REPEAT FIRST TEAM SELECTIONS T.J. HILL AND KEN COX TOP 1997 ASICS TIGER HIGH SCHOOL ALL-AMERICAN TEAM
Repeat First Team selections T.J. Hill (Farmington, Mo./Farmington HS) at 112 pounds and Kenny Cox (Eugene, Ore./Churchill HS) at 119 pounds headline the 12th annual Asics Tiger High School All-American Team.
The Asics Tiger All-American Team is selected by a nationwide panel of wrestling experts, and is considered the top honor in high school wrestling. It is the only national all-star team for which high school wrestlers competing on all four grade levels are eligible. Asics Tiger is the title sponsor of USA Wrestling's Junior National Championships and a major supporter of wrestling in the United States at all levels.
"This team represents the best of the best in our high schools today," said Neil Duncan of TW Promotions. "We are proud to have these young men, with their talent and work ethic, representing us. They are clearly the national and Olympic champions of the future."
Members of the First Team, as well as the Asics Tiger Wrestler of the Year, will be honored prior to the finals of the Asics Tiger National Junior Olympic Championships July 26 at Fargo, N.D.
This year's First Team members combined for 39 state titles and 10 Junior National titles.
Cox, a three-time high school state champion, has won five career Junior National titles, three in Greco-Roman and two in freestyle. He has the opportunity to break the national record of six career Junior National titles, held by Sean Hage of Georgia, if he wins a double championship this summer.
Hill is also a three-time high school state champion, and boasts three career Junior National titles. Only a junior, Hill also has a chance to challenge the record books before his career is over.
Mike Zadick (Great Falls, Mont./Great Falls HS), the 135-pound First Team member, was a Junior National double champion last year, claiming both the freestyle and Greco-Roman titles. Zadick won four state high school titles.
Other First Team members who have claimed Junior National titles are senior Mike Khan (Harrisburg, Pa./Harrisburg HS) at 103 pounds and junior Garrett Lowney (Freedom, Wis./Freedom HS) at 189 pounds.
Khan was a Junior National Greco-Roman champion in 1996, while Lowney won the 1996 Junior Nationals in freestyle. Both are two-time state high school champions.
Khan was one of two First Team members to claim a title at the National High School Championships, joined by Joe Heskett (Cuyuhoga Falls, Ohio/Walsh Jesuit HS) at 152 pounds. Heskett was a three-time high school state champion.
Joining Zadick as four-time state high school champions on the First Team were seniors Chad Erikson (Apple Valley, Minn./Apple Valley HS) at 130 pounds and Cael Sanderson (Heber City, UT/Wasatch HS) at 171 pounds. Cael becomes the third Sanderson brother to make the Asics Tiger All-American First Team in the last three years, joining older brothers Cody and Cole.
The rest of the First Team included three-time state champion Jeff Boyle (Norton, Kan./Norton HS) at heavyweight, two-time state champions Paul Paquin (Cornwall, N.Y./Cornwall HS) at 125 pounds, Jamar Billman (Easton, Pa./Easton HS) at 140 pounds, Brian Burrows (Greensburg, Pa./Hempfield HS) at 145 pounds, Ty Wilcox (Santa Ana, Calif./Calvary Chapel HS) at 160 pounds, plus one-time state champion Viktor Sveda (Cuyuhoga Falls, Ohio/Walsh Jesuit HS) at 215 pounds.
The Second and Third teams are not far behind the First Team, with many star athletes who are expected to excel on the college level. The Second Team is led by four-time state champions David Douglas (Dolton, Ill./Thornridge HS) at 135 pounds and John Mark Bentley (Newland, N.C./Avery County HS) at 140 pounds, and combined for 37 state titles. The Third Team boasted a combined 33 state titles.
The Asics Tiger All-America Team includes eight wrestlers at each of the 14 high school weight classes - the First, Second, and Third Teams and five Honorable Mention selections.
Pennsylvania is the only state with three First Team selections. Ohio had the most overall selections with seven, including two First Team members. Iowa, Oregon and Pennsylvania each had six overall selections. The 112-man team includes wrestlers from 38 states, including 85 seniors, 22 juniors, four sophomores and one freshman.
