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|Eight repeat as champions at Veterans Greco-Roman Nationals|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
Eight wrestlers were able to repeat as champions from last year at the Veterans National Greco-Roman Championships held at the Las Vegas Convention Center on April 4.
The champions who were able to repeat were:
- David Nowick of Team Gumby, Div. B at 138.75 lbs.
- Kevin Pine of Vegas West, Div. B at 167.5 lbs.
- Mark Levasseur of the Minnesota Storm, Div. C at 127.75 lbs.
- Ronald Hughes, unattached, Div. C at 152 lbs.
- Anthony Porcelli of Team Porcelli, Div. C at 187.25 lbs.
- Kevin Ida, unattached, Div. D at 127.75 lbs.
- Bruce Moe, unattached, Div. D at 167.5 lbs.
- Sarkis Dermenjian of SK Golden Boys at 214 lbs.
Hughes, from Hollister Calif., a past Veterans World champion in Greco-Roman, won his weight by beating Charles Elliot of Valley in a best-of-three series. Hughes won them both by technical fall. He beat Elliott, 6-0, 6-0 in bout one, then stopped him 6-0, 8-0 in bout two.
Winning a Veterans National title for the second straight week was John Silver of the Westside Warriors, who won the 138.75 pound title in Div. D in Greco-Roman. Last week, Silver won a gold medal at the Veterans Folkstyle Nationals in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
The biggest change in the program were the new age groups this year: Div. A (25-32 years), Div. B (33-40 years), Div. C (41-48 years), Div. D (49-55 years) and Div E (56 years and over).
The individual champions in Div. A were Kalhor Fadaiekalhor, unattached (152), Sarkis Cholakyan of S.K. Golden Boys (187.25), Ben McCrillis of New England All-Stars (214) and Khoren Papoyan of S.K. Golden Boys (286.5).
McCrillis won both of his matches by fall, pinning Jason Fincher of the Palm Desert Enforcers in 1:04 of the second period, then stopping Jason Blakeman of the Channel Coast Pirates in 1:20 of the second period. He lost the first period in both of those bouts.
Other individual winners in Div. B were Michael Tuck of Team Central-KC (127.75), Jeff Mustari, unattached (152), Rodney Fisher of the Spartan WC (187.25), Ramon Diaz of Jets/No Limits (214) and Tyrone Abercrombe, unattached (286.5).
Diaz had two falls, pinning Alex Porcelli of Team Porcell in the second period at 1:31 and putting away Mark Mireles of Centurian Wrestling in the second period as well in 52 seconds.
Div. C individual champions included Randy Geiger, unattached (138.75), Steve Horton of the Air Force (167.5), James Kiernan of Centurian Wrestling (214) and Tom Handrick of Lakeland WC (286.5).
Horton, who was a talented Senior level Greco-Roman wrestler for many years, has not competed in recent Veterans Nationals due to being deployed to Iraq with the Air Force. He will return shortly after this tournament for another tour of duty there.
Another champion in Div. D were Ray Lofti of the West Houston WC (286).
In Division E, the champions featured George Bancroft III of JC Wrestling at 138.75 pounds, Jim Lucas of the Spartan WC at 152 pounds, Kenneth Peters of the Elmhurst Dukes WC, John Matthews of TWC at 187.25 pounds, Robert Musante of Sherriffs League at 214 pounds and Rex Febus of Pitbull WC at 286.25 pounds.
Matthews was an Olympic and World Team member in Greco-Roman when he competed on the Senior level.