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Wrestling Athlete of the Year
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Wrestling Athlete of the Year

 

2000

Jesse Jantzen
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Shoreham, New York

It is the first year the NHSCA has presented this award. Jantzen's dominating performance at the 11th annual Senior National High School Wrestling Championships, held March 24-26 at the A.J. Palumbo Center in Pittsburgh, Pa., resulted in his unanimous selection as this year's award winner. This year's Senior Nationals attracted a record 797 competitors from 48 states, including a total of 53 entries in the weight class at which Jantzen competed, 140 pounds (competitors received a three-pound weight allowance).   "Athletes like Jesse Jantzen are one of the reasons these Championships are so gratifying," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro said. "He has worked extremely hard to develop his skills and has become one of the best wrestlers ever in New York State. We are extremely proud to be honoring him."  No individual stood out from the rest nationally as the 1999-2000 wrestling season began, but Jantzen put himself in front of the pack by completing, at least statistically, the most dominating career in the history of New York State wrestling. By winning the 145-pound state title the first weekend of March in Syracuse, Jantzen won his fourth state championship after placing third in the state as a seventh- and eighth-grader. No wrestler had ever won four state titles or placed six times in the 37-year history of the New York state tournament, but Jantzen accomplished both. Also selected the state tournament's Outstanding Wrestler as a junior and senior, Jantzen finished his senior season with a 41-0 record and a career record of 215-3. Jantzen was just as dominating in the Senior Nationals, allowing only two points in six matches as he piled up three pins, a major decision, and two technical falls, including a title-match technical fall in just 3 minutes, 17 seconds over Ohio state champion Nate Yetzer of Mansfield. Jantzen was voted the winner of the Jeff Reese Memorial Award as the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler. Also an outstanding student, Jantzen earned a 3.2 grade-point average and scored 1110 on the SAT, and will attend Harvard University in the fall.

 

2001

Steve Mocco
Blair Academy, Blairstown, New Jersey

"Athletes like Steven Mocco are among the success stories produced in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro said. "He has worked extremely hard to develop his skills and has become one of the best wrestlers not only in the state of New Jersey, but the entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring him." Mocco won his fourth National Prep Championships title this year, making him the first wrestler in American high school history to win four state-level titles in the heavyweight division. He has won the Junior National Freestyle Championships the past two years without surrendering a single point.  Mocco, who will attend the University of Iowa, also won the heavyweight championship in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships last month at Newark, Del. He also became the first wrestler in the event's 12-year history to win both individual awards, for the most falls in the least aggregate time and the Outstanding Wrestler award.

 

2002

Nathan Galloway
State College High School, State College, Pennsylvania

"Athletes like Nathan Galloway are among the success stories produced in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro said. "He has worked extremely hard to develop his skills and has become one of the best wrestlers not only in the state of Pennsylvania, but the entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring him." Galloway was a three-time Class 3A state champion at State College High, winning titles at 140, 145, and 152 pounds to lead his team to a second-place state finish. He also was the Cadet National Greco-Roman and freestyle champion in 2000 and was a Junior National Greco-Roman All-American in 2001. Galloway, who will attend Penn State University, also won the 145-pound championship in the 13th annual NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships in April at Cleveland, Ohio, and was voted the winner of the Jeff Reese Memorial Award as the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler.

 

2003

Mark Perry
Blair Academy, Blairstown, New Jersey

"In one of the stronger recruiting classes that we have seen in some time in the sport of wrestling, Mark Perry distinguished himself as the head of the class at the NHSCA Senior Nationals," said NHSCA Executive Director Bob Ferraro. "The NHSCA is proud to recognize Mark Perry as the National High School Senior Wrestling Athlete of the Year." Perry, who won two national prep school titles and a junior national freestyle title after moving to Blair Academy from Stillwater, Oklahoma where he was a freshman state runner-up, won outstanding wrestler awards of three of the nation's largest tournaments this past season. Those awards came at the Beast of the East tournament in Newark, New Jersey; the National Prep Championships at Lehigh University; and the NHSCA National High School Senior Wrestling Championships in Cleveland, Ohio. Though a native of tradition-rich Oklahoma, Perry has opted to attend rival Iowa University to further his academic and athlete careers.

 

2004

J. Jaggers
St. Pete Chanel High School, Bedford, Ohio

In wrestling, the NHSCA honoree is J. Jaggers of St. Peter Chanel High School in Bedford, Ohio. Jaggers capped an outstanding prep career in April with his dramatic run to the NHSCA National Senior Championship at 135 pounds, and his winning of the tournament's Jeff Reese Outstanding Wrestler Award. Jaggers' impressive effort at the tournament included defeating the nation's best in his weight class by major decisions, technical falls and pins. Completing his career with a record of 172-3, the four-time Ohio state wrestling champion will move to Columbus to continue his academic and athletic careers at The Ohio State University.  

 

2005

Dustin Schlatter
Perry High School, Massillon, Ohio

A four-time Ohio state champion, Schlatter had a career record of 147-4 and was twice voted the state's Outstanding Wrestler. He won the 145-pound title in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships in April and was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler. A two-time Asics All-America First Team member, he was voted the Wrestler of the Year in 2004. He was a double champion in the USA Wrestling Cadet and Junior Nationals three consecutive years, earning three Outstanding Wrestler awards in the process. He will attend the University of Minnesota.

 

2006

Adam Hall
Bonners Ferry High School, Bonners Ferry, Idaho

A three-time Idaho Class 3A state champion and four-time finalist, Hall went 7-0 and won one of the toughest weight classes - 152 pounds - in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships in March and was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler. Undersized for the weight, Hall won his first match by 12 points and his final six matches by a combined 11 points, scoring a takedown at the buzzer in an 8-7 victory over three-time Michigan champion Jonathan Reader of Davison (Mich.) High in the title match. He was a USA Wrestling Cadet National All-American in 2004 and a Junior National finalist in 2005. He will attend Boise State University.  

 

2007

Colt Sponseller, West Holmes High School, Millersburg, Ohio A three-time Ohio Division 2 state champion, Sponseller went 6-0 and won one of the toughest weight classes - 160 pounds - in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships in April and was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler. It was Sponseller's second NHSCA national championship, as he also claimed the National Juniors title at 152 pounds in 2006. Sponseller completed a dominating senior season with a 49-0 record and posted a career record of 157-13, and was a finalist for W.I.N. magazine's prestigious Junior Dan Hodge Trophy. He will attend Ohio State University.

 

2008

Jordan Oliver
Easton High School, Easton, Pennsylvania

A three-time Class 3A state champion, Oliver went 6-0 and won the 130-pound weight class in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships in March, winning by technical fall in the finals. Oliver became the first wrestler to claim championships in the NHSCA's signature event as a sophomore, junior and senior, and he was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler as a sophomore and as a junior. After finishing second in the state tournament as a freshman, Oliver won state titles at 103 pounds as a sophomore, taking Outstanding Wrestler honors as well, at 119 as a junior and at 130 this season. He posted a career record of 175-4, and was a finalist for W.I.N. magazine's prestigious Junior Dan Hodge Trophy. He will attend Oklahoma State University.

 

2009

C.J. Napier
Columbus High School, Columbus, Kansas

Napier accomplished a rarity in high school wrestling, winning three consecutive Class 4A state championships at the same weight class, 135 pounds. This year, Napier posted a perfect 36-0 record. As a freshman, he finished third in state at 130, and ended his career with a record of 145-9. Wrestling in one of the toughest weight classes in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships at Virginia Beach, Va. in April, Napier went 6-0 with victories over two three-time state champions and a two-time state champion. His 7-3 overtime victory in the finals earned him the meet's Jeff Reese Memorial Award as the meet's Outstanding Wrestler. Last year, he finished fifth in the NHSCA Junior Nationals. Napier also has been a freestyle wrestling standout. He was a USA Wrestling Cadet National freestyle champion in 2006 and finished fifth in the USA Wrestling Junior National freestyle championships in 2008. He will attend the University of Nebraska.

