Quarterfinal voting is underway in the 50th Greco-Roman Fantasy installment of the Junior Nationals; help choose the semi-finalists

The Round of 16 concluded in USA Wrestling’s interactive 32-athlete pool, featuring the top junior freestyle Greco-Roman competitors from the past 50 years of Junior Nationals, with the quarterfinals set and voting underway.

This vote is based solely on their national junior freestyle careers and should not reflect their Greco-Roman success, nor their collegiate and international results.

Round of 16 results
Sam Henson (MO) Dec. Taylor LaMont (UT), 70%-30%
Adam Coon (MI) Dec. TJ Hill (Mos), 84% -16%
Justin Ruiz (UT) Dec. Steve Knight (AI), 78% -22%
Brent Metcalf (MI) Dec. Kendrick Sanders (FL), 55%-45%
André Metzger (MI) dec. Pat Lynch (New Jersey), 72%-28%
Garrett Lowney (WI) Dec. Kenny Cox (GOLD), 76% -24%
Brandon Paulson (MN) Dec. Sean Hage (LW), 78%-22%
Dennis Hall (WI) Dec. Matt Nagel (MN), 82% -18%

This sets up competitive quarter-finals, with voting starting today (July 1) and continuing for four days.

Quarter-final pairings, with number of national junior freestyle titles
Sam Henson (MO, 2x) vs. Adam Coon (IM, 3x)
Justin Ruiz (UT, 2x) vs. Brent Metcalf (IM, 3x)
Andre Metzger (IM, 3x) vs. Garrett Lowney (WI, 2x)
Brandon Paulson (MN, 2x) vs Dennis Hall (WI, 3x)

50th Junior Greco-Roman National Championships – Fantasy Bracket

Notes after the Round of 16:
* Michigan tops the list of states with quarterfinalists in the bracket with three, all three-time junior Greco-Roman champions: Andrey Metzger of the 1970s, Brent Metcalf of the 2000s and Adam Coon of the 2010s.
* Wisconsin has two quarter-finalists: Garrett Lowney and Dennis Hall. Other states with quarter-finalists are Missouri (Sam Henson), Utah (Justin Ruiz) and Minnesota (Brandon Paulson)
* The closest round of 16 battle was between two three-time champions, Michigan’s Brent Metcalf and Florida’s Kendrick Sanders. Metcalf scored 55%, while Sanders received 45%. During their careers at the senior level, Sanders competed in Greco-Roman wrestling, while Metcalf wrestled in freestyle.
* Metcalf was the only of the two six-time Junior National Championship champions to advance to the quarter-finals. He won three in freestyle and three in Greco-Roman. The other sextuple, Sean Hage of Georgia, was beaten in the round of 16 by Brandon Paulson of Minnesota.
* Four Olympic medalists reached the quarter-finals. 2016 Greco-Roman Olympic silver medalists Dennis Hall and Brandon Paulson advanced, as did 2000 Greco-Roman Olympic bronze medalist Garrett Lowney and 2000 Olympic freestyle silver medalist Sam Henson.
* Of the eight quarter-finalists, six won senior world medals. Those with Greco-Roman World Medals are Adam Coon, Justin Ruiz, Garrett Lowney, Brandon Paulson and Dennis Hall. Winning a world freestyle medal was Henson. Hall and Henson were senior world champions.
* The quarterfinal match between good friends Dennis Hall and Brandon Paulson brings back memories of their finals streak at the 2004 Olympic Trials in Indianapolis, Ind. They competed at 55 kg. The Championship Series was played over three matches, with the final game being overtime, lasting almost 17 minutes, when Hall scored to win. Many believe it may be the best Greco-Roman Olympic Trials series of all time.

Here are the quarter-final wrestlers in alphabetical order, with their state affiliation and the years they won national junior men’s freestyle titles.
Adam Coon, Michigan (2011, 2012, 2013)
Dennis Hall, Wisconsin (1987, 1988, 1989)
Sam Henson, Missouri (1987, 1988)
Garrett Lowney, Wisconsin (1997, 1998)
Brent Metcalf, Michigan (2003, 2004, 2005)
Andre Metzger, Michigan (1976, 1977, 1978)
Brandon Paulson, Minnesota (1989, 1992)
Justin Ruiz, Utah (1997. 1998)

The rest of the voting schedule follows:
• Voting on the quarter-finals will begin on Friday July 1
• Voting on the semi-finals will begin on Tuesday 5 July
• Voting on the final will begin on Saturday July 9

The first U.S. Junior National Wrestling Championships were held at the University of Iowa Fieldhouse in 1971 and were contested only in men’s freestyle. Greco-Roman wrestling was added in 1972. With the 2020 event canceled due to the pandemic, this year’s version will be the 50th time our country’s top high school Greco-Roman wrestlers will come together to fight for national titles and All-American honors. Many world and Olympic champions and medalists have participated in this prestigious event.

The 2022 USA Wrestling USMC Junior and 16U National Championships will be held at the FargoDome in Fargo, ND, July 16-22, featuring competition in Men’s Freestyle, Greco-Roman and Women’s Freestyle.

HOW TO VOTE

50th Junior Greco-Roman National Championships – Fantasy Bracket

When you click, you will see support. To vote, click the “Cast Vote Now” button at the top of the bracket. You will be taken to a screen where you will see each pairing and you can click on a box to vote on the winner. You must enter your email to vote.

Robert J. King