Calvin Germinaro (67 kg, Minnesota Storm) is enjoying perhaps the best day of his (still young) Senior career, and the best part is he’s not alone. Youth has been a factor at the 2019 US Nationals on Friday from Fort Worth, Texas, and it has come in different shapes and sizes.
After downing 2006 Joe Warren (NYAC) in the round-of-16, Germinaro met 2019 Junior World bronze Peyton Omania (MSU/CYC) and blitzed to a first-period tech. Germinaro’s first points came after he picked up two in the midst of a contested exchange near the boundary that required review. The assault continued following the reset. Germinaro scamper behind for two, and then rotated a pair of gutwrenches, as is custom for that region, and finished Omania for the tech win at just :54 into the opening period. In the semis, he will face Michael Hooker (Army/WCAP), who was victorious over ’19 Final X runner-up Jamel Johnson (Marines) 7-1. Last month in Sweden, Johnson had clipped Hooker in the second round of the Haparanda Cup.
Human pinning machine Nolan Baker (NYAC) is a National semifinalist in his first try. The Illinois native combined with Xavier Johnson (Marines) to offer one of the more highly-anticipated bouts of the morning, and both seemed ready to put on a show. Baker scored first, a four-pointer, and added two more from a gut, but Johnson answered right back with his own flurry. But just as things were starting to heat up, it was all over. Johnson held over/under’s and went to launch. Baker stayed heavy and quickly pounced, and ulimately landed on top to secure the fall. Baker’s opponent in the semis this afternoon is none other than top-seeded Alex Sancho (Army/WCAP), who in three matches today has not surrendered a single point — and owns a win over Baker from last month’s Bill Farrell Memorial.
Once thought to be undersized for the weight class, Carter Nielsen (Minnesota Storm/OTS) might just have found himself a very comfortable home at 87 kilos. In his quarterfinal bout, Nielsen was all over Vaughn Monreal-Berner (Marines) and wound up eventually torquing his way to a surprising tech. Monreal-Berner had attempted a throw that Nielsen countered for four. The NMU student kept his lock and proceeded to gut Monreal-Berner over (more than the required number of times) to seal the tech at 10-0. The hill steepens for Nielsen in the next round, as three-time US World Team member Patrick Martinez (NYAC) awaits.
Jake Fisher (Curby 3-Style) is back in a US Open semifinal after coming away with an eyebrow-raising tech win over #2 seed Peyton Walsh (Marines). Fisher had cranked a headlock in the first for two and converted a reverse gut for four, though Walsh was there with two off of a counter. Later in the frame, Fisher defended a Walsh arm spin attempt to collect takedown points and then put a bow on the match with a front headlock roll.
Fisher’s counterpart in the semifinal will be 2018 World Teamer RaVaughn Perkins (NYAC), who defeated Kendrick Sanders (NYAC/OTS). The two were locked in a tactical sort of battle through most of the first period, with Perkins owning a 2-0 lead entering the break. In the second, Sanders went for an arm spin that Perkins countered for two. With under :30 to go, Perkins shucked behind Sanders and immediately converted to a gut, with the four-point sequence capping the bout at 8-0.
In his first US Senior Nationals match ever (as tough as that might be to believe), Cohlton Schultz (130 kg, Sunkist) pinned Donald Neuffer (Marines) in the first period. A bout with former NMU athlete West Cathcart (IRTC) now looms. On the opposite side of the bracket, returning National champ Jacob Mitchell (Army/WCAP) will go up against teammate Toby Erickson.
The semifinal round of the 2019 US Nationals is slated to begin at 4:00pm CT and can be viewed live on FLOWrestling.
2019 US Greco-Roman Nationals/Olympic Trials Qualifier
December 20-21 — Fort Worth, Texas
Mike Fuenffinger (Army/WCAP) vs. Dalton Roberts (NYAC/OTS)
Ryan Mango (Army/WCAP) vs. Sammy Jones (NYAC/OTS)
Alex Sancho (Army/WCAP) vs. Nolan Baker (NYAC)
Michael Hooker (Army/WCAP) vs. Calvin Germinaro (Minnesota Storm)
Kamal Bey (Sunkist) vs. Corey Hope (NYAC)
RaVaughn Perkins (NYAC) vs. Jake Fisher (Curby 3-Style)
Patrick Martinez (NYAC) vs. Carter Nielsen (Minnesota Storm)
Jon Anderson (Army/WCAP) vs. Chandler Rogers (TMWC)
Lucas Sheridan (Army/WCAP) vs. Nick Boykin (Sunkist)
Daniel Miller (Marines) vs. Eric Twohey (Minnesota Storm)
Cohlton Schultz (Sunkist) vs. West Cathcart (IRTC)
Jacob Mitchell (Army/WCAP) vs. Toby Erickson (Army/WCAP)