Can Luke Stanich dethrone No. 1 Jax Forrest this weekend at Elite 8 Duals?



What is the biggest high school wrestling event in this country every year? Fargo? U17 World Team Trials? Super 32? You wouldn’t go wrong if you answered with one of these events, but even in its early stages, Elite 8 Duels can boast a higher concentration of talent than any other high school event on the calendar.

What makes the Elite 8 Duals so interesting is the fact that so many ranked athletes will compete in such a short time. Take the example of the confrontation between Jax Forest and Luke Stanich. If these two were in the same bracket at Super 32 they would have over 100 other wrestlers in their bracket and by the time they faced each other they would have been through between 4 and 6 matches depending on where they were seeded .

While we’re talking about Forrest vs. Stanich, let’s dig a little deeper into the match. Jax Forrest is all the rage right now. He won an Under-17 silver medal and went straight into Who’s Number One where he came away with a solid victory over No. 2 Nate Jesuroga and retained his number one ranking.

But Elite 8 is where the #1 ranking will die.

Last year, Nate Jesuroga went to Atlanta with a number one seed and came away with 2 weekend losses. This kind of result is commonplace at this event.

Luke Stanich is looking to make a similar impact on Forrest’s rankings this weekend, and he won’t have to wait long to do so. The two are set to meet on day one of the Elite 8 Duals as Team Dynasty take on Team Carnage.

Elbows make it easier

Folk season is upon us, and one thing that means for high school athletes is that eliminations are a little harder to secure. Folk wrestling allows the defensive athlete to take more risks because they don’t have to worry about exposing their back. That said, whenever someone can get away with an effortless takedown in Folkstyle, it should be encouraged.

Slides are about as simple as it gets in folkstyle for two reasons. First, and most importantly, slidebys are low risk and highly rewarding. Second, as soon as your opponent’s hand hits the mat it’s 2 points, whereas in freestyle you have to reduce them to an elbow, knee or head.

Check out Jax Forrest’s elbow control slide. It’s fast, it’s clean and it’s effortless. If he can find his way to the top of Stanich that easily, it’s going to be a long day for Luke.

Stanich should hold it up

Ernie Monaco and The Edge School of Wrestling have been around longer than any other club in the country. At the start of The Edge, they had a ton of success implementing techniques Ernie learned from watching the Russians, specifically a 2-on-1. While a lot of wrestling has changed since 1984, a lot many things, like a good 2-on-1 tie, will never go out of style.

True to Edge-Style, Luke Stanich can score in a variety of ways from this 2-on-1. His loss to Mason Gibson on the big stage in Fargo came down to the wire, but check out the takedown below. If Stanich wants to take Forrest down, he’ll have to get him out of position with this 2-on-1 and keep him as often as possible.


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