FARGO, N.D. – Greco-Roman might not be Sheldon Seymour’s favorite style of wrestling, but when he won a stop sign in it, he wasn’t about to complain.
Seymour captured the 106-pound title at the Cadet National Greco-Roman Tournament on Thursday – the first of three championships for Team Pennsylvania, which finished third in the team race.
“I’m not that big of a Greco fan, but I know it’s going to help in the other styles,” said Seymour, a rising junior at Troy Area High School. “Freestyle is my favorite. Greco is OK.”
Seymour, Carson Manville (152 pounds) and Kolby Franklin (195) were more than OK, as each won titles, tying Pennsylvania with Illinois and Washington for the most champions. It was the most that Pennsylvania has had in a single year since 2011.
“We went 3-for-4 in the finals, so it was pretty amazing, knowing that we’re not a Greco state,” Seymour said.
Brookville’s Colby Whitehill (285) was the lone runner-up for Team PA, while Dorian Crosby (3rd at 195), Jacob Van Dee (4th at 88), Lane Aikey (7th at 113), Keegan Rothrock (8th at 152), John Meyers (8th at 182) and Nate Miller (8th at 285) also earned All-America honors.
Things didn’t start off well Seymour. Colorado’s Kenneth Crosby threw him for four in the first 15 seconds, then gutted him for a 6-0 lead. Crosby looked to finish it off with another big throw, but Seymour countered it and put Crosby on his back. The Colorado wrestler fought it for more than 30 seconds before Seymour picked up the fall.
Despite falling behind early, Seymour didn’t panic.
“I just kept my composure and kept saying, ‘You’ve still got it. You can’t give up any more points and work your way back little by little,’ ” he said.
Just getting to the finals was sweet for Seymour, who finished third in both styles last year and was third in freestyle this year. He also placed fourth in the PIAA this season.
“The feeling was great – I finally got in the finals,” Seymour said of his 11-0 victory over Cael Swensen of Minnesota in the semifinals. “I got over that third-place hump.”
Three of a kind
Manville hasn’t had a probably getting over any kind of Fargo hump. He won his fourth title in four tries on Thursday – becoming just the 16th Cadet to do so. This one came via a 7-1 victory over Camdyn Ingram of Louisiana. Manville took a 2-0 lead on an arm spin and countered an arm spin attempt by Ingram for a second takedown.
The second period was mostly a battle for position, but another Ingram arm spin attempt led to a Manville go-behind to seal the victory.
After finishing second in freestyle, Franklin came out with a mindset to go big. He threw Brandon Hoselton for four.
“Once I get people’s feet off the mat, they can’t defend anything,” Franklin said. “The bigger points just added up quicker.”
Franklin tried for another big toss, but Hoselton countered it and tied the match at 4.
That didn’t affect Franklin’s game plan, and he planted Hoselton for another four-point throw.
“You’re going to give up points in Greco,” he said. “On the second one, he caught me, and I got off my back pretty easily. Once I got his feet off the mat, I could feel him trying it again, so I changed the direction of it and got four with less risk.
Franklin added a two-point takedown and another four-pointer for a 14-4 victory.
He said his Fargo performance sets him up well heading into his freshman year of high school.
“It definitely gives me confidence, but it all comes down to the state tournament, especially with my goals in Pennsylvania,” he said. “Freestyle, it gives me something to work for next year, and Greco I’ve just got to do it again.”