The Jersey Shore has a lot to offer, especially this time of year. On Saturday, that will include the chance to watch high quality wrestling and contribute to a cause close to the hearts of many wrestling fans at the fifth annual Adam Frey Classic at Long Branch High School. Frey, a standout wrestler at Blair Academy and Cornell, passed away after a battle with cancer in 2009.
This year, the event will have a new feature – a high school dual meet tournament, featuring teams from New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware that will begin in the morning.
“We changed it up a little bit this time, adding the dual tournament,” said organizer Josh Liebman. “We’re just trying to do different things to improve the day and make it more interesting. We’ve done exhibition matches in the past, we’ve done clinics in the past. I’m looking forward to this – we have some very good teams coming.”
Each of the squads will get between four and five matches, with a championship meet between winners of the two pools. (10 teams are slated to compete).
In the future, Liebman added that he’d like to ensure there’s at least one squad from each of the states Adam Frey was “from” – Pennsylvania (his home state), New Jersey (Blair Academy) and New York (Cornell).
Each of the participants in the dual portion of the day will then get a ticket into the evening main event beginning at 7 p.m.
“We’re excited to give all the kids a chance to see some great college wrestling up close,” Liebman said. “Some of them haven’t had the chance to see that kind of wrestling in person.”
That wrestling will feature four All-Americans, more than 10 other NCAA qualifiers and some elite high school talent.
“This year, we have a lot more younger guys competing,” Liebman said. “The timing was hard because a lot of guys were going to the World Team Trials and some camps have already started. We tried to get matchups that are as competitive as possible with guys that are aggressive and entertaining to watch.”
Some of the bouts that Liebman pointed to include a battle between All-American Evan Henderson of North Carolina and Ricky Durso of Franklin & Marshall, who came within one win of placing (and was the EIWA champion at 141). In addition, he mentioned a few future Lehigh-Rider battles (Randy Cruz vs. BJ Clagon) and (Darian Cruz vs. JR Wert).
“I think Cruz and Wert might just steal the show,” Liebman said. “They’ve gone 1-1 with each other in the past and they are both so much fun to watch.”
A pair of 2013 NCAA entrants, Jamie Franco of Hofstra and Sam Speno of North Carolina State will square off as will All-American Jarrod Garnett and Brown’s Billy Watterson. Former New Jersey stars Scott Delvecchio (vs.Mike Pongracz) and Rob Deutsch (vs. NCAA Round of 12 grappler Nathan Kraisser) will also take the mat, as will Deutsch’s future Rider teammate Jim Resnick. The Bronc upperweight will face Lehigh’s two-time NCAA runner up Robert Hamlin.
“I think a lot of people might be surprised with Resnick,” Liebman said. “He’s really tough and he’s on the cusp of something really great. His match with Hamlin will be a lot closer than people think.”
Another contest of interest will be the clash between FloWrestling’s #1 nationwide wrestlers in the classes of 2014 and 2015 – Chance Marstellar and Myles Martin, respectively. And former All-American Tyler Nauman will meet Boston’s Nestor Taffur.
That’s just a sampling – the full slate of scheduled matches is below.
For those who can’t attend in person, Nside Wrestling is set to stream the All-Star matches.
“People can come online and make a donation to the Adam Frey Foundation and then watch the video,” Liebman said. “Nside will also archive it and share it. The high school dual matches will also be archived.”
But Liebman hopes to see many fans in person in Long Branch on Saturday to celebrate the life of Adam Frey and to contribute to the work done by his foundation.
“It should be a great day at the shore,” Liebman said. “If people want to come down, they can make a day of it – having a great time at the beach, enjoying the shore while things rebound from Hurricane Sandy and supporting the Adam Frey Foundation while enjoying some great wrestling.”
Entry is $5 for the high school duals and $15 for the All-Star matches. For more information on the Adam Frey Foundation or the event, see this link.
Nathan Kraisser N. Carolina (NCAA R12) vs Robert Deutsch, Rider (NCAA Qualifier)
Jarrod Garnett, Va Tech (All-American) vs. Billy Watterson, Brown (NCAA Qualifier)
Darian Cruz, Lehigh vs JR Wert, Rider
Sal Marandino vs. Jan Rosenberg, Rutgers
Sam Speno NC State (NCAA Qualifier) vs. Jamie Franco, Hofstra (NCAA Qualifier)
Evan Henderson, N. Carolina (All-American) vs. Ricky Durso F&M (NCAA R12)
BJ Clagon, Rider (NJ State Champ) vs. Randy Cruz, Lehigh (NCAA Qualifier)
Scott Delvecchio, NC State vs. Mike Pongracz UTC
Ryan Dunphy, Cornell vs. BJ Young, Newberry
Nestor Taffur, Boston (NCAA Qualifier) vs. Tyler Nauman, Pitt/Drexel (All-American)
Chris Dowdy, Cornell vs. Tj Guidice, Maryland
Tyler Hunt, NC State vs. Scott Festejo, Old Dominion (NCAA Qualifier)
Chance Marsteller (#1 HS Junior in the Nation) vs. Myles Martin (FloWrestling’s #1 Sophomore in the Nation)
Jermaine John, Hofstra vs. Bubba Scheffel, West Virginia
Jimmy Resnick, Rider (NCAA Qualifier) vs. Robert Hamlin, Lehigh (3x All-American)
AJ Vizcarrondo, WVU vs. Brandon Palik, Drexel (NCAA Qualifier)
AJ Mott, Grand View vs. Ophir Bernstein, Brown (NCAA Qualifier)
Josh Davis, Clarion vs. Eric Thompson, Grand View
Expected Club Teams in the Dual Meet Tournament
FURY WC NJ
SEAGULL WC NJ
LONG BRANCH NJ
BOUND BROOK NJ
BEAT THE STREETS PHILLY
OCEAN TWP NJ
Team 78 (REGION 7 ALL-STARS) NJ
One more TBA