April 3, 2012
EVANSTON, Ill. - Members of Northwestern head coach Drew Pariano's second recruiting class recently wrapped up their high school careers and have compiled a number of achievements, living up to the group's top-10 ranking. The class of five had a successful finish to their high school seasons and a number of them are still competing at national tournaments. The class, which was rated the 10th best in the country by WIN Magazine, continues to compile various accolades and below is a brief update on each signee, along with a few articles highlighting their achievements over the past few months.
Jason Tsirtsis • Crown Point, Ind. • Crown Point H.S.
Projected College Weight: 141/149 lbs.
Jason Tsirtsis is only 18 years old, yet he was seconds away from qualifying for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. This past weekend, he wrestled at the final U.S. Olympic Trials qualifier in Cedar Falls, Iowa. This was the last chance to qualify for the trials, and the 18-year-old held his own against some of the best wrestlers in the country at any age. He won his first bout by fall against Gage Harrison and then advanced to the quarterfinals, defeating 2009 NCAA Champion from North Carolina State, Darrion Caldwell, 8-0, 1-1 (Tsirtsis scored the final point in the second period, thus advancing in the best-of-three bout). He then earned a spot in the semifinals, with a win over Vincent Hannon, 1-1, 2-0, 5-2, before former two-time All-American Joe Johnson (Iowa, '06) edged Tsirtsis in the semis, 3-1, 1-4, 4-3.
Tsirtsis earned a spot in the third-place bout, defeating Will Rowe (Oklahoma, '11), 4-0, 2-1. Since Cary Kolat, who already qualified for the trials, finished first at 66 kg, the runner-up and third-place wrestlers earned a trip to the trials. Tsirtsis wrestled Zach Bailey, a two-time All-American from Oklahoma, in the third-place bout and after dropping the first period 3-0, he came back to win the second 1-0. In the decisive third period, Bailey scored the winning point in the closing seconds to win the qualifying spot, 1-0.
This is all coming on the heels of Tsirtsis's historic high school season as he became just the eighth wrestler in Indiana history to win four individual state titles. Tsirtsis powered through his competition at the Indiana state tournament, including a 22-7 win by technical fall in the 145 lbs. final, to capture his fourth and final crown and complete his high school career with an impressive 176-2 overall record. Those two losses? Came in the form of 3-2 decisions during his freshman season.
Tsirtsis also has been selected to compete at various all-star events. He helped Team USA win the 2012 Dapper Dan Classic with his 13-4 major decision at the all-star event. He also will compete at the prestigious Dream Team Classic, which takes place April 20, a day before the Olympic Trials, in Iowa City. This event annually features some of the top high school wrestlers in the country as former NU grapplers Jake Herbert and Ryan Lang are past participants.
• Post Tribune: Wrestler of the Year: Crown Point's Jason Tsirtsis
• InterMat: Tsirtsis Named InterMat H.S. Wrestler of the Year
• InterMat: Dapper Dan results
• Flowrestling.org: Jason Tsirtsis Just Keeps Scoring
• Post-Tribune: Crown Point's Tsirtsis Finishes Career as Eighth Wrestler to Win Four Titles
• Wrestling USA Magazine: Dream Team Classic Dual Meet
• TheMat.com: Team USA turns in dominant performance in Dream Team Classic
Dominick Malone • Granby, Conn. • Wyoming Seminary
Projected College Weight: 125 lbs.
Dominick Malone won his second national prep title, this time at 126 lbs., in February. The Wyoming Seminary product, which is the same high school that current NU All-American heavyweight Mike McMullan attended, also was named the tournament's most outstanding wrestler and won the Ray Mendoza Award for most team points.
• Patch.com: Granby's Malone Wins National Prep Wrestling Title
• CitizensVoice.com: Seminary's Malone Crowned National Champion
• InterMat: InterMat unveils 2012 High School All-Americans
Garrison White • Concord, N.C. • Jay M. Robinson
Projected College Weight: 125/133 lbs.
Garrison White won his third-straight North Carolina state title and was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the 2012 state meet. White pinned his 126 lbs. finals opponent in just 44 seconds to win his third state crown.
This past weekend, he wrestled at 2012 FloNationals and finished third at 120 lbs. White went 6-1 at the tournament, winning two matches by fall, one by major decision and had a 20-5 tech fall victory in the third-place bout.
• Independent Tribune: Garrison White Threepeats in State Wrestling
• Independent Tribune: White Reigns in State Wrestling Finals
Ben Sullivan • Eagle River, Alaska • Apple Valley H.S. (Minnesota)
Projected College Weight: 165/174 lbs.
Ben Sullivan helped Minnesota powerhouse Apple Valley High School win its 20th-consecutive title at the individual tournament and seventh-straight state team title, defeating St. Michael-Albertville, 49-24, in the finals. Sullivan took home a bronze medal at 170 lbs. in the individual tournament and recorded a win for Apple Valley in the finals of the team tournament. He also placed in the top eight at 152 lbs. at the NHSCA Senior Nationals to earn All-America status.
Sullivan is originally from Alaska where he was a two-time state finalist and 2011 state champion. He moved to Minnesota prior to his junior year to wrestle for Apple Valley and after sitting out his junior year, was able to compete as a senior. This InterMat article from 2010 explains his unique situation and decision to move across the country.
Matt Greene • Slingerlands, N.Y. • Columbia
Projected College Weight: 133/141 lbs.
Matt Greene had a phenomenal regular season, posting a perfect 48-0 record at 126 lbs., with 32 of those wins coming by fall, heading into the New York State Wrestling Tournament. He reached the 50-win mark during the state tournament, which included a fall in 55 seconds to record his milestone 50th victory. Greene lost to the eventual state champion but concluded the season with an impressive 50-2 record and 33 falls.
• TimesUnion.com: Columbia is confident
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