May 30, 2012
PITTSBURGH – Some members of the Pitt wrestling team are continuing their success from the 2011-12 season this summer, as numerous wrestlers are faring well in elite national freestyle and Greco-roman tournaments.
The Panthers’ Shelton Mack and Ronnie Garbinsky both finished second at the FILA Junior World Team Trials, coming up one place short of becoming a member of the Junior World Team. Both Mack and Garbinsky advanced to the finals before falling in the best-of-three championship round.
Mack, who came up one win short of All-American status at the 2012 NCAA Division I Championships In March, won his first three matches to advance to the finals of Saturday’s freestyle event in Colorado. A junior next season, Mack didn’t lose a period in his three victories, which included shutouts in both the opening round and the semifinals in the 60kg bracket.
Wrestling in the Greco-roman event, Garbinsky was just as dominant on his way to the championship round in the 66kg weight class. He won the Challenge segment of the tournament with two pins and a shutout. That advanced him to the final against reigning Junior World Team member Nick Alvarez. Both matches of the best-of-three format went three periods.
In addition to the great showing at the tournament, Mack and Garbinsky, who took a redshirt last year in his first season at Pitt, also had the opportunity to make the trip to Colorado Springs a week early and train at the United States Olympic Training Center.
Tyler Wilps also competed at the Junior World Team Trials after qualifying with an outstanding performance at the 2012 FILA Junior Nationals in Madison, Wis., where he won the title at 79 kg. It was the second year in a row Wilps advanced to the freestyle championship match of that event as he finished second in 2011.
Wilps went 2-2 at the Junior World Team Trials on Saturday, highlighted by an opening round win over James Green – a returning national qualifier from Nebraska. In that match, which went three periods, Wilps notched his first victory thanks to a pushout with just one second remaining on the clock.
All three wrestlers competed as members of the Pittsburgh Wrestling Club. Up next for the team is the ASICS University Nationals in Akron, Ohio on Thursday, May 31.