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College wrestlers to battle in InterMat Freestyle Open in New Jersey, April 23, alongside duals for high school boys & girls and middle school boys

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Image of Yianni Diakomihalis by Tony Rotundo, Wrestlers Are Warriors

There will be a big weekend of high-level freestyle wrestling going on at Sportika in Manalapan Township, N.J.

The InterMat National Freestyle Men’s Open, featuring numerous Div. I college wrestlers, will be held along with the New Jersey National Freestyle National Duals, which includes high school boys and girls divisions, as well as a middle school boys division. This is a USA Wrestling sanctioned event.

The men’s event will be held on Saturday, April 23, starting at 9:00 a.m. Eastern time. Student-athletes from the following schools are expected to compete: American, Appalachian State, Buffalo, The Citadel, Clarion, Hofstra, Cornell, Navy and Rutgers.

Among the athletes from a large contingent from Cornell are three-time NCAA champion and 2021 Senior World Team member Yianni Diakomihalis, as well as two-time NCAA All-American and Junior World silver medalist Vito Arujau. NCAA All-American Jon Loew of Cornell is also competing, along with some other Big Red NCAA qualifiers.

Additional NCAA qualifiers from Appalachian State, Rutgers, Clarion and Hofstra will also take to the mat. The participating teams will be bringing some large rosters, with over 140 wrestlers in the field at this time. Additional athletes may be added.

Instead of duals in the men’s division, this year’s competition will be an open tournament. Each weight will be put into different brackets (A, B, C) based on credentials. Pools will be wrestled followed by cross over matches for placement. The goal is to get the wrestlers a minimum of four matches.

This event is being used to get high quality freestyle matches before these athletes compete at the upcoming U.S. Open, U23 World Team Trials, UWW Junior Nationals and World Team Trials and other major freestyle events.

Click for list of men’s participants published by PA Power Wrestling

Organizers plan to make this an annual event, expand the field to more teams, and make the Men’s Open division a dual meet competition moving forward.

Also held on Saturday will be the New Jersey National Duals events for high school girls and middle school boys.

There will be a Canadian Team in the high school girls field, as Team Ontario has confirmed participation. The other girls teams wrestling in the duals include Centurian Pride, Team NJ, Crash Girls Wrestling Club and PA Power. The winner of the 2021 girls dual meet event was Team Tuggman.

The Middle School Boys division has eight strong teams: Seagulls, Rednose, Centurion Pride, Diamond Fish, Mobbin, Scorpions, Triumph and Team NJ.

On Sunday, April 24, the boys high school dual meet event is set, featuring numerous nationally ranked individuals as well as many highly respected teams. Competition will begin at 9:00 a.m. ET. The 2021 boys champion was the JK Squad.

The boys teams that will be in the field include: Doughboy, Seagulls, GBC All Stars, Centurion Pride, Styx, Triumph Blue, Triumph Maize, Lost Boys, SKWC, Garden State, PA Power, Steller Black, Steller Gold, Diamond Fish and GPS.

The high school boys and girls will get quality freestyle competition in preparation for major USA Wrestling events to come later in the season including national championships at the U15, 16U, U17, Junior and U20 levels.

For more information on all the events, visit the Official Website.

The competition will be broadcast live on PA Power Wrestling’s Rokfin Channel. Results will be posted on