USA Greco

Land Repeats: Skellenger, Bobzien, & Valencia Lead Newly-Crowned Cadet World Teamers

2021 cadet world team trials
Corey Land -- Photo: Sam Janicki

Should the 2021 Cadet World Championships set for July in Budapest take place as planned, the United States will come locked and loaded with a fresh group of skillful, hungry competitors ready for the challenge.

The 2020 US Cadet World Team Trials began at 10:00am (CT) on Friday and aired live on FLOWrestling.

With only one best-of-three series going the distance, the final round for the Cadets went by quickly — though there was still more than enough time for several to have made a definitive impact. Key among the tournament champs were Corey Land (55 kg, Ironclad), who represented the US at the ’19 Cadet Worlds, and Jadon Skellenger (65 kg, Suples), one of the nation’s more dynamic prospects and a gold medalist from the ’19 U15 World Combat Games.

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Land downed Gable Porter (Powerhouse WC) in two straight to seal his spot on the Team. In their first match, Porter came close on a go-behind takedown but got hung up over the top of Land, who submarined with a body wrap that turned the tables. From there, Land doubled up on gutwrenches before closing it out with a four-point lift. Match 2 saw Land make good on a very nice lift from the feet that yielded four; but Porter would be heard soon enough. Later in the first period, Land went tight on an arm spin attempt and Porter countered by yanking back for his own four. Just prior to the break, caution points entered the equation. Porter was penalized for coming in with his head, allowing Land to enter the second frame in front 6-4.

They traded fleeting exchanges through most of the second. Porter was intentful in his entries with the natural byproduct of head-clashing once again coming into play. Neither wrestler appeared all that close to a meaningful score, for the action was evenly-matched. More points were distributed just the same. Immediately before the whistle to conclude the bout, Porter was cautioned once again, giving Land an additional two in his 8-4 series-clinching victory.

Skellenger advanced to the final at 65 kilos on the strength of four shutout superiorities, which is to say that he went “untouched”. That changed in his first final round battle with ’19 U15 World Combat bronze Joel Adams (MWC). Following a bit of preamble, Adams slicked his way to over/under’s but exhibited rare patience whilst keeping his position warm. Eventually, it was time to strike, which Adams did by arching Skellenger and picking up four. However, Skellenger rolled right through to score a reversal. Next, the Suples wrestler raked three guts plus a capper to surge ahead 11-4.

Perilously close to a tech loss, Adams stiffened appropriately for the second period. They both demonstrated mature positioning, which served to negate windows for explosive attacks. Skellenger wedged underhooks but Adams dug inside, as well, and did a fine job of staying in the pocket without overextending. Then again, he also had to find a score. And he did. With time a factor, Adams negotiated into one more over/under and again deposited Skellenger down to net four. Down 11-8, he still required another sequence to pull it out, but Skellenger remained upright the rest of the way.

Match 2 did not involved as much drama. Skellenger uncorked an arm spin try near the boundary that fell short of exposure or takedown points, but it did result in a step-out. :30 before the intermission, there was Skellenger again, forcing Adams off the line once more. That pattern did not hold in second period. The arm spin that came up short in the opening round kicked off what wound up the finishing sequence. Skellenger roped Adams’ right arm, scooted out the back, and cranked a pair of guts to put the series away. Skellenger, whose overall performance was steeped in dominance, was named the tournament’s Outstanding Wrestler for his efforts.

adams, skellenger

Joel Adams (red) tested Jadon Skellenger with over/under’s during their 65-kg finals series at the 2021 Cadet World Team Trials, and even scored with the maneuver. But Skellenger, who trains Greco full-time, kept his composure and managed to collect two straight victories en-route to gaining his spot on the US Cadet World roster. (Photo: Sam Janicki)

Bobzien, Basset, & Valencia

If the tournament organizers had considered the idea of giving out co-Outstanding Wrestler awards, they would have done well to name Brock Bobzien (60 kg, Poway HS) one of the recipients. Several eventual World Teamers enjoyed spectacular runs to their respective coronations — but none more so than Bobzien, who downed noted Wisconsin full-timer Cael Kahle (Ringers) in the round-of-32 to kick off his tournament. From there, Bobzien was on a roll, zipping through three more wins that included a decision against Elijah Paulson (PINnacle), the only wrestler to have lasted the distance. In the finals series, Bobzien drummed up back-to-back tech blankings at the expense of top prospect Ayson Rice (LOG). A truly impressive outing.

