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2013 Dave Schultz High School Excellence winners announced for all 49 states

STILLWATER, Okla. – In celebration of World Wrestling Month, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame & Museum has selected its 2013 state and regional winners of the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award.

“These student-athletes reflect our sport’s future, an Olympic future that the international wrestling community is attempting to preserve during World Wrestling Month and through the Keep Wrestling in the Olympics campaign,” said Lee Roy Smith, Executive Director of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. “All in wrestling should join FILA, wrestling’s international governing body, in this campaign so that the youth of the world continue to have the opportunity to pursue an Olympic dream, the same dream that fueled the late Dave Schultz for whom this award is named.”

Created in honor of Schultz, an Olympic and world champion, the High School Excellence Award is based on excellence in wrestling, scholastic achievement, citizenship and community service. Forty-nine seniors from those states that sponsor high school state wrestling championships have been chosen for the honor as part of the Hall of Fame’s Educational Outreach Program.

“Each year, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame pays tribute to Dave Schultz by honoring the outstanding youth of our land and by spotlighting the example the legendary wrestler modeled for bringing countries together in the spirit of competition, respect and friendship through wrestling,” Smith said.” The wrestlers selected for this award balance their bodies, minds and wills in the pursuit of excellence on the mat, in the classroom, and in their communities.”

Since the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award’s inception in 1996, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame has recognized 775 wrestlers.

“These student-athletes are role models who influence young people in a very meaningful way,” Smith said. “Statistics show that both male and female students are more likely to stay in school, graduate and become more productive citizens when they participate in extra-curricular activities and after school programs like wrestling.”

The national award winner will be chosen from the regional winners and announced on May 6. The winner will attend the annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony on June 1 to accept the award.

The five regional winners for 2013 are:

Central Region: J’Den Cox is a four-time Missouri High School State Champion with a record of 205-3 at Hickman High School in Columbia, Missouri. In 2012, Cox claimed a USA Wrestling Junior National Freestyle title and placed third in the Greco-Roman division at 220 lbs. He is a member of the A cappella Singers Elite Concert Choir at Hickman H.S., while also serving and performing in the Faith Family Community Church Choir in Fayette, Missouri. Cox will be attending the University of Missouri this fall as a projected heavyweight.

Midwest Region: Adam Coon is a four-time Michigan High School State Champion with a record of 211-3 at Fowlerville High School in Fowlerville, Michigan. In 2012, Coon captured the prestigious USA Wrestling Triple Crown by winning the USA Wrestling National Freestyle and Greco-Roman Championships and Folkstyle Nationals in the 285 wt. class. He also earned a FILA Cadet World Freestyle title in 2011 for the United States at 220 lbs. Coon is a member of the National Honor Society, Student Body President and serves his local church as a youth leader and in outreach programs. He maintains a 4.011 GPA and ranks #2 in his class at Fowlerville H.S. He will attend the University of Michigan this coming fall as a projected heavyweight.

Northeast Region: Zain Retherford is a two-time Pennsylvania High School State Champion with a career record of 130-3 at Benton Area High School in Benton, Pennsylvania. In 2012 Retherford claimed individual titles at the NHSCA Junior National Championships, Ironman Championships, USAW Junior Freestyle National Championships, and was a FILA Cadet World Freestyle Champion. In March of 2013 he was selected as the Outstanding Wrestler of the 2013 Dapper Dan Classic. He has earned Academic Distinguished Honor Roll awards all four years in high school and is a member of the National Honor Roll Society. He is also a member of the Future Farmers of America (FFA) and serves as a volunteer mentor for the Benton Tigers Youth Wrestling Club. Retherford maintains a 4.0 GPA and will be attending Penn State University this coming fall as a projected 141 pounder.

Southeast Region: Kevin Norstrem is a five-time Florida High School State Champion with a career record of 247-3 at Brandon High School in Brandon, Florida. He was a 2011 USA Wrestling Junior Greco-Roman National Champion and a 2011 and 2010 Junior Freestyle All-American. Norstrem frequently volunteers his time to mentor youth at the Brandon School of Wrestling Club and maintains a 5.39 weighted GPA. He will be attending Virginia Tech this coming fall as a projected 133 pounder.

West Region: Isaiah Martinez is a three-time California High School State Champion with a career record of 205-7 at Lemoore High School in Lemoore, California. Martinez claimed the a USA Wrestling Junior National Freestyle title and Greco-Roman All-American honor in 2012 at 160 lbs. He was a USAW Cadet Greco-Roman National Champion and Freestyle All-American in 2010. During his senior year Martinez has volunteered over 40 hours of community service to projects associated with the Lemoore School District. He maintains a 3.3 GPA and will attend the University of Illinois this fall as a projected 165 pounder.

The 2013 Winners by State, Name and School are:

Alabama, Jordan Simpson, Oxford High School
Alaska, Lincoln Johnson, Nikiski High School
Arizona, Dalton Brady, Chandler High School
Arkansas, Tyler Kurz, Cabot High School
California, Isaiah Martinez, Lemoore High School
Colorado, Garet Krohn, Arvada High School
Connecticut, Elliot Antler, Xavier High School
Delaware, Alvontae Drummond, Milford High School
Florida, Kevin Norstrem, Brandon High School
Georgia, Tyler Askey, Northgate High School
Hawaii, Dane Pestano, Kamehameha-Kapalama High School
Idaho, Jared Johnshoy, Melba Jr/Sr High School
Illinois, Ricky Robertson, Carl Sandburg High School
Indiana, Mitch Sliga, Fishers High School
Iowa, Brandon Sorensen, Denver High School
Kansas, Nathan Butler, Leavenworth High School
Kentucky, Kevin Cooper, Simon Kenton High School
Louisiana, Tyrek Malveaux, Comeaux High School
Maine, Connor Sheehan, Fryeburg Academy
Maryland, Garrett Lineberger, Waldorf Thomas Stone High School
Massachusetts, Leo Trindade, Billerica Memorial High School
Michigan, Adam Coon, Fowlerville High School
Minnesota, Jake Short, Simley High School
Missouri, J'Den Cox, Hickman High School
Montana, Taylor French, Forsyth High School
Nebraska, Ronald Wells, Omaha Central High School
Nevada, Joey LaVallee, Reno High School
New Hampshire, Adam Corey, Timberlane High School
New Jersey, Anthony Ashnault, South Plainfield High School
New Mexico, Paul Mascarenas, Cleveland High School
New York, Nick Tighe, John C. Birdlebough High School
North Carolina, Parker VonEgidy, Piedmont High School
North Dakota, Preston Lehmann, West Fargo High School
Ohio, Bo Jordan, Graham High School
Oklahoma, Zach Beard, Tuttle High School
Oregon, Reed Van Anrooy, Roseburg High School
Pennsylvania, Zain Retherford, Benton High School
Rhode Island, Jonah Aurelio, East Providence High School
South Carolina, Dennis Flores, Hanahan High School
South Dakota, Aero Amo, Rapid City Central High School
Tennessee, Kaleb Baker, Christian Brothers High School
Texas, Oliver Pierce, Allen High School
Utah, Grant LaMont, Maple Mountain High School
Vermont, Miguel Calixto, Mount Anthony Union High School
Virginia, Zach Epperly, Christiansburg High School
Washington, Jake Velarde, North Kitsap High School
West Virginia, Justin Arthur, Huntington High School
Wisconsin, Cole Johnson, DeSoto High School
Wyoming, Dani Fisher, Campbell County High School
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