Vote now for the Junior Greco-Roman Nationals 50th Anniversary Fantasy Bracket; Help choose the best of the half-century
This summer will mark the 50th anniversary of Greco-Roman wrestling at the U.S. National Junior Wrestling Championships, a major national high school competition that has had a huge impact on the sport in our country for half a century.
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. In 2021, USA Wrestling celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Junior Nationals with fantastic support for the stars of the Junior Nationals based on 50 years of freestyle achievement.
A Greco-Roman division was added to the National Junior Championships in 1972 and has been contested every year since. In 2020, the National Junior Championships in both styles were canceled due to the pandemic. When you do the math, that means 2022 is the 50th year that there has been a Greco-Roman Junior National Championship competition.
Many former World and Olympic medalists have competed in this prestigious event in the Greco-Roman division.
To celebrate this legacy, an interactive panel of 32 athletes featuring the top Greco-Roman junior national championship competitors of the past 50 years has been created for fans to vote on.
This year’s Fantasy category will focus solely on the achievements of Junior National Championship athletes in Greco-Roman wrestling.
Fans will be able to vote in each round for three consecutive days, with the winners of each pair being announced the following day. There will be five ballots. Here are the launch dates for each competition round:
• Voting for the round of 16 will begin on Thursday 23 June
• Voting on the round of 16 will begin on Monday 27 June
• 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
USA Wrestling fans can vote for each round by visiting:
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 for the winner. You must enter your email to vote.
And now, let’s take a look at the 32 high school stars who were selected for this all-star bracket.
All 3,509 former Greco-Roman All-Americans were vetted for consideration. Of this group, there were 533 former champions. The 171 two-time finalists, 24 three-time finalists and three four-time finalists were under consideration. There have been 68 double champions and 13 triple champions. There was only one wrestler who won the event four times.
Here are the Fantasy Bracket competitors in alphabetical order, along with their state affiliation and the years they won the junior national Greco-Roman titles.
Leo Bailey, Oklahoma (1979, 1981)
Anthony Cassioppi, Ill. (2017, 2018)
Adam Coon, Michigan (2011, 2012, 2013)
Kenny Cox, Oregon (1994, 1995, 1996)
Matt Goldstein, Ill. (1993, 1994)
Dennis Hall, Wisconsin (1987, 1988, 1989)
Sean Hage, Georgia (1993, 1994, 1995)
Sam Henson, Missouri (1987, 1988)
TJ Hill, Missouri (1995, 1996, 1997)
Bobby Janisse, Oregon (1989, 1990)
Cam Jones, Utah (1999, 2000, 2001)
David Kjeldgaard, Iowa (1994, 1995, 1996)
Dan Knight, Iowa (1984, 1986)
Steve Knight, Iowa (1981, 1982)
Taylor LaMont, Utah (2014, 2016)
Ridge Lovett, Idaho (2018, 2019)
Garrett Lowney, Wisconsin (1997, 1998)
Pat Lynch, New Jersey (1990, 1991)
Brent Metcalf, Michigan (2003, 2004, 2005)
Andre Metzger, Michigan (1976, 1977, 1978)
Mitchell McKee, Minnesota (2015, 2016)
Josh McLay, Minnesota (1999, 2000)
Matt Nagel, Minnesota (1999, 2000, 2001)
Brandon Paulson, Minnesota (1989, 1992)
Dave Powell, Ill. (1973, 1974)
Jason Powell, Oklahoma (1997, 1998, 1999)
Justin Ruiz, Utah (1997. 1998)
Kendrick Sanders, Florida (2007, 2008, 2009)
Cody Sanderson, Utah (1993, 1995)
Sam Shields-Colbray, Oregon (2014, 2016)
Khris Whelan, Ill. (1976, 1977, 1978)
Oscar Wood, Oregon (1991, 1992, 1993, 1994)
This also marks the 20th year that a women’s freestyle division has been part of the Junior National Championships. Plans are for similar fantasy support for these young stars on the 25th anniversary of their tournament.