The one-two punch for Team USA in Budapest will be substantial. At 45 kilos, Bo Bassett (Young Guns) demonstrated a nose for opportunism in grabbing the World Team spot. Mack Mauger (ID) made several meaningful attempts on the feet as he looked to envelope his offense. The hitch? Bassett was ready with timely counters, most significantly evidenced by his land-on-top pin of Mauger in the second period of Match 1. Mauger, despite the scores, was always in the argument. In Match 2, Bassett was heavy with an assortment of snaps and shucks on the feet while Mauger was minding a more conventional, classical approach. It didn’t work out for him, however, as Bassett converted a takedown into a trap-arm gut to cement his place on the World roster.

Aden Valencia (48 kg, Greco-Roman Development) knows what it feels like to stand atop the World stage. He was one of the United States’ champs at the inaugural U15 World Combat Games in ’19 (pacing first in both styles). Valencia will be taking a step up in competition once the summer hits, and it appears that he has already been preparing himself accordingly. Brandishing a slick and reliably-composed arsenal, Valencia put two strong bouts together against Otto Black (Black Fox) in their series, triumphing in both via tech. Black, who had edged Luke Lilledahl (Xtreme) in the semis (one of the most gripping matches of the event), worked to stay in the argument constantly. Valencia wanted to control the zone, and did so for the most part by latching ties that forced Black to play back in. Patience was the key for Valencia in Match 1, and takedown-gut combo was responsible for the conclusion.

As he had in Match 1, Black was prudent with his underhooks while managing the pummel. He was keeping Valencia honest in each exchange, even if scoring opportunities remained scarce. Par terre went to the former U15 champ soon enough, which signaled the beginning of the end. Valenica locked high for a gut and ran the string for six more points before adjusting position on the back-end of the sequence to emerge victorious 9-1.

Additional coverage of the Cadet World Team Trials will become available in the FLOWrestling recap as well as the next Monday Roundup.

2021 Cadet World Team Trials

April 23 — Wisconsin Dells, WI


45 kg

Bo Bassett (Young Guns) def. Mack Mauger (ID) two matches to none
Match 1 — Bassett def. Mauger via fall
Match 2 — Bassett def. Mauger 11-2, TF

48 kg

Aden Valencia (Greco-Roman Development) def. Otto Black (Black Fox) two matches to none
Match 1 — Valencia def. Black 10-2, TF
Match 2 — Valencia def. Black 9-1, TF

51 kg

Kaedyn Williams (LAW) def. Treygen Morin (Suples WC) two matches to one
Match 1 — Williams def. Morin,11-9
Match 2 — Morin def. Williams 14-11
Match 3 — Williams def. Morin 9-4

55 kg

Cory Land (Ironclad WC) def. Gable Porter (Powerhouse WC) two matches to none
Match 1 — Land def. Porter 8-0, TF
Match 2 — Land def. Porter 8-4

60 kg

Brock Bobzien (Poway HS) def. Ayson Rice (LOG) two matches to none
Match 1 — Bobzien def. Rice, 8-0, TF
Match 2 — Bobzien def. Rice, 8-0, TF

65 kg

Jadon Skellenger (Suples WC) def. Joel Adams (MWC) two matches to none
Match 1 — Skellenger def. Adams, 11-8
Match 2 — Skellenger def. Adams 8-0, TF

72 kg

Braden Stauffenberg (Izzy Style Wrestling) def. Malachi Rider (KY) two matches to none
Match 1 — Stauffenberg def. Rider 7-3
Match 2 — Stauffenberg def. Rider 9-3

80 kg

Ryder Rogotzke (PINnacle) def. Antony Tuttle (PINnacle) two matches to none
Match 1 — Rogotzke def. Tuttle via fall
Match 2 — Rogotzke def. Tuttle via inj. default

