World medalists Attao, Adams lead U.S. Greco-Roman team at U20 World Championships
by Richard Immel, USA Wrestling
Photo: U20 World bronze medalist Aden Attao competing at the 2023 U20 Pan-American Championships in Santiago, Chile. (Richard Immel, USA Wrestling)
A savvy Greco-Roman bunch comprised of four past age-group U.S. World Team members, including two World medalists, is primed and ready to compete at the 2023 U20 World Championships, Aug.14-20 in Amman, Jordan.
The Greco-Roman portion of the event will be held on the final three days of action at Princess Sumaya Lounge in Amman’s Sports City. Athletes in the first five Greco-Roman weight classes (55-63-77-87-130 kg) begin their tournaments on Aug. 18, with the second wave of weights (60-67-72-82-97 kg) kicking off on Aug. 19. Each bracket will be contested over a two-day stretch, running through semifinals on day one, followed by repechage and medal matches on day two.
The U.S. Greco-Roman team for the U20 World Championships was determined at the U20 World Team Trials held in early June at Spire Academy in Geneva, Ohio. Each champion from the Trials earned a berth on the U20 World Team.
Two members from last year’s Greco-Roman team are back for another run at the U20 World podium—Idaho stalwart Aden Attao at 130 kg and entertaining Colorado prospect Max Black at 60 kg.
Attao picked up a U20 World bronze medal in Sofia, Bulgaria, last summer—the only U.S. Greco-Roman representative to make the medal stand. The Boise, Idaho, native has had an impressive summer season on the Greco-Roman scene by adding a U20 Pan-American gold medal and a USA Wrestling Junior Nationals title to his resume. He will be among the favorites to claim heavyweight gold in Jordan.
Since going 0-2 at last year’s event, Black has been busy testing his limits on the Senior level, in addition to his time spent at the U20 national events. He finished with an impressive third place performance at the U.S. Open in Las Vegas. He also competed at the World Team Trials Challenge Tournament as a Final X hopeful and went on a meaningful Senior-level tour to the Thor Masters tournament in Denmark. His continued development and increased competition level should pay dividends in Jordan.
U17 World champion Joel Adams of Nebraska is certainly high atop the list of must-watch Greco-Roman wrestlers in the U.S. regardless of age level and will be a strong medal threat at 67 kg for the U.S. in Jordan. He impressed on the Senior scene this spring with a fifth-place finish at the U.S. Open and fourth place finish at the World Team Trials Challenge Tournament to his credit. Not to mention, he owns a recent win over current Senior-level U.S. World Team member and 2020 Olympian Alejandro Sancho, further proving his ability to compete against elite competition.
Similar to Adams, Illinois native Braden Stauffenberg holds past World Championships experience at the U17 level. He was a member of the U17 U.S. World Team that competed in Budapest, Hungary, back in 2021, going 0-1 at 71 kg. Stauffenberg, who was a Junior Nationals champion in Greco-Roman in 2022, is the U.S. representative at 72 kg in Jordan.
Six members of the U20 World Team recently competed at the U20 Pan-American Championships held in Santiago, Chile, with all six earning medals. Landon Drury (63 kg), Derek Matthews (77 kg), Michael Altomer (82 kg), Wyatt Voelker (87 kg) and Attao each posted gold medal outings, while Sawyer Bartelt (97 kg) picked up a silver medal. Drury, Bartelt and Attao also competed at and won the Junior Nationals held in Fargo, N.D., last month, as did Adams.
55 kg representative Zachary Silvis emerged with a tremendous outing in Geneva, Ohio, to qualify for the team. He doesn’t possess many recent accolades in the international styles but does own a gold medal from the 2019 U15 World Combat Games in Greco-Roman.
There is good representation from the NCAA Division I ranks spread across this Greco-Roman team. Silvis (North Dakota State), Stauffenberg (Michigan State), Matthews (Northern Colorado) and Voelker (Northern Iowa) each enter year two on a college campus this fall with aspirations of being quality contributors to a starting lineup. Adams (Michigan) and Attao (Oregon State) embark on true freshman campaigns this fall for their respective institutions.
