Greco-Roman wrestlers from Northern Michigan University National Training Site win at Under-23 nationals
MARQUETTE — Three Greco-Roman wrestlers from the National Training Site at Northern Michigan University won their weight divisions at the Under-23 Nationals held on May 27 in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Their wins mean they have earned a spot on USA Wrestling’s U23 World Team that will compete in Belgrade, Serbia, in November.
The three NMU winners were David Stepanian at 63 kilograms (138.9 pounds), Alston Nutter at 67 kg (147.7 lbs.) and Benji Peak at 72 kg (158.7 lbs.).
NMU NTS Greco-Roman head coach Andy Bisek was pleased with his team’s 11 top-eight finishes.
“The team wrestled well,” the coach said. “They faced tough opponents and made great in-match adjustments to secure their spots.”
Peak was named the tournament’s outstanding wrestler for outscoring his opponents 43-1. In his best-of-three championship round, Peak won both his matches over 2019 World Team member Lenny Merkin, who was wrestling out of the New York Athletic Club.
Peak won match one with a fall of Merkin at exactly the 1-minute mark, while he won the second match by technical fall with a score of 10-1.
Nutter made his third age-group World Team. The 2019 Junior World bronze medalist defeated Jaden Enriquez of the Michigan Wrestling Club 9-6 and 8-5 in his championship round.
Stepanian defeated 2020 Senior National finalist Mosha Schwartz of the Northern Colorado Wrestling Club 5-2 and 8-3 in his finale.
The other eight top finishers for NMU were George Sikes, second place at 82 kg (180.8 lbs.); Keaton Fanning, fourth at 97 kg (213.8 lbs.); Lydell Canady, fifth at 67 kg; Brody Olson, sixth at 77 kg (169.8 lbs.); Rafaele Masi, eighth at 60 kg (132.3 lbs.); Nick Leonetti, eighth at 67 kg; Julian Beltran, eighth at 77 kg; and DM Hallett, eighth at 82 kg.
Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.