Top News Stories...
Andrew Howe makes his much anticipated return to competition at University Nationals after tearing his ACL at the 2012 Olympic Team Trials...
Content includes FILA Extraordinary Congress in Moscow, Rumble On The Rails in New York, United 4 Wrestling in Los Angeles, United Nations luncheon, Niagara Falls lineups and more...
Teams from Sweden, Norway, Honduras and the USA are competing in Greco in this World Wrestling Month event. Fans can watch on a live video stream....
The University and FILA Cadet Greco-Roman world team's are set after an eventful day of wrestling in Akron, OH...
|Ruiz victorious in final match, Provisor beats Olympic champ as U.S. falls to Georgia at Curby Cup|
By Jason Bryant USA Wrestling
Justin Ruiz talks with Scott Casber of Takedown Wrestling Media following his victory at the Curby Cup on Saturday night in LaGrange, Ill.
The last month of Justin Ruiz’s life was full of disappointment.
Unable to qualify the United States for the London Olympics at 96kg, there were few chances for Ruiz to go out his own way. At Saturday night’s Curby Cup at Lyons Township in LaGrange, Ill., he seized the opportunity to wrestle his last Greco-Roman match and finish with a resounding slap of the mat.
Ruiz unlaced his shoes and left them in the center of the mat moments after pinning Georgia’s Sosa Jabidze at 1:19 in the third period in Team USA’s 4-3 loss to the visiting Georgians at the third annual event.
“My career – there’s been a lot of ups and downs,” said Ruiz. “I’ve had a lot of support from a lot of amazing people and I’ve been doing it for so long, it’s been my life.
“It’s been a little different now that it’s come to an end, but I’m glad I could wrestle here in the Curby Cup,” he said. “I was pretty disappointed going to the qualifiers and not doing as well as I’d liked, so it was nice to go out on a positive note, especially in the memory of Jacob Curby, who was a teammate.”
Team USA climbed found itself in an 0-2 hole after the first two matches as Lasha Gogitadze stopped Spenser Mango at 55 kg/121 pounds 2-0, 1-0 in a battle of 2008 Olympians and Revaz Lashki topped Dmitry Ryabchinskiy 1-0, 4-0 at 60 kg/132 pounds. Ryabchinskiy was a late replacement for Chicago-area native Ellis Coleman, who was scratched shortly before the event due to an undisclosed injury.
Justin Lester gave the U.S. its first individual victory of the day, avenging last year’s World semifinal loss to Manuchar Tskhadaia 1-0, 3-1 at 66 kg/145.5 pounds. Lester won the first period by defending from the par terre position and in the second period, scored two pushouts and a takedown against the goofy-footed Tskhadaia.
“It makes me kind of want to laugh sometimes when I’m wrestling him,” said Lester. “But you try to stay focused. He gets in his rhythm to try to take you out of your game, but it’s kind of hard to do that with me.”
Lester was optimistic about how the victory can set him up for the London Games.
“It gives me the momentum going in, just in case I have to wrestle him again, and I kind of felt him out a little bit. Now I have a game plan against him and I know what’s going to work.”
Ben Provisor followed Lester’s win with his biggest victory to date, defeating 2008 Olympic Champion and 2003 World Champion Manuchar Kvirkelia 1-0, 1-0 at 74 kg/163 pounds.
Provisor scored points from the neutral position in both periods with a first-period pushout and a second-period takedown to defeat the Georgian, who like Ruiz, was wrestling in his final match.
“That’s the plan going into the Olympics, I’m going to push my pace on my feet the entire time until I get the point and then I’m going hopefully win the match. If I score on my feet, I can do well.”
The win tied the dual up at two bouts apiece heading into the final three bouts, two of which featuring U.S. world medalists.
Vladimer Gegeshidze scored a two points on a first-period gutwrench and then defended in the second to top Chas Betts 2-0, 1-0 at 84 kg/185 pounds to give the Georgian’s a 3-2 lead. The lead would be erased with Ruiz’s fall at 96kg.
With the dual tied at three wins apiece, the U.S. rally would not come to fruition as Guram Pherselidze upended Dremiel Byers 1-0, 3-1 at 120 kg/264.5 pound to clinch the Georgian victory.
Pherselidze used a first-period pushout and a big three point throw in the second to defeat Byers.
2012 CURBY CUP
Lyons Township H.S., LaGrange, Ill.
GEORGIA 4, UNITED STATES 3
55kg/121 pounds - Lasha Gogitadze (GEO) dec. Spenser Mango (USA) 2-0, 1-0.
60kg/132 pounds - Revaz Lashkhi (GEO) dec. Dmitry Ryabchinskiy (USA) 1-0, 4-0.
66kg/145.5 pounds - Justin Lester (USA) dec. Manuchar Tskhadaia (GEO) 1-0, 3-1.
74kg/163 pounds - Ben Provisor (USA) dec. Manuchar Kvirkelia (GEO) 1-0, 1-0.
84kg/185 pounds - Vladimer Gegshidze (GEO) dec. Chas Betts (USA) 2-0, 1-0.
96kg/211 pounds - Justin Ruiz (USA) pin Soso Jabidze (GEO) 1-0, 0-2, 1:19.
120kg/264.5 pounds - Guram Pherselidze (GEO) dec. Dremiel Byers (USA) 1-0, 3-1.
Exhibition: 96kg/211 pounds - Mohammed Abdel Fatah (Egypt) dec. R.C. Johnson (USA) 0-1, 1-0, 3-2.