Beat The Streets - New York City Wrestling

On Tuesday, October 17, 24 BTSNY youth wrestlers visited the Iowa Style Wrestling Club in Somers, New York. While the boys attended the college combine and Q&A in one wrestling room, the girls were in another for a clinic with Terry Steiner, U.S. Olympic Coach.  

The boys' evening started with an hour and a half of a competitively run practice for all attending college coaches to view. The wrestlers pushed hard during the combine, with some even getting approached afterwards by coaches. 

After the coaches had a chance to observe the wrestlers, the wrestlers had a chance to grill the coaches.The Q&A was an opportunity for the student-athletes to ask anything regarding the colleges that the coaches were representing. This allowed the student-athletes to gain insight about what made each school uniqueThe participating coaches included Drew Black (Wesleyan)Matt Mueleners (Brown)Jason Borschoff (Binghamton)Nate Engel (Navy)Joe Dubuque (Princeton)Pat Popolizio (N.C. State)Dennis Papadatos (Hofstra)Brad Bruhn (Cortlandt)Joe Patrovich (LIU Post)Steve Hall (WPI)Marques Gales (Trinity)Jason Holder (Springfield College)Anthony Bonaventura (Stevens Institute of Technology), just to name a few. 

Penn Gottfried, BTS Coach and Junior League Director, believes events like this are in line with the BTS mission to fully develop our student-athletes. "The college process from both an academic and athletic standpoint is so complex that an event like this really breaks it down and gives our kids a tangible idea of where they could be," said Gottfried. Gottfried thought the Q&A session was beneficial since the athletes were able to hear information directly from coaches. 

Jeffrey Gellar, a Junior at Staten Island Tech, felt this was a great learning opportunity"I truly believe that the insight and outlook I received at the Iowa style college event will help me succeed and make a great choice when it comes to selecting a university,” said Gellar.  

While the BTSNY boys participated in the combine and college Q&A, the 12 girls on the trip participated in a freestyle clinic with Terry Steiner, U.S. Olympic Team Coach. Steiner led a high intensity, low impact practice that focused on the essentials—moving your feet, clearing ties, and head position. This clinic served as a reminder to the girls that perfecting the basics will often lead to success. The clinic succeeded in making the girls excited, and even competitive, about getting the fundamentals right. 

Nighyar Calliste, a senior at Edward R. Murrow, was grateful for this opportunity to work on her offense with an Olympic coach. "Today was exhilarating!" said Calliste. She described how she is now more confident that success will follow if her approach is to work even harder and trust the process.  

The girls had their own Q&A with Steiner after the practice. Jacque Davis, Girls Development Director, "loved" this portion of the evening because she got to hear the kinds of questions the girls had—she was especially happy to note that the questions weren't simply technique related. The girls asked questions like the following: "What made you decide that you wanted to coach women? What is the perfect recipe for an Olympic or world team athlete? What is the biggest thing that wrestling has provided you?" This holistic line of questioning indicated to Davis that the girls understood the opportunity they had and took advantage of it. "These girls are so smart and introspective, it shows me that the future of our sport is much brighter than we could ever dream," said Davis. 

Beat the Streets Wrestling is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. If you would like to support our mission to improve the lives and futures of New York City public school students by giving them the opportunity to wrestle, please click the donate button below: