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|U.S. Nationals preview at 84 kg/185 lbs. in menís freestyle wrestling|
By Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
Andy Hrovat was a surprise member of the U.S. World Team last year after upsetting Mo Lawal in the semifinals of the World Team Trials.
Lawal has moved up a class to 96 kg/211.5 pounds and Hrovat (Ann Arbor, Mich./New York AC) is the wrestler to beat here. Hrovat won the New York AC event and has placed internationally this year in events in the Ukraine, Iran and Russia.
Hrovat's training partner and friend, Clint Wattenberg, also is off to a strong start this year. Wattenberg (Ithaca, N.Y./New York AC) beat veteran Lee Fullhart (Colorado Springs, Colo./Gator WC) in the finals of the Schultz tournament.
Chris Pendleton (Stillwater, Okla./Gator WC) also is in the mix here after winning the Sunkist Kids title by beating Bryce Hasseman (Bloomsburg, Pa./New York AC) in the finals.
Tyrone Lewis (Stillwater, Okla./New York AC) also is a threat here after moving up a class. He narrowly lost to Pritzlaff in the finals of the World Team Trials last year at 74 kg/163 lbs.
Tony Gansen (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) also should be in the mix in this class. Gansen is ranked seventh by TheMat.com and has a recent win over Wattenberg overseas.
Newcomer B.J. Padden (Reno, Nev./Sunkist Kids) is another wrestler to watch here. Padden, a past All-American at 197 for Nebraska, placed fourth at the Schultz event. This is his first year wrestling freestyle full-time.
Padden's former college teammate, Travis Pascoe (Corvallis, Ore./Sunkist Kids), placed fourth in Vegas last year.
Past World medalist and Olympian Joe Williams (DeKalb, Ill./Sunkist Kids) also has moved up to 84 kilos after previously competing at 74 kg/163 lbs. Williams has had success at this weight class, including a gold medal at the Dave Schultz Memorial a few seasons ago.
2006 U.S. NATIONALS RESULTS
1st - Mo Lawal, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Gator WC) dec. Lee Fullhart, Christianburg, Va. (Gator WC), 1-0, 2-0
3rd - Clint Wattenberg, Ithaca, N.Y. (New York AC) dec. Travis Pascoe, Fresno, Calif. (Sunkist Kids), 4-1, 3-0
5th - Andy Hrovat, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC) injury default Greg Jones, Morgantown, W.Va. (Sunkist Kids)
7th - Tony Gansen, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids) dec. Bryce Hasseman, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC), 1-0, 1-1, 2-1
1. Andy Hrovat, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC)
2. Clint Wattenberg, Ithaca, N.Y. (New York AC)
3. Lee Fullhart, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Gator WC)
4. Chris Pendleton, Stillwater, Okla. (Gator WC)
5. Tyrone Lewis, Stillwater, Okla. (Gator WC)
6. Bryce Hasseman, Bloomsburg, Pa. (New York AC)
7. Tony Gansen, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
8. B.J. Padden, Reno, Nev. (Sunkist Kids)
9. Tom Meester, Sioux Falls, S.D. (SMI)
10. Travis Pascoe, Corvallis, Ore. (Sunkist Kids)