TF Ethan Stiles (Illinois), 10-0 2:53
7th - Alejandro Herrera-rondon (Pennsylvania) DEC Eli Rocha (Missouri), 10-5

1st - Daniel Cardenas (Colorado) TF Antrell Taylor (Nebraska), 10-8
3rd - Matthew Bianchi (Wisconsin) DEC Michael Kilic (Georgia), 7-2
5th - Mitchell Mesenbrink (Wisconsin) DEC Jack Crook (Florida), 6-2
7th - Jack Milos (Illinois) DEC Kage Lenger (Missouri), 9-5

1st - John Wiley (Oklahoma) DEC Nicholas Vafiadis (Virginia), 10-4
3rd - Cody Chittum (Tennessee) FALL Joshua Barr (Michigan), 4-2 1:46
5th - Nick Hamilton (Iowa) DEC Thor Michaelson (Washington), 2-1
7th - Preston Owens (Idaho) DEC Cole Becker (Minnesota), 7-0

1st - Dean Hamiti jr (Illinois) FALL Matthew Singleton (Georgia), 6-2 1:25
3rd - Paniro Johnson (Pennsylvania) TF Cael Berg (Minnesota), 13-0 3:19
5th - Gavin Brown (Ohio) TF Cj Hamblin (Washington), 11-2
7th - Erik Gibson (Pennsylvania) DEC Travis Ragland (Virginia), 10-6

1st - Stoney Buell (Michigan) DEC Manuel Rojas (Michigan), 5-4
3rd - Robert Weston (Georgia) DEC Tyler Lillard (Ohio), 9-5
5th - Kamdyn Munro (Georgia) VFO Hunter Lyden (Minnesota)
7th - Jared Simma (Kansas) FALL Brayden Thompson (Illinois), 4-0 0:39

1st - Thomas Stewart (Maryland) DEC Mac Stout (Pennsylvania), 5-0
3rd - Clayton Whiting (Wisconsin) DEC Bradley Gillum (Illinois), 2-2
5th - Cayleb Atkins (Kansas) DEC Drake Buchanan (Indiana), 7-6
7th - Nicholas Hall (Delaware) TF Dawson Mathews (Georgia), 19-9 4:00

1st - Leonard Pinto (Pennsylvania) DEC Rylan Rogers (Washington), 7-1
3rd - Tate Picklo (Oklahoma) DEC Branson Britten (Texas), 9-4
5th - Gavin Nelson (Minnesota) DEC Evan Canoyer (Nebraska), 3-2
7th - Brian Soldano (New Jersey) TF Damion Schunke (South Dakota), 10-0 0:36

1st - Bennett Berge (Minnesota) TF Michael Tal-shahar (Florida), 10-0 3:00
3rd - Nicholas Feldman (Pennsylvania) TF Michael Altomer (New York), 6-0 1:46
5th - Harley Andrews (Oklahoma) TF Isaiah Huus (North Dakota), 11-0 1:19
7th - Jack Darrah (Missouri) DEC Talmage Carman (Utah), 8-2

1st - Seth Shumate (Ohio) TF Evan Bates (Indiana), 11-0 2:49
3rd - Noah Pettigrew (Georgia) DEC David Harper (Georgia), 6-0
5th - Bennett Tabor (Minnesota) DEC Wyatt Voelker (Iowa), 4-2
7th - Kaden Glass (Oklahoma) DEC Ashton Davis (Tennessee), 7-4

1st - Kolby Franklin (Pennsylvania) TF Dustin Swanson (Pennsylvania), 10-0 1:50
3rd - Chase Horne (Georgia) TF Lucas Walker (Iowa), 10-0 2:12
5th - Riley Ucker (Ohio) TF Jaren Rohde (Wisconsin), 17-6 4:00
7th - Nathan Taylor (Pennsylvania) VFO Gage Cook (Washington)

1st - Hayden Copass (Illinois) TF Griffin Liddle (Iowa), 11-1 2:05
3rd - James Howard (Tennessee) DEC Ethan Kremer (Kansas), 7-2
5th - Jacob Barnes (Oregon) DEC Jacob Moore (Arizona), 2-1
7th - Gavin Layton (Minnesota) TF Ryan Elrod (Ohio), 10-0 1:16

Outstanding Wrestler - Nic Bouzakis of Florida, 126 lbs.

Team standings
1. Pennsylvania, 61
2. Minnesota, 51
3. Ohio, 50
4. Georgia, 42
5. Illinois, 40
6. Oklahoma, 39
7. Michigan, 35
8. Florida, 29
9. Wisconsin, 27
10. Washington, 21