92 kg

Nathan Wemstrom (Izzy Style Wrestling) def. Connor Barket (Red Cobra) two matches to none
Match 1 — Wenstrom def. Barket 8-0, TF
Match 2 — Wenstrom def. Barket 7-2

110 kg

Jim Mullen (NJ) def. Aden Attao (Suples WC) two matches to none
Match 1 — Mullen def. Attao 12-3, TF
Match 2 — Mullen def. Attao 10-0, TF


45 kg

1. Bo Bassett (Young Guns)
2. Mack Mauger (ID)
3. Edwin Sierra (Extreme Heat WC)
4. Cadyn Coyle (MWC)
5. Davis Motyka (X-Calibur)
6. Javaan Yarbrough (Arsenal)
7. Andrew Fox (Champions WC)
8. Brayten Casey (Menomonie WC)

48 kg

1. Aden Valencia (Greco-Roman Development)
2. Otto Black (Black Fox)
3. Luke Lilledahl (Xtreme Training)
4. Noah Nininger (Smith Mountain Lake)
5. Sam Herring (PA)
6. Nathan Desmond (PA)
7. Elias Navida (Poway HS)
8. Tyler Washburn (Garage Boyz)

51 kg

1. Kaedyn Williams (LAW)
2. Treygen Morin (Suples)
3. Elyle Francisco (Anchorage Youth)
4. Alan Koehler (PINnacle)
5. Miles Anderson (MWC)
6. Logan Sweeney (Wayzata Youth)
7. Reid Spurley (Sebolt)
8. Turner Campbell (Combat WC)

55 kg

1. Corey Land (Ironclad)
2. Gable Porter (Powerhouse)
3. Zan Fugitt (MO)
4. Joseph Fernau (Izzy Style)
5. Kamdyn Williams (LAW)
6. Rhett Peak (Cowboy)
7. DJ Gillett (Mat Sense)
8. Tanner Frothinger (ID)

60 kg

1. Brock Bobzien (Poway HS)
2. Ayson Rice (LOG)
3. Keith Smith (MWC)
4. Jake Hubby (Ascend)
5. Cole Rhemrev (IL)
6. Colton Parduhn (Interior Grappling)
7. Jake Hall (WGW)
8. Elijah Paulson (PINnacle)

65 kg

1. Jadon Skellenger (Suples)
2. Joel Adams (MWC)
3. Pierson Manville (PA)
4. Jayden Colon (Izzy Style)
5. Tyler Antoniak (MWC)
6. Brett Back (WGW)
7. Gunnar Hamre (WI)
8. Q’veli Quintanilla (Inland NW TC)

72 kg

1. Braden Stauffenberg (Izzy Style)
2. Malachi Rider (KY)
3. Jake Jones (PA)
4. Dylan Elmore (Kansas Wrestling Center)
5. Nicholas Hall (Delaware Wrestling)
6. Thor Michelson (NWWC)
7. Jed Wester (PINnacle)
8. Holden Garcia (NJ)

80 kg

1. Ryder Rogotzke (PINnacle)
2. Anthony Tuttle (PINnacle)
3. Cody Merrill (CA)
4. Soren Herzog (CO)
5. Gabriel Arnold (GA)
6. Cole Han-Lindmyer (PINnacle)
7. Joshua Knudten (Team Poeta)
8. Jacob Hansen (PINnacle)

92 kg

1. Nathan Wemstrom (Izzy Style)
2. Connor Barket (Red Cobra)
3. Robert Plympton (OR)
4. Ryder Depies (Northern Exposure)
5. PJ Casale (NJ)
6. Max Ramberg (Baldwin Woodville WC)
7. Jackson Dewald (MWC)
8. Sean Carroll (Kansas Wrestling Center)

110 kg

1. Jim Mullen (NJ)
2. Aden Attao (Suples)
3. Koy Hopke (WI)
4. Nicholas Sahakian (CA)
5. Peyton Hahn (MO)
6. Ashton Davis (Higher Calling WC)
7. Sampson Stillwell (Kobra Kai Training)
8. Pierce Cunningham (Kansas Wrestling Center)

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