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The Body Bar Girls Nationals sees five repeat champions

Michelle Thilges USA Wrestling
04/21/2007


COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. - The Body Bar Women's Nationals, held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center, had events featuring women from all ages. One of the most intense age groups was the Girls National Championships, which featured two divisions for 3-6th graders and 7-8th graders. These are the youngest athletes in the competition.

This year's tournament was extremely challenging, as only five champions repeated from last year.

Only two repeat champions were in the 3rd-6th grade competition. They are Caroline Cotton of Arizona at 72 pounds and Chelsea Hudson of Colorado at 100 pounds.

Last year, Cotton won the tournament at 69 pounds. She decisioned Katie Agey, of Maroon Mat, 3-0, 4-2 in her first match. In her second she pinned Samantha Richards, of Montana, in 0:22. Cotton pinned her final opponent Natalie Long, of Colorado, in 27 seconds.

Last year's champion at 85 pounds, Hudson did it again this year at 96 pounds. Hudson defeated Aerial Groene, of Kansas, 7-4, 6-0 and went on to beat Chantelle Lemus, of Wyoming, 6-0, 10-0.

In a match up between two champions from last year, Reni Gallan of Arizona pinned Cassidy Ferrell in 0:37 seconds. Last year Gallan was champion at 63 pounds, and Ferrell, of Pennsylvania, was champion at 57 pounds. Both were in the 60 pound weight class this year. Gallan was unable to repeat, however, as she placed second this year behind Teshya Alo of Hawaii.

Virginia Burkett of Wyoming, came out strong as she placed this at 90 pounds. Burkett pinned Alexis Porter, of New York, in 1:58. She went on to technical fall Hayley Love, of Wyoming, 6-0, 8-1.

In the 7-8th grade division repeat champions included: Jenna Burkert of New York at 103 pounds, Shelby Bowman of Kansas at 190 pounds and Erin English of Ohio at 163 pounds.

Burkert pinned both of her opponents in under a minute in the first period. Her first win came over Victoria Kinsey, of Oklahoma, in 34 seconds and her second pin was over Morgan O'Rourke, of Pennsylvania, in 0:22. Burket won last year's competition at 189 pounds.

Bowman, who placed third at last year's tournament at 186 pounds, tore through her weight class of 190 pounds when she pinned Emily Smith, of Wyoming, and Heidi Schmillen, of Wyoming. Bowman pinned Smith in the second period at 0:41 and Schmillen in the first period at 0:51.

English won the tournament last year at 138 pounds and pinned both of her opponents in this year's tournament.

Kayla Marano competed in her first national tournament this weekend, placing third in the 68-pound weight class in grades 3-6. Marano's mother is two time World champion Kristie Marano, who later provided a free wrestling clinic sponsored by Body Bar for all the participants at the event.
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