FARGO, N.D. – Every year, the nation’s best young wrestlers come together for the world’s largest wrestling competition, the ASICS/Vaughan Junior and Cadet Nationals at the Fargo Dome in Fargo, N.D.
Butler High School’s Brannon King will represent the Aviators in Fargo this summer. King will wrestle for the West Virginia University Institute of Technology this fall.
This competition produces great stories of champions, many who go on to glory in college wrestling, and ultimately at the World and Olympic levels. This marks the 45th anniversary of the Junior Nationals event, which was first held in 1971 in Iowa City, Iowa.
The tournament is scheduled for July 18-25 and is expected to feature outstanding wrestlers in every weight class. USA Wrestling has official state association team standings in all the divisions held in Fargo, adding to the tradition of state wrestling pride exhibited at this event.
The ASICS/Vaughan Junior Nationals features high school wrestlers in grades 9-12. Every year, the Junior division features talented athletes who are proven winners, as well as many top young stars who are making names for themselves.
Only six have won the coveted USA Wrestling Triple Crown on the Junior level since the program was created in 2007, earned by claiming folkstyle, freestyle and Greco-Roman Junior National titles in the same year. In 2014, there were two Junior Triple Crown winners, Randon Miranda of California at 100 and Danny Vega of Arizona at 106. Both are eligible to return to the Junior Nationals, and attempt to win a second career Junior Triple Crown. The only person to win two Junior Triple Crowns was Adam Coon of Michigan in 2012 and 2013.
Many of last year’s Cadet National champions are expected to move up into the Junior ranks this year and challenge for titles and All-American honors.
Last year, Illinois was the team champion in Greco-Roman, with New Jersey the team champion in freestyle. Following Illinois in the Greco-Roman standings were Minnesota and Utah. Behind New Jersey in the freestyle standings were three teams tied in second: Minnesota, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania.
Another indication of the strength of the state teams are the results from the 2015 Junior National Duals, held this June in Tulsa, Okla. Oklahoma beat Illinois in the freestyle finals, followed by New Jersey, Minnesota and Iowa. Illinois won the Greco-Roman finals over Minnesota, followed by Utah, Oklahoma and Washington.
The Cadet Nationals are for wrestlers who are 15 and 16 years old, some of the best young talents in the country.
The team champions in both Cadet Greco-Roman and Cadet freestyle last year was Illinois. Placing second in Greco-Roman was Minnesota, followed by Wisconsin. Placing second in freestyle was Pennsylvania, followed by Ohio.
The 2015 Cadet National Duals were held in York, Pa. this June and showcased many of the stars expected in Fargo. Illinois was again the team champions in both styles. In Greco-Roman, Illinois beat Washington in the finals, followed Missouri, Kansas and Pennsylvania. In freestyle, Illinois beat Ohio in the championship finals, followed by Washington, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
The ASICS/Vaughan Junior Nationals and the Cadet Nationals brings together hundreds of wrestling volunteers, including referees, pairing officials, coaches, state leaders and tournament operation workers, all who provide the opportunity for more than 4,000 athletes to pursue their dreams.
The ASICS High School All-American Teams for both boys and girls will be honored during the week in Fargo, and the ASICS Boys Wrestler of the Year and the ASICS Girls Wrestler of the Year will be announced.
All of the matches on all of the mats from the 2015 ASICS/Vaughan Junior & Cadet Nationals will be broadcast live through a partnership between USA Wrestling and Flo Wrestling, through the Flo Pro platform.
For updated articles, features and results from Fargo, visit TheMat.com (www.themat.com).Reprinted with permission from USA Wrestling/www.teamusa.org.