NWCA All-Star Classic returns after four-year hiatus

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The National Wrestling Coaches Association All-Star Classic presented by Cliff Keen will make a triumphant return this year – and the scheduled matchups will make for one of the best wrestling events this year.

It was a staple of the college season, but it went on a four-year hiatus. Thanks to the efforts of the NWCA, the All-Star Classic presented by Cliff Keen will take place on November 22 in Austin, TX and will be broadcast live on FloWrestling.

Eleven men’s matches and two women’s matches have been confirmed, and more women’s matches are about to be confirmed.

“I know I speak for our Board of Directors when I say a heartfelt thank you to the participating wrestlers, their coaches and our partners at FloSports for giving us this opportunity to showcase our heroes and champions,” said the NWCA Executive Director Mike Moyer. .

The long fight is at 174 pounds, which is a rematch of the 2022 NCAA Tournament Finals between Penn State’s Carter Starocci and Virginia Tech’s Mekhi Lewis. Starocci – the two-time returning champion at weight – outlasted 2019 NCAA champion Lewis at 165 pounds, 5-5 in the second tiebreaker. This will be the second meeting between the two.

The 165-pound match between David Carr of Iowa State and Quincy Monday of Princeton took years to prepare. Their fathers — Iowa State’s Nate Carr and Oklahoma State’s Kenny Monday — are two of the greatest wrestlers in American history, and their rivalry might be the fiercest in college history. This will be the first meeting between their sons.

Returning NCAA champions on the card include Carr, Lewis, Starocci, Keegan O’Toole and Aaron Brooks.

One of the confirmed women’s matches features a returning NAIA champion against a returning NCWWC (NCAA programs) champion. Iowa Wesleyan’s Adaugo Nwachukwu was the 2022 NAIA champion at 136 pounds and moves up to 143 to face 2021 NCWWC champion Alara Boyd of McKendree.

Every wrestler on the card is a returning All-American.

The All-Star Classic provided some of the most memorable moments in college wrestling history. Cornell’s Kyle Dake and Penn State’s David Taylor met for the first of three times in college at the 2012 event. Iowa’s Brent Metcalf got a technical pinfall over State’s Darrion Caldwell North Carolina in 2008 before Caldwell defeated Metcalf, 11-6, in the 2009 NCAA Tournament Finals.

Iowa State’s Dan Gable won 181 straight games during his high school and college career before losing to second-placed Washington student Larry Owings 13-11 in the final of the 1970 NCAA championship. Gable played his last collegiate game several days later at the All-Star Classic, earning a pinfall over Old Dominion’s Wayne Bright in front of a fan crowd in Ames, Iowa.

In 2016, Helen Maroulis became the first American to win an Olympic gold medal in women’s freestyle wrestling. Before that, she struggled in the 2014 All-Star Classic and won a 15-0 technical fall over Jillian Gallays.

Scheduled matches

Men’s matches
125: Pat McKee (Minnesota) vs. Brandon Courtney (Arizona State)

133: Lucas Byrd (Illinois) vs. Michael McGee (Arizona State)

141: Cole Matthews (Pittsburgh) vs. Real Woods (Iowa)

149: Sammy Sasso (Ohio State) vs. Austin Gomez (Wisconsin)

157 Jacori Teemer (Arizona State) vs. Will Lewan (Michigan)

165: Dean Hamiti Jr. (Wisconsin) vs. Keegan O’Toole (Missouri)

165: David Carr (Iowa State) vs. Quincy Monday (Princeton)

174: Carter Starocci (Penn State) vs. Mekhi Lewis (Virginia Tech)

184: Aaron Brooks (Penn State) vs. Parker Keckeisen (Northern Iowa)

197: Jacob Warner (Iowa) vs. Stephen Buchanan (Wyoming)

285: Anthony Cassioppi (Iowa) vs. Greg Kerkvliet (Penn State)

Women’s matches
143: Adaugo Nwachukwu (Iowa Wesleyan) vs. Alara Boyd (McKendree)

191: Gabrielle Hamilton (Life) vs. Sydnee Kimber (McKendree)

More women’s matches are about to be confirmed

Participants by college
Arizona State: Brandon Courtney (125), Michael McGee (133), Jacori Teemer (157)

Illinois: Lucas Byrd (133)

Iowa: Real Woods (141), Jacob Warner (197), Antony Cassioppi (285)

Iowa State: David Carr (165)

Iowa Wesleyan: Adaugo Nwachukwu (143)

Life: Gabrielle Hamilton (191)

McKendree: Alara Boyd (143), Sydnee Kimber (191)

Michigan: Will Lewan (157)

Minnesota: Patrick McKee (125)

Missouri: Keegan O’Toole (165)

Northern Iowa: Parker Keckeisen (184)

Ohio State: Sammy Sasso (149)

Penn State: Carter Starocci (174), Aaron Brooks (184), Greg Kerkvliet (Penn State)

Pittsburgh: Cole Matthews (141)

Princeton: Quincy Monday (165)

Virginia Tech: Mekhi Lewis (174)

Wisconsin: Austin Gomez (149), Dean Hamiti (165)

Wyoming: Stephen Buchanan (197)


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