Truckee youngsters look to pin down gold at state
A handful of young Truckee wrestlers will hit the mats this weekend for the USA Wrestling Nevada State Championships.
The state meet marks an end to impressive seasons by several of the youth wrestling program’s members, who will now vie for state championships in folkstyle, freestyle, and Greco-Roman.
Among the team’s representatives this weekend, Truckee’s Sammy Svitana has had an exceptional season on the mats, going 55-1 with 28 wins by fall and 14 by technical fall. His only loss on the year came against a wrestler from Oregon at one of the more prestigious tournaments in the West — the Rumble in Reno. Svitana most recently captured first in all three wrestling disciplines out of the U8 age group’s 49-pound weight class at the Sierra Wrestling Association Iron Man Championships to earn the meet’s Triple Crown Singlet.
Also out of the U8 age group, Quinn Dorst, wrestled to runner-up finishes in Greco-Roman and freestyle out of the 56-pound division. Dorst was also third in folkstyle, and will enter the state championships with a record of 28-14 with eight wins by fall and 10 by technical fall.
In the U12 age group, Joseph Svitana captured first place in Greco-Roman out of the 63-pound weight class at the Iron Man Championships. He was also second in folkstyle and fourth in freestyle as part of going 26-22 on the year with 18 wins by fall.
The team also had Lucas Scapini wrestle his way to second place in folkstyle at the meet, reaching the finals out of the middle school boys’ 71-pound weight class.
Also representing the team at the meet will be Jacob Svitana, who took fourth in each discipline at the Iron Man championships in the U6 age group’s 34- through 37-pound weight class; and Hank McDaniel, who owns a pair of wins by fall and will grapple in the U12 tournament.
Also standing out at the Iron Man Championships were Porter Whitman, who finished with third places in Greco-Roman and freestyle out of the U6 age group’s 41- through 44-pound division; Martin Palacio, who was third in the folkstyle U12 age group’s 82-pound division; and Jack Ridgel, who was second in folkstyle out of the U12 age group’s 63-pound division
This weekend’s state meet marks the end to the fourth year for Truckee’s youth wrestling program, which saw the team’s roster double from its usual size.
“That kind of growth comes with challenges, but we’ve been able to adjust and keep retention high despite a long season that started with our first practice on (Nov.) 6,” said Coach Aaron Svitana in an email to the Sun.
Due to the large roster of wrestlers this season, the program had to split its twice-weekly practices into age groups, and relied on the help of several coaches and parents to help work with the youngsters.
“It’s exciting for the future of the sport in Truckee to see the families providing support and encouragement to build a small but growing wrestling community at the youth level,” said Svitana in an email to the Sun.
The Truckee youth wrestlers will hit the mats in Winnemucca, Nevada on Friday for the first of three days of competition at the Nevada State Tournament.
Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.