The Topper Wrestling Club, Wisconsin’s high school Greco-Roman program that made waves prior to its debut several months ago, went three for three at the Kolding Cup earlier today in Kolding, Denmark.
Payton Jacobson led the charge for the trio by coming away with gold at 60 kilograms. It was a round-robin bracket for Jacobsen, which in this case meant that he only competed in two matches. However, it’s tough to be more dominant than he was on Saturday. Jacobsen first ran over Arvid Nilsson (SWE) 10-2, and then blanked Magnus Skjølstrup (DEN) 9-0. This was not a new experience for the Wisconsin Junior. In November, Jacobson placed second at the Klippan Cup (Senior) and had amassed some viable time overseas before that.
More matches were on the docket for Cael Kahle (55 kg), who earned silver. Kahle began his day with a loss, a 10-9 barnburner at the hands of Matej Zvolanek (CZE). But a storm was coming. Kahle next rattled off three wins in a row, including two superiors which helped propel him into the finals. There, the teen was stopped short of gold by Magne Rasmussen (DEN) 7-0.
On his march to bronze, Henry Amborn (65 kg) enjoyed a full slate of action. In order to enter the medal rounds, Amborn had to slug it out through six matches — yet one more reason why overseas tournaments featuring the Nordic system are preferred for US developmental athletes. And the resume for Amborn when it was all said and done was equally impressive to those of Jacobsen and Kahle. On Saturday, Amborn lost one match, a 6-5 decision to Daniel Pedersen (DEN). That was in his second bout. In between, Amborn starched everyone else. All five of his victories ended via tech, and he outscored the opposition in those wins 49-1. Wow.
Kolding is approximately 230 kilometers from Nykobing Falster, where Brady Koontz (55 kg, TMWC/Ohio RTC), who is also originally from Wisconsin, paced the US delegation by earning silver.
After the tournament, the Topper gang will head to Sundvall, Sweden for a week-long joint international training camp. Senior Greco athlete Benji Peak (67 kg, Sunkist/NMU) is with the team in place of Topper head coach Bill Kahle, who kept a close eye on the proceedings.
“I wanted an average age-level multi-country tournament that was reliably run, so we went to the Kolding Open,” Kahle said Saturday evening following the event. “And it did not disappoint. Now we are off to Sundsvall, Sweden where we will train for the week with guys from around 11 countries, and compete following the training camp. I’m glad my guys were starting to chain more moves together, but it will be nice to fine-tune some of their positioning at the camp.”
January 18 — Kolding, Denmark
TEAM USA RESULTS
Payton Jacobson (Topper WC) — gold
WON Arvid Nilsson (SWE) 10-2, TF
WON Magnus Skjølstrup (DEN) 9-0, TF
Cael Kahle (Topper WC) — silver
LOSS Matej Zvolanek (CZE) 10-9
WON Husein Sangiriyev (DEN) 10-0, TF
WON Oskar Ståhl (SWE) 8-6
WON Dennis Tkatschenko (GER) 8-0, TF
LOSS Magne Rasmussen DEN) 7-0
Henry Amborn (Topper WC) — bronze
WON David Krieg (GER) 12-0, TF
WON Soorosh Sabri (DEN) 9-0, TF
WON Magne Dahl (NOR) 8-0, TF
LOSS Daniel Pedersen (DEN) 6-5
WON Ben Janc (CZE) 10-0, TF
WON Vano Harutunjan (DEN) 10-1, TF