|Clark, Vogel, Taylor, Fox and Cozart win USA Wrestling Greco-Roman awards for May 2006|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
The USA Wrestling Greco-Roman National Team has created a series of new awards recognizing outstanding achievements within in Greco-Roman wrestling community.
The winners of awards for the month of May are:
Senior Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month for May 2006
Jake Clark, Quantico, Va. (U.S. Marines)
Clark won the 84 kg/185 lbs. division at the U.S. World Team Trials in Sioux City, Iowa, May 28. He defeated Aaron Sieracki of the U.S. Army in the Championship Series in competitive three-match series. Sieracki won the first match, 1-1, 1-1, but Clark battled back to win the final two matches by 5-0, 4-0 in bout two and 3-2, 1-1 in bout three. Clark won two other matches on the way to the finals. He stopped Chas Betts of the USOEC/Gator WC, 3-3, 7-0, 6-0 in the first round, then defeated Brad Ahearn of the U.S. Army 5-2, 1-1 in the semifinals.
Clark qualified for his first U.S. World Team. He is the only new member of the U.S. Greco-Roman World Team from last year, as the other six weight classes were won by members of the 2005 U.S. team. Clark was the 2006 U.S. Nationals champion. For the last three seasons, Clark had climbed to No. 2 on Greco-Roman Team USA, placing second at the 2003 and 2005 World Team Trials and the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials. He was third in the 2000 CISM World Military Championships. Clark is originally from S. St. Paul, Minn.
Junior Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month for May 2006
Kendall Vogel, Westfield, Wis.
Vogel won a gold medal at 152 pounds in Greco-Roman at the Northern Plains Junior Regional Championships held in Waterloo, Iowa, May 4-6. Vogel defeated Brett Rosedale of Iowa in the championship finals, 5-5, 2-1. Vogel won six matches during the tournament, including two technical falls and a pin. He was named Outstanding Wrestler in the Greco-Roman division at the tournament. He also placed sixth in freestyle in the competition. This spring, he placed second at the FILA Cadet Nationals in Greco-Roman at 152 pounds. He was third at the 2005 Cadet Nationals in Greco-Roman at 140 pounds.
Youth Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month for May 2006
David Taylor, St. Paris, Ohio
Taylor won the gold medal at 105 pounds in Greco-Roman in the Cadet division at the Central Kids/Cadet Regionals held in Battle Creek, Mich., May 26-28. He placed ahead of runner-up Brian Bokoski of Illinois in the standings. Taylor also placed third in the freestyle division at the tournament. Last season, Taylor was a freshman at St. Paris Graham High School in Ohio, one of the nation's most respected high school team. Taylor was named to the ASICS High School All-American team this week, as a member of the Third Team. He was a Cadet National freestyle champion and Greco-Roman runner-up last summer in Fargo, N.D.
Greco-Roman Leader of the Month for May 2006
Patricia Fox, Kendall Park, N.J.
Fox, an officer with USA Wrestling New Jersey, organized the Clinic of Champions, held at the Lawrenceville School in Lawrenceville, N.J., May 7. This clinic, free to USA Wrestling members, featured three tremendous Greco-Roman clinicians: National Coach and Olympic champion Steve Fraser, World champion Dremiel Byers and National Coach and Olympian Ike Anderson. The turnout was tremendous, with as many as 200 wrestlers of all ages, coaches and parents attending the six-hour clinic. It was a unique opportunity for wrestlers to learn high-level technique, meet heroes and become excited about Greco-Roman wrestling.
"I advocate this for all wrestlers, male and female, because it teaches them moves that not only work in Greco-Roman but also should be used in freestyle and folkstyle. Of all the styles, Greco-Roman teaches the best defense. It is also a great sport for those with perceptual impairments," said Fox.
Fox serves as Treasurer of USA Wrestling New Jersey. She was the USA Wrestling Junior Person of the Year in 2004, and serves on the National Junior Council. Fox is a NCEP Bronze certified coach, as well as a P-2 national pairing official. She has held numerous leadership positions within her state association, including pairing director, membership director, women's director and scheduling director. She has been active within USA Wrestling on the local, state and national levels for a decade.
Greco-Roman Developmental Coach of the Month for May 2006
Russ Cozart, Brandon, Fla.
Cozart is one of the most active and successful high school and youth wrestling coaches in the nation. Cozart is active with the Brandon Wrestling Club program in his community, and the wrestlers from Brandon wrestle at all of the major USA Wrestling events. A large number of athletes that Cozart coaches were participants in the Big Brother/Future Freestyle training camps held in Colorado Springs, Colo. this spring. Cozart also coaches a number of wrestlers who participated in the Southeast Kids/Cadet Regional Championships held in Greenville, S.C. in May, with a number of Florida athletes winning championships and medals in both styles.
He is the head coach at Brandon High School in Florida, which has set the record for the longest dual meet winning streak in wrestling history. His team won its sixth straight Florida 2A state team title this year. His athletes have won numerous USA Wrestling national titles and All-American honors at many age levels during his coach career. One of his wrestlers, David Craig, received the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award this year as the nation's top scholar-athlete. Cozart was named Wrestling USA magazine Coach of the Year for 2006, announced in its May 30 issue. Cozart has won numerous Veterans World gold medals, and is considered the most successful U.S. athlete in history.
The Greco-Roman Recognition Program will run from April through July each season, and will give monthly awards within Greco-Roman in the category of athlete, coach and leader.
There will be monthly awards will be announced on TheMat.com in the following areas:
- Senior Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month
- Junior Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month
- Youth Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Month
- Greco-Roman Developmental Coach of the Month
- Greco-Roman Leader of the Month
At the Junior/Cadet Nationals in Fargo, N.D. each year, the following annual awards will be announced, with a special trophy presented:
- Cadet Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Year
- Junior Greco-Roman Wrestler of the Year
- Cadet Greco-Roman Coach of the Year
- Junior Greco-Roman Coach of the Year
- Greco-Roman Leader of the Year
"We are excited to recognize those who are challenging themselves in all styles of wrestling," said Ike Anderson, National Greco-Roman Developmental Coach. "Most of those involved in Greco-Roman wrestling participate in every style of wrestling. By competing in Greco-Roman wrestling, athletes and coaches improve in all aspects of the sport. By recognizing those who are successful in Greco-Roman wrestling, we are honoring those who are doing what it takes to get better in wrestling."
To nominate an athlete, coach or leader for this awards program, please contact National Developmental Coach Ike Anderson at firstname.lastname@example.org