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Future and Current OSU Wrestlers Greg Kerkvliet, Travis Wittlake, and Kaden Gfeller Vie for World Team Spots



The Junior World Team trials is this weekend and the Cowboy RTC has one current and a few future Cowboys headed to the trials. In contrast to the senior trials which have the “Final X” element, the winner of this tournament is the US World Team member and will represent the US at the World Championships. So this is big for them.

Daniel Kerkvliet Jr. may be in the best spot of any of them. The future Cowboy heavyweight and current high school junior ripped through the US Open and tech falled everyone in his path on the way to his title. By virtue of winning the US Open he sits in the final of the tournament awaiting his opponent who he’ll take on in a best-of-three matchup to decide who will be on the World Team. I really don’t know who’s going to be able to keep up with him here. The guy he wrestled in the final at the US Open was ranked fourth nationally and Kerkvliet handled him comfortably. The incredible thing is that he’s still young enough to wrestle Cadets. Here’s him winning a Cadet World Title last year.

Kaden Gfeller and Travis Wittlake Jr. aren’t in as enviable of positions as Kerkvliet. They have to wrestle the tournament to make the final, but the talent for them to win it is there. Gfeller came in as the 2 seed at the US Open and finished fourth. He’ll have to wrestle better here but could very reasonably make a run to the final where he’ll match up with OU freshman Dom Demas for a best-of-three matchup to try and make the World team.

Wittlake interestingly is registered at 74 kilograms for this.

He wrestled at 79 KG at the US Open and actually made the Junior World Team at 76 KG last year. Flo has even projected him as a college 184. That doesn’t look like it will be the case for the future Cowboy which is great for OSU as the roster fit of 174 is a lot better and, in theory, he may even be able to make 165 in college — 74 KG is only 163 pounds.

He didn’t have the best showing at 79 KG at the US Open, finished seventh after coming in as the No. 1 seed, and there is some talent at 74 KG. But I think it’s safe to be optimistic about his prospects of making the team here. The winner of the US Open at 74 KG was Iowa Sophomore Jeremiah Moody.

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