1997 Asics Tiger High School All-American Team
103 - Mike Khan, senior, Harrisburg HS, Harrisburg, PA *
112 - T.J. Hill, junior, Farmington HS, Farmington, MO *
119 - Kenny Cox, senior, Winston Churchill HS, Eugene, OR *
125 - Paul Paquin, senior, Cornwall HS, Cornwall, NY
130 - Chad Erikson, senior, Apple Valley HS, Apple Valley, MN *
135 - Mike Zadick, senior, Great Falls HS, Great Falls, MT *
140 - Jamarr Billman, senior, Easton HS, Easton, PA *
145 - Brian Burrows, senior, Hempfield HS, Greensburg, PA
152 - Joseph Heskett, senior, Walsh Jesuit HS, Cuyahoga Falls, OH *
160 - Ty Wilcox, senior, Calvary Chapel HS, Santa Ana, CA
171 - Cael Sanderson, senior, Wasatch HS, Heber City, UT *
189 - Garrett Lowney, junior, Freedom HS, Freedom, WI
215 - Viktor Sveda, senior, Walsh Jesuit HS, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
HWT - Jeff Boyle, senior, Norton HS, Norton, KS *
103 - Mike Akers, sophomore, Poquoson HS, Poquoson, VA
112 - Nathan Navarro, senior, Ontario HS, Ontario, OR
119 - Jared Lawrence, junior, Sandpoint HS, Sandpoint, ID *
125 - Steven Bradley, junior, Beech Grove HS, Beech Grove, IN
130 - Carlos Blanco, senior, Canyon Springs HS, Moreno Valley, CA*
135 - David Douglas, senior, Thornridge HS, Dolton, IL *
140 - John Mark Bentley, senior, Avery County HS, Newland, NC *
145 - Joe Carr, senior, Woodford County HS, Versailles, KY *
152 - Griff Powell, senior, Suffern HS, Suffern, NY *
160 - Maurice Worthy, senior, Central Regional HS, Bayville, NJ *
171 - Scott Owen, junior, Carlsbad HS, Carlsbad, NM *
189 - Jeff Knupp, senior, Walsh Jesuit HS, Cuyahoga Falls, OH *
215 - Kevin Shippos, senior, Baldwin HS, Baldwin, NY
HWT - Matt Brink, senior, Fruitport HS, Fruitport, MI
103 - Russ Chesson, senior, Washington HS, Washington, NC *
112 - LeRoy Vega, senior, Portage HS, Portage, IN *
119 - Chris Williams, senior, Fowlerville HS, Fowlerville, MI *
125 - Tommy Davis, senior, Salesianum HS, Wilmington, DE
130 - Sean Gray, senior, Blair Academy, Blairstown, NJ
135 - Coyte Cooper, sophomore, Anacortes HS, Anacortes, WA
140 - Jared Frayer, senior, Countryside HS, Clearwater, FL *
145 - Luke Becker, junior, Cambridge HS, Cambridge, MN
152 - Don Pritzlaff, senior, Lyndhurst HS, Lyndhurst, NJ *
160 - Zach Stalder, senior, Burke HS, Omaha, NE *
171 - Mike Cuperus, senior, Worthington HS, Worthington, MN
189 - Tom Grossman, senior, Shady Grove Christian Acad., Grand Prairie, TX *
215 - Shawn Laughlin, senior, Lower Cape May HS, Cape May, NJ
HWT - Luke Owens, junior, Grundy HS, Grundy, VA
* - Member of 1996 Asics Tiger High School All-American Team
HONORABLE MENTION (LISTED IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER)
103: Shawn Adkins, senior, Coventry HS, Akron, OH; Will Filbert, junior, McDonogh School, Owings Mills, MD; Kasey Kohl, freshman, Skutt HS, Omaha, NE; Danny Martinez, senior, Nyssa HS, Nyssa, OR; Jason Vigil, senior, Centaurus HS, Lafayette, CO
112: Kevin Black, junior, River Falls HS, River Falls, WI; Matt Brown, senior, Bristow HS, Bristow, OK; Aaron Holker, junior, Orem HS, Orem, UT; Brady Jones, junior, Brighton HS, Salt Lake City, UT *; Trap McCormick, senior, Bald-Eagle-Nittany HS, Mill Hall, PA *
119: Eric Dunmire, junior, Butte HS, Butte, MT*; Witt Durden, junior, Dublin HS, Dublin, GA; Jason Gabrielson, senior, Northern Calvert HS, Owings, MD *; Bruce Kelly, junior, St. Mark's HS, Wilmington, DE; Bo Maynes, junior, Salina South HS, Salina, KS
125: Billy Ahrens, senior, New Smyrna Beach HS, New Smyrna Beach, FL; Brandon Anderson,