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|U.S. Nationals preview at 74 kg/163 lbs. in Greco-Roman wrestling|
By Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
Long-time Greco-Roman standout T.C. Dantzler of the Gator Wrestling Club is the No. 1 American at 74 kg/163 pounds with another veteran, Keith Sieracki of the U.S. Army, right behind him.
Dantzler won the World Team Trials last year, knocking off U.S. Nationals champion Darryl Christian in the finals. Christian has been sidelined with an injury and is currently not ranked in the top 10, but he may be back for Vegas.
The athletic, explosive Dantzler has made three of the last four World teams. He has never won the U.S. Nationals, finishing second on three occasions and placing third in five other trips to Vegas.
Sieracki made the 2001 World team and has won the U.S. Nationals four times. Dantzler won the Dave Schultz Memorial this year while Sieracki won the Sunkist Kids and was second at the New York AC meet while competing at 84 kg/185 pounds.
Cheney Haight (USOEC/New York AC) is ranked third in this class with Sasa Petkovic of the New York Athletic Club, the NYAC Invitational champion, next at No. 4. Haight won a silver medal at the Dave Schultz Memorial International.
Jess Hargrave of the U.S. Army is fifth, Brandon McNab of the U.S. Army sixth, Jacob Fisher seventh and Zac Dominguez eighth. Dominguez has gained valuable experience since coming out to Colorado Springs to train a couple years ago. Andrew Bisek and Kevin Lozano complete the top 10.
Hargrave won the Sunkist Kids Open and was third at the Dave Schultz Memorial. McNab swept Fisher 4-0, 4-0 in the Sunkist Kids meet.
This weight class also includes returning U.S. Nationals placewinners Carson Bernard of the U.S. Marines, Josh Henson of the Dave Schultz Wrestling Club and Robb Maxwell.
This shapes up to be another potential finals matchup between long-time rivals Dantzler and Sieracki. But don't count out the crop of crafty veterans just behind them. It will be interesting to see how this weight class unfolds.
2005 U.S. NATIONALS RESULTS
1st - Darryl Christian, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC) dec. Jacob Volkmann, Minneapolis, Minn. (Minnesota Storm), 1-0, 1-0
3rd - T.C. Dantzler, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC) dec. Kevin Lozano, Jefferson, La. (USOEC), 3-0, 1-0
5th - Jess Hargrave, Quantico, Va. (U.S. Marines) dec. Carson Bernard, Quantico, Va. (U.S. Marines), 3-0, 0-1,1-0
7th - Josh Henson, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Dave Schultz WC) dec. Robb Maxwell, Sandy, Utah (Cal Poly), 1-0, 1-0
THEMAT.COM RANKINGS FOR MARCH 2006
1. T.C. Dantzler, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Gator WC)
2. Keith Sieracki, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
3. Cheney Haight, Orem, Utah (USOEC/New York AC)
4. Sasa Petkovic, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
5. Jess Hargrave, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
6. Brandon McNab, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army)
7. Jacob Fisher, Platte City, Mo. (USOEC)
8. Zac Dominguez, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
9. Andrew Bisek, Chaska, Minn. (USOEC/Minnesota Storm)
10. Kevin Lozano, Jefferson, La. (USOEC/Gator WC)