The second day of the 2018 Junior Greco Worlds equaled the excitement Day 1 had to offer, which is really saying something considering how electrifying Kamal Bey‘s (77 kg, Sunkist) run to the semifinals was. Andrew Berreyesa (82 kg, NYAC/FLWC) winning three hard-fought matches to make today’s final along with Cohlton Schultz (130 kg, NYAC) earning his second-straight bronze put a fitting exclamation mark on Tuesday’s action in Trnava, Slovakia.
After the tournament wrapped on Monday, Junior World Team coach Nate Engel shared his overview of the Day 1 performances, what they meant, and how the athletes were setting up to prepare for Day 2. But with all that went down yesterday and the emotional highs and lows that accompanied it, Engel understandably needed to grab some rest. Therefore, his Day 2 report is just a little late, though no less noteworthy to include here.
Engel Post-Day 2 from the 2018 Junior Worlds
“Yesterday, we started off with Alston Nutter in the repechage against Armenia (Hrachya Poghosyan). Nutter is going to grow from this and get better training Greco at Northern Michigan full-time. So, the sky is the limit with Nutter.
“Peyton (Omania) wrestled the Egyptian (Mohamed Elsayed), who had a heartbreaking loss in the semis, so Peyton didn’t get pulled back in which was disappointing. Tyler Dow wrestled pretty tough. I know that he is only a first-year Junior, so he has two more years at Junior and he’s going to learn from it. He’s going to get better and I think his future is extremely bright for Greco.
“Chad Porter lost to the Belarusian (Ilya Laurynovich) who wound up making it to the semis. We know that Chad is going to go back to Arizona State and keep growing and doing some great things.
“Andrew Berreyesa had an amazing, amazing day. I’ve known Andrew for a long time and I knew that he was capable of coming over here and making a great run. You know, we talked about it at the first training camp. Every match he was getting better and better. The game plan for him was pretty simple — to get his opponents tired and his technique and takedowns were going to come. His par terre defense was incredible yesterday, too. He got put down twice in the last match and didn’t get turned, winning 2-2. It’s great to get another Junior in the finals in back-to-back years for the first time in quite a while. I’m looking forward to Berreyesa getting it done today in the finals.
“Going into the medal matches, Kamal (Bey) had a rematch from last year’s World Championship finals. He had said this guy (Azkhol Makhmudov) has been waiting a whole year for this. I’m obviously disappointed for Kamal, but as soon as he was done wrestling, he came down and said that he is now going to focus his attention on winning a World Championship at the Senior level in Budapest. He is going to go for it and prepare for that.
“Cohlton Schultz, man, that guy is incredible. He had wrestled that guy (Ante Milkovic) in Austria and last year, so his confidence was high, as per usual. But obviously, this was with a World medal on the line. He went out there, wrestled hard, broke that Croatian in the second period. The Croatian tried to go for about :30 and that was it. An incredible job by Cohlton. His future’s so bright in Greco. Considering that he is only 17-years-old, it’s going to be pretty scary as he gets older and older. And it goes to show you, if you dedicate yourself to one style, in this case Greco, you can truly, truly do some amazing things at the World level.
“That was a great way to end the day. I want to give a shout out to Coach (Gary) Mayabb for everything he’s been doing these past few years. It is really showing that this movement is growing in the United States, and I’m excited for tonight.”