The U.S. finished in 12th place as a team in the Greco-Roman division at the 2022 U20 World Championships with 39 total team points and one bronze medalist. This year’s unit appears well prepared to improve upon last year’s mark.
Those seeking to follow along in real time can reference the complete event schedule below. Amman, Jordan, is in the GMT +3 time zone, which is seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern Time. USA Wrestling will provide regular updates on TheMat.com and its social media platforms throughout the event.
2023 U20 World Championships
At Amman, Jordan, August 14-20
Monday, August 14
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (MFS 57-65-70-79-97 kg)
5:15 p.m. – Opening Ceremony
6 p.m. – Semifinals (MFS 57-65-70-79-97 kg)
Tuesday, August 15
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (MFS 61-74-86-92-125 kg)
4:45 p.m. – Semifinals (MFS 61-74-86-92-125 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (MFS 57-65-70-79-97 kg)
Wednesday, August 16
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (WFS 50-55-59-68-76 kg) and Repechage (MFS 61-74-86-92-125 kg)
4:45 p.m. – Semifinals (WFS 50-55-59-68-76 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (MFS 61-74-86-92-125 kg)
Thursday, August 17
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (WFS 53-57-62-65-72 kg) and Repechage (WFS 50-55-59-68-76 kg)
4:45 p.m. – Semifinals (WFS 53-57-62-65-72 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (WFS 50-55-59-68-76 kg)
Friday, August 18
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (GR 55-63-77-87-130 kg) and Repechage (WFS 53-57-62-65-72 kg)
4:45 p.m. – Semifinals (GR 55-63-77-87-130 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (WFS 53-57-62-65-72 kg)
Saturday, August 19
10 a.m. – Qualification Rounds (GR 60-67-72-82-97 kg) and Repechage (GR 55-63-77-87-130 kg)
4:45 p.m. – Semifinals (GR 60-67-72-82-97 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (GR 55-63-77-87-130 kg)
Sunday, August 20
4 p.m. – Repechage (GR 60-67-72-82-97 kg)
6 p.m. – Medal Matches and Awards (GR 60-67-72-82-97 kg)
*Listed times reflect local time in Amman, Jordan, which is seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern Time
U.S. Greco-Roman Roster
55 kg – Zachary Silvis (Cottage Grove, Minnesota/Pinnacle WC)
60 kg – Max Black (Castle Rock, Colorado/ NMU-National Training Center)
63 kg – Landon Drury (Colorado Springs, Colorado/Betterman Elite Wrestling)
67 kg – Joel Adams (Omaha, Nebraska/The Best Wrestler)
72 kg – Braden Stauffenberg (Plano, Illinois/Michigan WC)
77 kg – Derek Matthews (Burley, Idaho/Northern Colorado WC)
82 kg – Michael Altomer (Stuyvesant, New York/Curby 3-Style Wrestling)
87 kg – Wyatt Voelker (Manchester, Iowa/Panther Wrestling Club RTC)
97 kg – Sawyer Bartelt (Coral Gables, Florida/Gladiator Wrestling)
130 kg – Aden Attao (Boise, Idaho/Suples WC)
U.S. Greco-Roman Delegation
National Developmental Coach – Cheney Haight
USA Wrestling Assigned Coach – Isaac Anderson
Personal Coach – Dylan Carew
Personal Coach – Garett Kiley
Personal Coach – Chris Williams
Personal Coach – Ivan D. Ivanov
ATC – Carrie Moore
MD – Vermon Esplin
Official – Brock Zollinger
Official – Nick Mancini
Official – Kevin Maxwell
Official – Robyn Van Houten
Team Leader – Paul Kieblesz
Team Leader – Meredith Suess
USA Wrestling, Executive Director – Richard Bender
USA Wrestling, Sr. Manager, Communications – Richard Immel