We have been talking about the next generation of wrestlers coming through the pipeline. This years group at Tulsa Nationals proved they are ready to step up.
Tulsa Nationals is the toughest youth individual folkstyle tournament in the country. Wrestlers come from all over the country for a chance to win a Tulsa National Title. While PINnacle has had some incredible results at major tournaments, we have only had 4 Tulsa National Champions before this year in the boys division.
For the first time in history we placed in the top 3 of a division, including winning the 15U division. At 15U 75lbs we had 3/4 semifinalist, and 3 out of the top 4 placers. In the 12U division we placed 2nd with 4 placers.
Gigi Bragg, and Charli Raymond, won championships in the Girls division. They were our first 2 champions in the girls division. Both of these girls are dominant in the top position, Gigi with Leg Riding, and Charli with cradles!
The boys division ended up with 10AA, and 1 National Champion, Jore Volk. These are both just 1 short of our previous record of 11AA, and 2 national titles in 2012. For reference, that 2012 group had 5 finalist including Cashman(champ), Kerkvliet(champ), S.Webster, Robb, and Sokol.
Tulsa Nationals is a great place to find losses. Some kids go through the year and have a hard time finding competition. This is never the case in Tulsa. It is also a tournament where we see how not to treat your child. We are blessed with parents that have the bigger picture in mind. We are grateful for all the parents that are willing to help out other wrestlers, in some cases these wrestlers are direct competitors to their own sons/daughters. As we have stated since the beginning of our program, this isn't about winning a youth state title, this is about being the best in the country, and in the world. All these wrestlers competing against each other, and practicing with each other, will make them stronger!
Jore Volk has made a step up in his level of wrestling this year. Jore has always had the athletic ability, and this year has made great strides in his attacks to beat anybody he faces. He was confident throughout the tournament and is now 2/3rds of the way(as is Gigi Bragg) to the Trinity award.
Every tournament is a roller coaster. At one point we lost 100(or so it seemed) straight matches, but then came back in the wrestle backs to win 12 in a row. For us coaches, this is draining and we literally tell ourselves to "love the fight" all the way through it.
Other performances that stuck out to me;
Jack Nelson wrestled hard and scored points, didn't place, but was so close. He will continue to get better as he forms his style.
Parker Lyden broke his Tibia in FOOTBALL this fall and had 10 whole days of practice before the tournament. He lost in the first round, and then had the 2nd seed in the wrestle backs. Parker went on to beat the 2nd seed, but unfortunately ran into PINnacle teammate Charmoli(who took 3rd) next and was eliminated. Proud of Parker for his comeback and can't wait for the rest of his season.
Eli Paulson wrestled aggressive and mean. He may have wrestled more in the ties(2on1 and underhook) that we preach, than anybody.
Tyler Wells learned from defeat. His talent is limitless, if he wrestles with confidence throughout the match, he will be hard to beat.
We did see plenty of areas that we must approve upon. That is the great part of this tough tournament, it will show your weaknesses.
Gigi Bragg 1st Girls 12U 58
Charli Raymond 1st Girls 9U 65
Jay Hammarstan 6th 6U 60
Kaleb Mead 3rd 8U 67
Lawson Eller 4th 10U 64
Brandon Morvari 2nd 12U 64
Tyson Charmoli 3rd 12U 67
Tyler Wells 3rd 76
Zach Hanson 4th 12U 88
Jore Volk 1st 15U 75
Alan Koehler 2nd 15U 75
Koy Buesgens 4th 15U 75