Gable Steveson’s debut at wrestling’s highest level last month was a success, with the Apple Valley High School senior finishing fourth at 125 kilograms (275.5 pounds) in senior men’s freestyle at the U.S. Open in Las Vegas. Beginning today and running through Sunday, Steveson will try to build off that at the World Team Trials in Rochester.
Steveson will be especially busy because he’ll try to make the U.S. World Championship team in both senior and junior divisions, one of only two wrestlers in the field to attempt that. Steveson, a reigning world champion at the junior level, will join 12 other Minnesota-based freestyle wrestlers in Rochester. Eight will compete at the senior level, four at the junior level.
At stake for the senior wrestlers in the tournament is a spot in Sunday’s best-of-three final against the U.S. Open champion. Those senior winners in Rochester will advance to face any previous world medalists in the Final X competition this summer for a berth in the World Championships. For the juniors, World Championship team berths will be on the line in Rochester in the best-of-three final vs. the U.S. Open champ.
The World Championships will be Oct. 20-28 in Budapest, Hungary.
World team freestyle trials at a glance
Where: Rochester Community and Technical College Regional Sports Center
When: Begins 10 a.m. Friday, through Sunday afternoon.
Minnesotans in senior level: Zach Sanders (57 kg), Seth Gross (61), Jayson Ness (65), Dylan Ness (70), Carson Brolsma (74), Joe Rau (86), Hayden Zillmer (92), Gable Steveson (125) and Tony Nelson (125). Also, current Gophers Jakob Bergeland (65) and Owen Webster (86), and incoming Gophers freshmen Steveson, Patrick McKee (57) and Brayton Lee (70) will compete at the junior level.