Beat The Streets - New York City Wrestling

BTSNY youth enjoyed two opportunities, on and off the mat, this past Columbus Day weekend. From Saturday, October 7 to Sunday, October 8, 21 youth wrestlers participated in the Columbus Day Duals. On Monday, October 9, 30 student-athletes attended the visit to Rutgers University. 

Though the 21 BTSNY wrestlers had a rocky start at the 2017 Columbus Day Duals in York, Pennsylvania this weekend, strong performances emerged by Sunday afternoon. The two-day tournament was long and provided tough competition for the youth wrestlers. The group won their final three duals, finishing with a respectable 3-5 record. The team fought "tooth and nail for every point and position," said Adeshola Logunleko, Queens Training Center Coach. 

 Daniel Bogie (145; senior at Eagle Academy) and Demitreus Henry (152; senior at Grand Street Campus) each had perfect 8-records throughout the competition. Logunleko was impressed with Bogie and Henry, and not just because they were undefeated. "As seniors, they exemplified leadership qualities and a coherent understanding of their ability." He believes that both can be serious contenders for state titles once the season starts. Both Bogie and Henry say that they "take every match as if it was a match at the state tournament."  

Not far behind, Dylan Nerich (220; senior at W.C. Bryant) and Jayson Gomez (285; senior at Eagle Academy) posted 7-1 records. An honorable mention goes to Mitchell Barcus, a freshman at Eagle Academy for wrestling against more experienced high school wrestlers. "Although he didn't win a match, as a freshman, he faced very tough competition-- he may in fact be NYCs next big name," said Logunleko. 

"After this weekend, I am very impressed with how well the athletes were able to stay composed," said Logunleko. He described how Tyler Rivera and Justin Rodriguez, though new to the sport, "showed a lot of heart and will be serious contenders in a few years." He believes that some wrestlers, ironically, would improve their performances if they focused more on fun and stressed less about their matches. He observed that others know what they need to work on and are in the process of improving.  

"The amount of matches we were able to wrestle was phenomenal,said Dionisos Georgiou, Staten Island Training Center Coach.  Georgiou further described how most wrestlers had eight matches, "which is equivalent to a quarter of a high school season—all in just one weekend."  

This tournament was a great experience to warm up before the actual season starts. "Pre-season tournaments like this are great to gauge where we are and see where we need to improve," concluded Logunleko.  

There is still time to improve pre-season—be sure to head to your neighborhood training center for those crucial extra practices. Congratulations to all participants on their performances! 

The next day, BTSNY provided lunch and transportation for the visit to Rutgers University, where 30 youth wrestlers got to go on a tour of the campus and the wrestling room. Outside of walking on campus, eating in the dining hall, and sitting in a classroom, BTS student-athletes got an exclusive opportunity. Billy Ashnault, assistant coach at Rutgers, led the kids through the wrestling facilities and locker rooms. Ashnault also had a Q&A session with the kids, where they got to ask him any questions regarding being a student-athlete at Rutgers. 

Jamie Gray, BTS Programming Director, emphasized that the goal of these visits "is to plant a seed of inspiration, and hopefully paint a picture of the soon-to-be reality as college students." Gray feels confident that this visit encouraged the kids towards going to college, enough to make them question how they can make it happen and what steps they need to take 

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