April 1997

About Our Newsletter

This is our second edition for the 1997 season, and the beginning of our eighth year of publication. The Capital Area Wrestling News is published by Southern Maryland Wrestling Club in coordination with the Capital Area Wrestling Council, a group consisting of AAU and USAW wrestling clubs located in the Washington D.C. Region.

Maryland Age-Weight Folkstyle State Championships

SMWC had 17 individual champions and 5 -2nds at the Maryland Age/Wt Folkstyle State Championships on March 22-23 to win its 5th consecutive state folkstyle club championship title. Three individual titles were in the open division. According to MSWA spokesman Roger Chang, next year there will be two club awards, one for kids and one for HS and open wrestlers. That's OK with us since we'll likely be able to bring two home.

SMWC Defeats Menlo Park South Africa

In an exciting night of action April 3rd, SMWC soundly defeated South Africa's Menlo Park (Upper Transvaal Federation) National Freestyle Team by a score of 73-29. The crowd of about 200 in the Laurel HS gym was entertained with a short clinic and jump-rope demonstration by World Jump-rope Champion, US Greco-Roman Olympic Team Member, and SMWC Coach Buddy Lee. Following the clinic, SMWC's three top open wrestlers took on South African National Champions and Olympic Team Members in tremendous matches.

SMWC's Queen Anne Youth Team wins CAWL

SMWC's youth league CAWL team captured the Dual Meet Title and then won the League Championship Team Title on March 2. SMWC pulled out of local league competitions after the 1990 season, so this year was the first opportunity in a long time to see how we would stack up against other regular league teams. We did fine. Individual CAWL Champions were Rudy Rueda, Luke Palumbo, Kevin Gabrielson, and Joey Sargent. SMWC members who wrestle for other folkstyle teams during the winter that also won titles included Ryan Herwig, Mike Reynolds, and Bruce Ross. Youth League Coaches were Bruce Gabrielson, Rick Jones, and Bill Mahan. Two weeks later QA finished 3rd at the state meet. Members Rudy Rueda (75), Ryan Herwig (100), Kevin Gabrielson (110), and Joey Sargent (130) won titles.

1997 AAU Grand Nationals

About 25 members hit the competition trail March 26/27 to enter the AAU Grand National Folkstyle Championships in St Louis. Several members traveled with Baltimore's Golden Ring Team, which also entered a good size contingent. Competition was tough with large classes and plenty of good matches. SMWC National Championships went the Kevin and Jason Gabrielson. Eric Miller and David Mahan took seconds. Other placers were Brent Jones, Bruce Ross, Chris Rodregues, and Chip Allen. Although a team trophy was not awarded, SMWC would have done very well in both the schoolboy and the high school age-group competitions.

Hall-of-Fame Activity

Hall-of-Fame Member and SMWC Head Coach Bruce Gabrielson put on a freestyle technique clinic before the NOVA 2 Freestyle/Greco-Roman Tournament in Herndon. SMWC Coach Buddy Lee was awarded the SMWC Patron Award by the SMWC Hall-of-Fame for his continued contributions to the club on April 3rd. Practice was even more interesting than usual March 25th when SMWC Hall-of-Fame Member and current Thomas Stone HS coach Joe Higgs showed up. He hasn't been to a practice in several years, and it was great to see him there again. SMWC Hall-of-Fame Member and coach Steve Arslanian moved to Colorado for a two year stint in March. Steve was a long time SMWC coach and wrestler. We'll look forward to his return. SMWC Hall-of-Fame Member Jim Howard had his long put off knee operation in March.

Grand National California Trip

Members interested in attending the AAU Grand Nationals in California during July on tour must get a $50 deposit to Coach G by May 1st. This will give you the low plane fare and help plan on how many will attend. We will be in So Cal. For a couple of days (at the beach) before going to Bakersfield.

1997 Potomac Valley Challenge Cup

Make plans now to compete at the XIII Potomac Valley Challenge Cup June 7th. Weight classes are every 5 lbs from 55 to 100, then Elite weights to Heavyweight. Two wrestlers can compete at each weight. Five states are expected to enter teams. There is no cost to compete on the state team.

Upcoming Events


3--Ocean City Int. School, OC, NJ, AAU, FS, (609) 390-3904
3--VA Kids State North, Herndon HS, VA, cadets & under, (703) 787-9079
4-- Damascus HS, Damascus, MD, USAW, FS/GR , (301) 253-5725
10--Bethlehem Catholic HS, PA, AAU, FS, (610) 759-9407
11 -- Western MD college, Westminster, MD, USAW FS/GR, (410) 751-5341
17-19--USAW Northeast Regionals, K/C, Syracuse, NY, contact Les King at (518) 695-5507
17 --US Sombo Nationals & MAWA Freestyle Tournament, Palmyra HS, Palmyra, PA, all ages, (717) 671-9410.
24 -- Maryland AAU FS/GR/SO Chs, Golden Ring School, Baltimore, MD, All ages, Grand National Qualifier, (410) 529-4029
30-31 -- Middle Atlantic FS/GR Chs, Lakewood HS, NJ pre-qual req, AAU, All age groups, (215) 757-7884


1-- Friends School, Baltimore, MD, USAW, FS/GR, (410) 435-7646
7-- Potomac Valley All-Star Challenge Cup, Bishop MacNamara HS, Forestville, MD, FS, State Teams Only, two each wt from 55 lbs to Hwt, contact (301) 855-4565
6-7--Freestyle World Team Trials, S, Las Vegas, NV, contact Rich Bender at (719) 598-8181
14--East Coast Club Chs, River Hill HS, Clarksville, MD, all age groups, FS, Individual & Team, (410) 290-6531
15-19--AAU National Folkstyle HS Dual Championships (40 teams), Walt Disney World, Florida, for MD/PV Team contact Bruce Gabrielson, (301) 855-4565
21/22 -- Virginia State Games, Hopewell HS, VA, FS/FO, open to all, (804) 520-1780
29-Jul 3--American Univ All-American Camp, Wash DC, Contact Coach Akerly