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Olympic medalist Coleman Scott among four U.S. entries at Ivan Yargyin Grand Prix in Russia

Coleman Scott of the USA competing in the 60 kg bronze-medal match at the 2012 Olympic Games. John Sachs photo

KRASNOYARSK, Russia - The United States will enter a small but talented men’s freestyle team in the 2012 Ivan Yarygin Memorial Grand Prix in Krasnoyarsk, Russia, Jan. 25-27.

The Ivan Yarygin Memorial Grand Prix is considered one of the most challenging international events in the world each year, and will include top athletes from World champion Russia as well as many of the world’s best wrestling nations. The event, which features men’s and women’s freestyle, is named in honor of the late Ivan Yarygin, an Olympic champion athlete, former Soviet Union freestyle coach and past Russian Wrestling Federation president.

Leading the U.S. delegation is 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Coleman Scott (Stillwater, Okla./Titan Mercury WC) at 60 kg/132 lbs. It will be Scott’s first international competition since winning the Olympic bronze medal this past summer in London, England. Scott won a gold medal at the 2012 World Cup, and had his best international season ever. He is a past NCAA champion for Oklahoma State.

Also on the tour is 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials runner-up Brent Metcalf (Iowa City, Iowa/New York AC) at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. Metcalf was a member of the 2010 U.S. World Team. Metcalf placed fifth at the 2010 Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix, and was a champion at the 2011 Olympic Test Event in England. He won two NCAA titles for Iowa.

National Team member Keith Gavin (Columbus, Ohio/Lehigh Valley AC) will compete at 84 kg/185 lbs. Gavin was third at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials, and has been on the national team a number of times. He was an NCAA champion for Pittsburgh.

Also competing is U.S. Olympic Training Center resident athlete Chase Pami (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. Pami won a gold medal at the 2012 New York AC International. He was an NCAA runner-up for Cal-Poly.

The Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix is considered one of the toughest events in the world each year. Only 10 U.S. athletes have ever won this event in men’s freestyle. The last American men’s freestyle champion was Steve Mocco in 2009. All 10 of the winners were Olympians during their career, with six winning Olympic medals and four winning Olympic gold medals.

The U.S. athletes have been in Russia for training prior to the competition this weekend.

At Krasnoyarsk, Russia, Jan. 25-27

U.S. men’s freestyle roster

60 kg/132 lbs. - Coleman Scott, Stillwater, Okla. (Titan Mercury WC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. - Brent Metcalf, Iowa City, Iowa (New York AC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. - Chase Pami, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
84 kg/185 lbs. - Keith Gavin, Columbus, Ohio (Lehigh Valley AC)
National Freestyle Coach – Zeke Jones, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Team Leader – Paul Kieblesz, New York, N.Y.
Referee – Mark Anderson, Augusta, Kan.
Medical - Otis McKenzie

Ivan Yarygin Event Schedule

Friday, January 25
Men’s freestyle 55 kg, 74 kg; Women’s freestyle 51 kg, 59 kg, 67 kg

Saturday, January 26
Men’s freestyle 60 kg, 66 kg; Women’s freestyle 48 kg, 55 kg, 63 kg, 72 kg

Sunday, January 27
Men’s freestyle 84 kg, 96 kg, 120 kg

Yarygin International gold medals for USA in men’s freestyle
Named Krasnoyarsk Tournament through 1993, then named in honor of late Ivan Yarygin

1990 – Jim Scherr; 1991 – Dave Schultz (163); 1991 – Chris Campbell (198); 1992 – Kendall Cross (125.5); 1993 – Tom Brands (136.5); 1993 – Kurt Angle (220); 1998 – Lincoln McIlravy (152); 2005 – Joe Williams (163); 2005 – Daniel Cormier (211.5); 2009 – Steve Mocco (264.5)
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