 

2010

Tyler Beckwith
Greene High School, Greene, New York

In March, Beckwith made NHSCA history by becoming the first wrestler to become a four-time National High School champion. His 6-3 victory in the 171-pound championship match gave him the National Seniors championship, to go along with titles in the National Juniors, the National Sophomores and the National Freshman Championships the past three years. Beckwith won his second consecutive Division 2 state title at 171 this year, and earned Outstanding Wrestler honors after finishing 45-0 with 38 pins to go along with a 44-0 record as a junior. He also was the state runner-up as a sophomore and fifth in state as a freshman, and his career record was 243-13 with 153 pins. A two-time FILA Cadet National champion, Beckwith also is a four-time USA Wrestling Cadet and Junior National All-American, finishing second in Greco-Roman and eighth in freestyle in the Junior Nationals in 2009. A four-year honor roll student with a 3.3 grade-point average, he will attend Binghamton University.

 

2011

Blake Roulo
Matoaca High School, Ettrick, Virginia

In April, Roulo made NHSCA history by becoming the second wrestler to become a four-time National High School champion. His takedown nine seconds into overtime gave him a 3-1 victory in the 140-pound championship match and the National Seniors championship, to go along with titles in the National Juniors, the National Sophomores and the National Freshman Championships the previous three years. He joins Tyler Beckwith of Greene (N.Y.) High, who accomplished the feat last year and also earned NHSCA National Senior Athlete of the Year honors. The title was a record seventh for Roulo in a NHSCA national event. The Group 3A state champion at 140 pounds as a junior, Roulo was the state runnerup at 145 as a sophomore and third in state at 135 as a freshman. He finished 37-3 and was the Central Region champion at 145 this year, and he posted a career record of 185-14. He will attend the University of Buffalo.

 

2012

Mark Grey
Blair Academy, BlairstownTownship, New Jersey

In April, Grey won the 132-pound title in the NHSCA National High School Seniors Wrestling Championships at Virginia Beach, Virginia, and was the recipient of the Jeff Reese Memorial Award as the meet’s Outstanding Wrestler. It was the second significant victory for the Cornell University recruit in an NHSCA national event this season. In January, Grey’s decision win in the final match of the NHSCA Wrestling Festival lifted Blair Academy(20-0) past Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward High, 27-22 in a No. 1-vs.-No. 2 showdown, cementing the Bucs’ spot atop the national rankings this season. That victory earned Grey GTM Sportswear Athlete of the Month honors from the NHSCA. A four-time National Prep Championships champion, Grey finished27-2 this season, 133-7 in his career and won titles at 103, 119and 125 pounds prior to this season. Grey also has a long history of success in USA Wrestling events. He was a double Cadet National champion in 2008 and the Cadet National Greco-Roman champion in 2009, the FILA Cadet National freestyle champion in 2010 and was the runner-up in the FILA Junior freestyle World Team Trials last year. Grey was selected to theASICS All-America First Team at 132 this year.

 

2013

BJ Clagon
Toms River South High School, Toms River, New Jersey  

BJ Clagon closed-out his high school career in-style in April by becoming just the third wrestler ever to win four straight NHSCA national championships. Clagon, who is a two-time New Jersey state wrestling champ, won the 145-pound title at the Senior Nationals. He was ranked 10th in the Class of 2013 all weights on Intermat. Clagon, who will wrestle in college at Rider, finished his career at Toms River South with a 155-6 record and 85 straight victories at the end of his career.

 

2014

Ryan Millhof
Collins Hills High School, Suwanee, Georgia

Ryan Millhof closed out his scholastic career by becoming the fourth 4X NHSCA champ by winning the 126-pound title at the Senior Nationals in Virginia Beach in March. That title came-on the heels of Millhof winning his third Georgia state title in four finals appearances. Millhof was a 4 year letter winner at Collins Hill High School and is a 2x Super 32 Champ. Millhof, who will wrestle at the University of Oklahoma, finished 69-3 during his senior season and 243-7 for his career. Millhof is the first wrestler from Georgia to be honored by the NHSCA.

 

2015

Austin Myers
Campbell County High School, Alexandria, Kentucky

Austin Myers is a four-time Kentucky state champ and three-time National High School Coaches Association national wrestling champ.  Myers won the NHSCA Senior Nationals Outstanding Wrestler Award in March, when he defeated three-time NHSCA champ Kenneth Brinson from Georgia in the 220-pound championship match.  Myers moved up one after the win over Brinson and finished the #2 ranked in the 220 weight class. Myers was undefeated throughout  his career in the state of Kentucky. Myers will be becoming a Mountaineer as he will wrestle collegiately at West Virginia University.

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