Club wrestlers place second in nation
By TERRY JONES
Published April 6, 2007
The Brandon Wrestling Club placed second as a team and won three individual national championships last weekend.
At the USA Wrestling Folkstyle Nationals, 11 Brandon wrestlers recorded the club's best performance ever in that specific competition. More than 2,100 youth wrestlers between the ages of 8 and 15 competed in the Cedar Falls, Iowa, event.
"In 27 years of coaching this club, this is the best performance our kids have recorded in folkstyle," club founder and head coach Russ Cozart said. "They have always done well in freestyle and Greco-Roman [events], but this was a first for us."
Folkstyle wrestling is identical to the wrestling done at the high school level in Florida.
A team from Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., won the team title with 22 competitors and 66 points. The Brandon club finished second, scoring 52 points with just 11 wrestlers.
Rossi Bruno (91 pounds), Dylan Lucas (65 pounds) and Frankie Bruno (60 pounds) all captured gold medals. All the Brandon wrestlers were in brackets with more than 45 competitors.
"Rossi didn't have any serious challenge until his finals, and Dylan breezed through his bracket," Cozart said. "Frankie edged his regular workout partner, Ty Lucas, in the finals. So our club actually had the top two 60-pound wrestlers in the country."
Clark Glass lost in the semifinals, but wrestled back to place third in the 98-pound class. Kevin Norstrem placed second at 90 pounds. Joe Marcano was third at 103 pounds and Kyle Koziel was seventh at 125 pounds.
Dontae McGee, Anthony Artalona and Victor Fugate also competed for the team and contributed points.
Next up for the Brandon youth wrestlers will be the USA Freestyle and Greco-Roman Nationals in early July in Green Bay, Wis.
[Last modified April 5, 2007, 07:14:23]
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