Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Local Wrestlers Vie for Olympics

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Local Wrestlers Vie for Olympics

Article excerpt

A lot has changed since Coleman Scott and Jake Herbert appeared in the 2012 Olympics in London.

In January of 2013, the International Olympic Committee dropped wrestling from the 2020 Olympics. Seven months later, the IOC reinstated wrestling after several changes were made by United World Wrestling, formerly known as FILA.

The 2016 Olympics will be held in Rio de Janeiro, with the wrestling competition Aug. 14-21. One weight class was removed from men's freestyle and men's Greco-Roman and two more weight classes were added in women's freestyle. That means all three disciplines will have six weight classes.

Scott and Herbert are two of three former WPIAL wrestlers entered in the United States Olympic Freestyle Team Trials this weekend at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City beginning Saturday.

Scott, a 2004 graduate of Waynesburg High School, earned a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics while competing at 60 kilos (132 pounds). With one fewer weight class at the 2016 Olympics, Scott was forced to change weight classes. He had the option of moving up to 65 kilos (143 pounds) or dropping to 57 kilos (125.5 pounds).

"I decided that dropping to 57 kilos would be the best option for me," said Scott, who is now the coach at North Carolina. "I haven't wrestled at that weight in 10 years. It took a lot of time and effort with extra workouts and changing my diet to reach that weight."

Scott is seeded fourth in the 12-man weight class for the Olympic Trials.

"My goal is to be the best in the world and win an Olympic gold medal," Scott said. "But I must win this weekend to get that opportunity."

The top seed at 57 kilos is Tony Ramos, an Iowa graduate who qualified for the World Championships in 2015. Penn State senior Nico Megaludis, a Franklin Regional graduate, also is entered at 57 kilos.

"Two years ago, I placed second at the World Team Trials after losing, 1-0, to Tony Ramos in the finals on a controversial call," Megaludis said. "Last year, I didn't compete due to an injury."

Megaludis earned his Olympic Team Trials berth by winning the NCAA Division I Tournament at 125 pounds three weeks ago. …

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