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|Lampe wins Outstanding Wrestler, and USOEC has five champions at Body Bar FILA Junior Nationals|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. - Alyssa Lampe (Tomahawk, Wis./USOEC) won the 48 kg/105.5 lbs. title and was named Outstanding Wrestler at the Body Bar FILA Junior Women's National Championships held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.
Lampe defeated 2006 Junior World champion Nicole Woody (Odenton, Md./New York AC) in the finals, 7-0, 4-0. Lampe was fifth at the U.S. Senior Nationals earlier this year and was a 2006 Junior Nationals runner-up. Lampe also won three matches in her pool competition, scoring a pin and two technical falls.
Woody was competing up a weight class from last year, when she won her World title at 44 kg/97 lbs.
"I have improved a lot in my freestyle," said Lampe. "Northern Michigan Univ. has helped me a lot. We have great training partners and good coaches. I felt really good out there. I worked hard. I knew I was ready for this. Having college experience helps a lot and wrestling freestyle all season is also an advantage."
Champions in all weight classes (except 79.5 kg) qualify for the U.S. Junior World Team, which will compete in Beijing, China,
Winning the FILA Junior Nationals for the second straight year, and qualifying for another Junior World Team was Deanna Rix (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC) at 63 kg/138.75 lbs. Rix pinned Veronica Carlson (Addison, Ill./Addison Trails WC) in 53 seconds of the first period. Rix was sixth at the 2007 Senior U.S. Nationals
"I didn't think I was as in good shape as I wanted to be," said Rix. "I have been off the mat since Las Vegas (at the U.S. Nationals) because of my knee. My toughest match was with Bethany Harris who was in my pool. I beat her 1-0, 3-0 and it was very close."
Last year, Rix competed at 59 kg/130 lbs. and missed weight at the Junior World Championships in Guatemala.
"I am very excited about the World Championships," said Rix. "I want to redeem myself from last year. I won't have to worry about weight, as I not cutting any now. This is my last year as a Junior. I want to win the World title."
It was a strong tournament for the U.S. Olympic Education Program at Northern Michigan Univ., which crowned five individual champions
Capturing the 112.25-pound title was Whitney Conder (Payallup, Wash./USOEC), who stopped LeAnn Barney (Univ. of the Cumberlands) in the finals, 1-0, 6-0. Both of these wrestlers were placewinners at the U.S. Senior Nationals this year, with Barney placing third and Conder capturing eighth. Conder was second at the FILA Junior Nationals last year.
The USOEC champion at 55 kg/121 lbs. was a bit of a surprise, as Cherae Pascua (Oahu, Hawaii/USOEC) won a loaded weight class. She defeated Joey Miller (Woodward, Okla./Oklahoma Bad Girlz) in the championship finals, 2-0, 1-0. Miller, who has won a number of age-group national titles, was a member of the Senior Women's Team USA last year.
Pascua, who was fifth in last year's FILA Junior Nationals and Junior Nationals, has improved dramatically this year. In her opening match, she stopped Melina Hutchison of Team Alaska, a 2006 FILA Cadet National champion and Junior National champion.
Erin Clodgo (Richmond, Vermont/USOEC) became the champion at 67 kg/158.5 lbs., defeating 2004 U.S. Nationals champion Na'Tasha Umemoto (Portland, Ore./USA Cobra) in the finals with a third-period pin, 3-3, 1-0, 1:11. Clodgo was a 2006 Junior Nationals champion, and is in her first year with the USOEC program while still attending high school.
Winning the 72 kg/158.5 lbs. division was Paige Rife (Fowlerville, Mich./USOEC), who won a five-athlete roundrobin with four wins. Included was a third-period pin over runner-up Melissa Simmons (Ridgefield, Wash./USA Cobra), 0-1, 1-1, 1:51. Rife was second at the 2006 Junior Nationals.
"We won every weight class we entered," said USOEC head coach Shannyn Gillespie. "Our program was created to make Junior World and Senior World Teams. Last year, we had two champions here. This year we had five. Every year, we are getting better."
Gillespie had special praise for Clodgo, who is a junior at Marquette High School after moving to the program from Vermont.
"Erin was wrestling athletes who were much older than her," said Gillespie. "The youngest kid on the team won a national title. She has shown good things all year."
Amy Whitbeck (Duanesburg, N.Y./Team New York) captured the 97 pound division, winning a five-athlete round-robin with a 4-0 record. She won four matches, capturing every period of her competition. Among her victories was a 1-0, 3-0 decision over runner-up Michelle Quiles (Sheridan, N.Y./Fredonia).
Whitbeck was a 2006 FILA Cadet Nationals champion, and was third at last year's Junior Nationals. She dropped down in weight for the opportunity to compete on her first U.S. World Team.
The champion at 59 kg/130 lbs. was Tatiana Padilla (LaVerne, Calif./California Grapplers), who pinned Amberle Montgomery (Vision Quest) in the finals in 1:23. Padilla was a FILA Cadet National champion and Junior National champion in 2006, and she placed fourth at the U.S. Senior Nationals this year.
Winning the 79.5 kg/175 lbs. division was Amy Havens (Paradise, Calif./Missouri Valley College), who won a best-of-three series against Dallas Monriel-Berner (Niles, Ill./USOEC). Havens won the first match 4-0, 2-0, then captured the second match 2-0, 1-0. Havens was a 2006 Junior Nationals champion, and Monriel-Berner was second at the 2006 Junior Nationals, competing at different weight classes. This is a weight class that is not contested at the Junior World Championships.
In addition to the U.S. Nationals, there were six True Second Place Matches.
If the tournament runner-up and third place finishers did not face each other, a True Second Place bout is held. The winner becomes the alternate at the weight class for the Junior World Team. The FILA Junior Nationals results do not change.
True Second Place Matches
48 kg/105.5 lbs. - Jackie Stiles (Univ. of the Cumberlands) dec. Nicole Woody (New York AC), 1-0, 1-1, 3-1
51 kg/112.25 lbs. - Le Ann Barney (Univ. of the Cumberlands) dec. Katherine Fulp-Allen (Menlo College), 2-0, 2-0
55 kg/121 lbs. - Michaela Hutchison (Team Alaska) inj. dft. over Joey Miller (New York AC), 0:00
59 kg/130 lbs. - Amberlee Montgomery (Vision Quest) dec. Rachel Hubbard (Univ. of the Cumberlands), 6-0, 2-1
63 kg/138.75 lbs. - Veronica Carlson (Addison Trail) dec. Bethany Harris (Univ. of the Cumberlands), 1-0, 0-1, 1-0
67 kg/147.5 lbs. - Amberlee Ebert (Missouri Valley College) inj. dft. over Na'Tasha Umemoto (USA Cobra), 0:00