U.S. National Wrestling Championships Set for Las Vegas, Nev., April 24-26; Event to Serve as Major Qualifying Event for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials


(LAS VEGAS, NV) – The 2008 Las Vegas/ASICS United States National Wrestling Championships will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nev., April 24-26. The nation’s best wrestlers in the three Olympic styles of the sport will compete for national titles and all-American honors.

This year, the U.S. Nationals has special significance. It serves as a major qualifying event for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling, which will be hosted at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nev., June 13-15.

The top seven placewinners in each weight class in the men’s freestyle and Greco-Roman tournaments earn a spot at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials. In women’s freestyle wrestling, the top seven placewinners in the four Olympic weight classes, as well as the top four placewinners in the three non-Olympic weight classes earn a spot in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

Numerous Olympians, World medalists and past national champions are expected in the competition.

Members of the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team expected to compete this year include Olympic silver medalist Stephen Abas (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) in men’s freestyle, Olympic silver medalist Sara McMann (Gaffney, S.C./Sunkist Kids) and Olympic bronze medalist Patricia Miranda (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) in women’s freestyle wrestling.

Other past Olympians in the field will include men’s freestyle wrestlers Joe Williams (Belvidere, Ill./Sunkist Kids) and Daniel Cormier (Stillwater, Okla./Sunkist Kids) and Greco-Roman wrestlers Jim Gruenwald (Marquette, Mich./Sunkist Kids), Oscar Wood (Fountain, Colo./U.S. Army) and Brad Vering (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids).

This year, there will be three different nights of gold-medal finals. The women’s freestyle tournament finals will be held on Thursday, April 24. The Greco-Roman finals are set for Friday, April 25. The men’s freestyle finals are set for Saturday, April 26.

Complete coverage of the U.S. National Championships will be updated all three days on TheMat.com (www.themat.com)

2007 U.S. Nationals Champions

Greco-Roman champions
121 - Sam Hazewinkel, Norman, Okla. (Gator WC)
132 - Joe Warren, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
145.5 - Glenn Garrison, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
163 - T.C. Dantzler, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Gator WC)
185 - Brad Vering, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
211.5 - Justin Ruiz, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC
264.5 - Russ Davie, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)

Freestyle champions
121 - Henry Cejudo, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
132 - Nate Gallick, Ames, Iowa (Sunkist Kids)
145.5 - Chris Bono, Ringgold, Ga. (Sunkist Kids)
163 - Joe Heskett, Columbus, Ohio (Gator WC)
185 - Joe Williams, Belvidere, Ill. (Sunkist Kids)
211.5 - Daniel Cormier, Stillwater, Okla. (Gator WC)
264.5 - Tommy Rowlands, Columbus, Ohio (Sunkist Kids)

Women Freestyle champions
105.5 - Stephanie Murata, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
112.25 - Patricia Miranda, New Haven, Conn. (Sunkist Kids)
121 - Marcie Van Dusen, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
130 - Leigh Jaynes, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
138.75 - Sara McMann, Gaffney, S.C. (Sunkist Kids)
147.5 - Katie Downing, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
158.5 - Kristie Marano, Colorado Springs, Colo (New York AC