NEW YORK -- David Taylor of State College, Pa., will take on Yabrail Hasanov of Azerbaijan at 74 kilos/163 pounds in the first matchup announced as part of the Team USA vs. World All-Stars international wrestling competition in Times Square on May 7. The remaining pairings will be revealed in the coming days for the event, held in support of the Beat the Streets youth wrestling program.
Taylor has been second at the U.S. Open the last two years at this weight class, and was third in the 2013 World Team Trials. He won a bronze medal at the 2013 World University Games, and was eighth in the 2007 Junior World Championships while still in high school. Taylor was a two-time NCAA champion, two-time NCAA runner-up and two-time winner of the Dan Hodge Trophy winner as the nation's top college wrestler during his amazing career at Penn State.
Hasanov is a two-time World bronze medalist (2010 and 2011) and placed fifth in the 2012 Olympic Games. He was a 2011 European champion and won a silver medal at the 2013 World University Games. Hasanov won two Junior World medals, a silver in 2008 and a bronze in 2007. For much of his career, Hasanov competed at 66 kilos/145.5 pounds, but moved up in weight within the last two seasons.
Both athletes won medals at the 2013 World University Games in Russia, with Hasanov taking silver and Taylor taking bronze, but they did not wrestle each other in that tournament. This will be their first meeting on the mat.
Other Team USA wrestlers awaiting their opponents are Nahshon Garrett (57 kilos/125.5 pounds), Jimmy Kennedy (61 kilos/134 pounds), Jordan Oliver (65 kilos/143 pounds), Brent Metcalf (65 kilos/143 pounds), Logan Stieber (65 kilos/143 pounds), Jordan Burroughs (74 kilos/163 pounds), Ed Ruth (86 kilos/189 pounds) and Kyle Snyder (97 kilos/213 pounds) on the men's side; and Helen Maroulis (55 kilos/121 pounds) and Randi Miller (69 kilos/152 pounds) in the women's lineup.
The purpose of this event is to elevate the profile of wrestling and to raise funds to support the operation of over 140 youth development wrestling programs in New York City, serving nearly 3,000 student-athletes.
The World All-Stars roster will feature Olympic, World and Continental medalists from around the world. Additionally, exhibitions involving the young Beat the Streets athletes prior to the international competition will be announced as they are set. The Beat the Streets children will take to the mat at 4 p.m., followed by Team USA vs. the World at 5:30 (match order TBD). The evening concludes with the Beat the Streets Award Gala at 7:30 p.m. at Best Buy Theater (1515 Broadway).
The USA vs. the World dual requires a ticket for reserved seating in Times Square, but is an outdoor event. Pedestrians and non-ticket holders are encouraged to watch. Admission tickets may be bought in advance at www.btsny.org or 212.245.6570. A ticket is required for the Gala. More details are available at btsny.org/gala. Fans can join the conversation about the event on Twitter by utilizing #BTSGalaTSQ.
74 kilos/163 pounds – David Taylor, State College, Pa. (Nittany Lion WC)
Second in 2013 and 2014 U.S. Open… Third in 2013 World University Games… Third in 2013 U.S. World Team Trials… 2010 and 2013 University Nationals champion…Wildcard selection for 2012 Olympic Trials… Second in 2008 and 2010 FILA Junior World Team Trials… Third in 2010 FILA Junior Nationals… Eighth in 2007 FILA Junior World Championships… 2007 Junior Nationals champion in both styles… 2006 Cadet Nationals champion in both styles… 2005 Cadet Nationals champion in freestyle and second in Greco-Roman… 2005 FILA Cadet Nationals champion in both styles… 2012 and 2014 NCAA Champion for Penn State… 2012 and 2014 Dan Hodge Trophy winner as nation's top college wrestler… Second in 2011 and 2013 NCAA Championships… Four-time Ohio state high school champion… College: Penn State… High School: St. Paris, Ohio (St. Paris Graham)… Born: December 5, 1990… Age: 23
74 kilos/163 pounds – Yabrail Hasanov, Azerbaijan
Third in 2010 and 2011 World Championships… Fifth in 2012 Olympics… Seventh in 2009 World Championships… Eighth in 2013 World Championships… Second in 2013 World University Games… Second in 2014 European Championships… Second in 2013 World Cup… 2011 European champion… Third in 2014 Dan Kolov International (Bulgaria)… Third in 2013 FILA Golden Grand Prix Finals (Azerbaijan)…Second in 2013 Intercontinental Cup (Russia)… Third in 2012 Yasar Dogu International (Turkey)… Third in 2011 Olympic Test Event (England)… 2011 FILA Golden Grand Prix Finals champion (Azerbaijan)… Second in 2009 European Championships… Second in 2008 Junior World Championships… Third in 2007 Junior World Championships… Third in 2006 European Junior Championships… Third in 2005 European Cadet Championships… Born: February 24, 1990… Age: 24
Announced Pairings for Beat the Streets Team USA vs. World All-Stars
74 kilos/163 pounds – David Taylor (USA) vs. Yabrail Hasanov (Azerbaijan)